Okay! Let’s kick this off with a guessing game.
Read this label and tell me what we are eating:
Soy Protein Nuggets (Soy Protein Isolate, Tapioca Starch, Salt), Peanut Butter Fudge (Corn Syrup, Invert Sugar, Peanut Butter [Peanuts, Sugar, Salt], Sugar, Palm Kernel Oil, Peanut Flour, Milk Protein Isolate, Soy Lecithin, Salt, Vanilla Extract, Xanthan Gum, Carob Seed Gum, Beta-Carotene), Chocolate Flavored Coating (Sugar, Fractionated Palm Kernel Oil, Cocoa Powder, Whey Powder, Nonfat Milk Powder, Soy Lecithin, Natural Vanilla Flavor), Corn Syrup, Acacia Gum, Fructose Syrup, Peanut Butter, Peanut Flour, Peanuts. Less than 2% of the Following: Glycerine, Soy Protein Isolate, Natural Flavor, Calcium Phosphate, Salt, and Vitamin & Mineral Blend (Calcium Phosphate, Ascorbic Acid [Vit. C], Magnesium Oxide, dl-Alpha-Tocopheryl Acetate [Vit. E], Niacinamide [Vit. B3], Zinc Oxide, Calcium Pantothenate [Vit. B5], Ferrous Fumarate [Iron], Pyridoxine Hydrochloride [Vit. B6], Vitamin A Palmitate, Riboflavin [Vit. B2], Thiamine Mononitrate [Vit. B1], Folic Acid [Vit. B9], Chromium Chloride, Biotin [Vit. B7], Sodium Selenite, Sodium Molybdate, Cyanocobalamin [Vit. B12]).
Did you guess it was a candy bar? Nope. It’s a Chocolate Peanut Butter Zone Perfect Nutrition Bar. You’ll find it in the “Nutrition Aisle” at your grocery store. Chances are you’ve eaten something similar when you were tight for time and wanted to grab something “quick and healthy.”
Perhaps you even ate one as a meal replacement at lunchtime. But after you look at the sugar, chemicals, and weird fats in the label you’ve got to ask yourself, “Is this really even food?” It’s more like a food construction—a strange medley of highly processed ingredients.
Do you see how many times the word “sugar” appears in this label? Sugar in all of its many sneaky forms is the death of a good diet. Processed sugar is nothing short of poison. It’s delicious, addictive, and toxic.
I’m not even going to sugarcoat this for you. (Pun fully intended.) Sugar is more than just bad for your teeth; it causes insulin resistance that can lead to diabetes, is the primary cause for obesity, can cause liver disease, heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s and more. Just how nutritious do you think that Nutrition Bar actually is? Sure looks like a candy bar to me.
That’s the problem with the words “nutritious” or “healthy” or “organic.” They lure us into trusting the packaging and we stop doing the work. If you’re serious about improving your diet, you’re going to have to bite the bullet and read the labels.
Imagine that! I mean chicken is just chicken. Spinach is just spinach and avocado is just avocado. You don’t need a label or a special set of instructions. One ingredient foods are a huge step towards eating better.
Ask yourself if what you want to eat is man made or nature made. If it flew, grew, swam or ran you’re probably good to go. If not, depending on what it is , you may want to put it down.
Food that has one ingredient is almost always the most pure form of nutrition. And giving yourself over to clean, simple ingredients will set you on the path to a healthier diet.
Eating better doesn’t have to be complicated. Just following a plan to eat only food found in nature will get you most of the way there.
The recipe for eating better is simple because eating simple foods is simply eating better.