Sunday, June 1, 2014

Shopping For Healthy Food Is A Challenge

As I have seriously undertaken my journey to eat healthier and have become more conscious of my food and beverage purchases, I've observed just how much of a challenge it is to eat and drink healthy (maybe that's why so many of us don't).

I find this to be particularly true when in the food markets and restaurants. Either the healthier foods are sparsely available or significantly more expensive than the foods that are not good for us also known as "junk food."  With the exception of the fruit and vegetable aisle, I have to literally hunt for foods that are sugar free or contain low carbohydrates. For example, to replace sodas, I've begun to drink unsweetened tea or water and have replaced any white bread or flour processed foods with wheat products. You would be surprised with the exception of Walmart, the hunt I have to go on to find 100% whole wheat bagels free of High Fructose Corn Syrup or unsweetened tea in a general supermarket. I am using these as an example, but it applies to other foods and beverages as well. It seems that those of us who are looking to eat more healthy either by choice or by force, have little available to us, the products are hidden away or are so deeply embedded in the products that are not the best for us that we cannot even find them. The choices are also usually very limited, i.e. sugar-free ice cream choices, etc. Smoothies have become popular and really are great for digesting fruits and vegetables, however, a small bag of frozen blueberries are actually more expensive than a bag of potato chips or cookies (they are already expensive, so can you imagine?)

As a part of my quest, I have begun researching and comparing the foods that were a part of my diet and the foods that I am now choosing to include in my diet, and boy, what an education I am getting. Foods and ingredients that I thought were okay for me to eat and drink actually had the potential to kill me.

For example, I love corn and corn products including foods and beverages that contain High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). As it turns out, HFCS is a number one killer, and it's in most of the foods and beverages that we consume daily.  I absolutely LOVED (did I say loved?) Pepsi and Coca-Cola and have been drinking it since I was a very young child and learned of its impacts on the body. It is also a killer (see below).

It makes one wonder, (also a reason for this post), if we really want people to be healthy? Is it by design that the foods and beverages that are the worst for us cost the least and are the most readily available? Is it by design that the healthier foods must be found after a treasure/scavenger hunt or not even offered in some restaurants/supermarkets at all? And we wonder why our American people are so sick (heart disease, diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc. etc. etc) and or obese?

Well, the job of this blog is to leave you with something to critically think about with the hopes that you will take action. I can't tell you what type of action to take; however, after considering some of the things to think about after reading the post, I would hope that some action is taken, even if it is nothing else than to pass this blog along to someone else who may do something even if you choose not to do so. The availability and costs of our healthier foods is certainly something we need to bring to the attention of store and restaurant owners and our legislators. It is clear to me that the welfare of human beings is not the priority but the making of the almighty dollar is. Let them be obese. Let them be sick as long as we are making a profit. Something to critically think about and as always, I invite you to hear me live each Saturday morning at 6 a.m. EDT on and WP88.7 FM as the host of The Reading Circle and to follow me on Twitter @thinkcritical01.

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