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Random Reports and Reviews #3

April 2, 2008

Observations from the past couple weeks or so:

  • I joined the YMCA a couple weeks ago, and I’ve been going regularly – Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. I’m taking a Step class, and it’s totally kicking my ass. BUT – I’m not giving it up – it’s actually quite fun.
  • I’m working very hard to get myself on a preservative-free and additive-free diet. I refuse to eat anything that contains high-fructose corn syrup or partially hydrogenated oils. Those items are bad, bad, bad!
  • I got a free sample in the mail of South Beach Diet’s “Cherry Almond Granola Clusters”. It’s “granola” with cherry almond flavor – which actually tasted like sawdust liberally coated with cough syrup. Yuck. Here’s the ingredient list: ROLLED OATS, SOY PROTEIN ISOLATE, OLIGOFRUCTOSE (FOR FIBER), SOYBEANS, ALMONDS, SUNFLOWER SEEDS, DRIED CRANBERRIES (CRANBERRIES, SUGAR, SUNFLOWER OIL), SOY FLOUR, BROWN RICE SYRUP, SUGAR, CORN SYRUP, POLYDEXTROSE (FOR FIBER), OAT FIBER, FRUCTOSE, CHERRY JUICE CONCENTRATE, FRUCTOSE (FOR FIBER), SOYBEANS, ALMONDS, SUNFLOWER SEEDS, DRIED CRANBERRIES (CRANBERRIES, SUGAR, SUNFLOWER OIL), SOY FLOUR, BROWN RICE SYRUP, SUGAR, CORN SYRUP, POLYDEXTROSE (FOR FIBER), OAT FIBER, FRUCTOSE, CHERRY JUICE CONCENTRATE, DRIED CHERRIES (CHERRIES, SUGAR, GLYCERIN, RICE FLOUR), CONTAINS LESS THAN 2% OF GLYCERIN, FRACTIONATED PALM KERNEL OIL, SWEETENED CONDENSED NONFAT MILK (CONDENSED NONFAT MILK, SUGAR), TAPIOCA STARCH, NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR, COCONUT OIL, NONFAT MILK, SOY LECITHIN, BUTTER (CREAM, SALT), CINNAMON, LACTOSE, CALCIUM CASEINATE, SALT, SAFFLOWER OIL, MOLASSES, PHOSPHORIC ACID, CARRAGEENAN, MONO- AND DIGLYCERIDES, BHT AND POTASSIUM SORBATE (TO PRESERVE FRESHNESS), BAKING SODA. CONTAINS: SOY, ALMOND, SUNFLOWER SEED, MILK. MANUFACTURED ON EQUIPMENT THAT PROCESSES WHEAT AND OTHER TREE NUTS. That’s waaaaaaaaaaaaaay too many ingredients that I can’t pronounce – and I used to be a chemist!! Plus it tasted disgusting.
  • A much better alternative to the chemical sludge above is a nifty little product by a natural foods company called “Bear Naked” – it’s Vanilla Almond Crunch Fit Granola. It’s low in sugar, and is free of trans fats, hydrogenated oils, artificial flavors, and high fructose corn syrup – all the bad stuff I’m trying to avoid. I can honestly say it is one of the most fabulous things I’ve ever put in my mouth (watch it…).
  • Tonight’s dinner was a very simple grilled peppercorn-crusted filet mignon with a red wine-mushroom sauce. Took only 8 minutes on the good ol’ George Foreman grill (I’m a medium-rare kind of girl). Wendalicious!
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6 Comments leave one →
  1. Marlene permalink
    April 2, 2008 8:31 pm

    Dinner sounds delicious…wish I could afford filet mignon…sigh, another night of baked chicken for me!

    As long as you’re avoiding bad stuff, don’t forget aspartme and MSG. Also very bad for you.

    The South Beach product had sugar in it? I thought that was a low carb diet. Sugar is not low carb.

    Keep up the good work at the Y. In no time at all you’ll be breezing through that step class and looking for something more challenging!

  2. wendalicious permalink
    April 3, 2008 8:36 pm

    Oh, Marlene, I think sugar was the best ingredient in there! But, I think they can call it low-carb by calculating “net carbs” – which is carbs minus insoluble fiber – which they jack up by adding oligofructose and dextrose. It’s all a scam.

    I’m also trying to stop using Splenda – it’s hard to get off it. I’ve stopped drinking Diet Pepsi (sob), and I’m using fruit juice to sweeten my plain yogurt. It’s okay.

    And, I can’t eat MSG anyway – it gives me migraines. I always avoid that one. If a Chinese restaurant lies about “No MSG”, I always know…

    Thanks for the encouragement – I’m really enjoying my time at the Y.

    See you in a couple weeks…email coming with details…

  3. April 3, 2008 9:06 pm

    Huh? What? A couple of weeks? Or are you just visiting Marlene and not me, too?

  4. wendalicious permalink
    April 3, 2008 9:18 pm

    oh, both…the email’s on its way…

  5. Nicole F permalink
    April 4, 2008 2:50 pm

    Hi Wendy – Good for you with giving up HFCS. As you know, I can’t eat any type of fructose and the more I learn about HFCS, the happier I am that I can’t! If you ever want some suggestions on GOOD tasting food that is organic (natural)or without HFCS and other crazy preservatives, let me know. I have been avoiding HFCS for over three years now.

    Also, I want to highly recommend the book The Omnivore’s Dilemna by Michael Pollan. He is a great writer and he sheds a lot of light on where our food in America comes from and how it is made, etc. Did you know that most preservatives and chemical additives come from a hybrid version of corn? Freaky. Seriously – this book is so good I am going to read his two other books – The Botany of Desire and In Defense of Food.

    I will hopefully see you this upcoming Monday (April 7) – if we all figure out a place to meet!

  6. wendalicious permalink
    April 4, 2008 6:59 pm

    I read all 3 of those books – I am a HUGE fan. I just bought “In Defense of Food”, so I can loan it to you…if I see you Monday…

    And I’m always looking for good tasting food sans chemicals…

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