I have lived on my own for many years now and one of the things that I was very lax about was cooking for myself. I am ashamed to admit that a typical day would start with 2 or 3 cups of black coffee and a piece of toast. Lunch was my “big” meal of the day and often consisted of something pre-packaged and frozen that I would “nuke”. Supper might be a peanut butter sandwich. Of course I would feel guilty about my lack of fruits and veggies so I’d often cut up a large banana and top it with two scoops of coffee ice cream, Cool Whip and chocolate sauce!
Sound familiar? Well, it seemed to work for me and I didn’t have to worry about all the mess that cooking entailed. But the day came when I had to pay the piper and it’s been a huge eye opener. I have a condition called SIBO (Small Bowel Bacterial Overgrowth) and I am restricted now from eating sweets or any and all refined grains.
I doubt if many of you will have to adhere to such a strict diet but we seniors all need to be aware of what we are putting into our bodies. Foods that come directly from the field will not have all the additives that are in those packaged varieties. Becoming a label reader has really opened my eyes. Look what I found when I decided to try Roasted Garlic Triscuits in place of the ORIGINAL 100% grain Triscuits that were allowed on my diet.
This is the complete list of ingredients for the Original Triscuits:
“WHOLE WHEAT, SOYBEAN AND/OR PALM OIL, SALT. CONTAINS: WHEAT. 0 – SUGAR”
Now, compare that with the ingredients on the side of the same looking box of Triscuits but with the addition of roasted garlic:
“WHOLE WHEAT, SOYBEAN OIL, MALTODEXTRIN, SALT, MONOGLYCERIDES, GARLIC POWDER, MONOSODIUM GLUTAMATE (FLAVOR ENHANCER), NATURAL FLAVOR, CORNSTARCH, DISODIUM INOSINATE AND DISODIUM GUANYLATE (FLAVOR EHANCERS), HYDROLYZED WHEAT AND CORN AND YEAST PROTEINS, SESAME OIL. 0 – SUGAR”.
Isn’t that amazing? Actually it was my sharp-eyed daughter who pointed that out to me and it makes me realize how very important it is to READ THE LABELS ! All those “mono-hyrdo-glycer-late-iums” must be in there for a reason and I doubt very much if it’s to promote good health !!
So, to sum up … each and every one of us has to determine what works for our particular situation but getting educated on this subject could be a life saver … and reading labels is a good place to begin.