1/16/08

Did you hear the news?




FDA Issues Documents on the Safety of Food from Animal Clones
Agency Concludes that Meat and Milk from Clones of Cattle, Swine, and Goats, and the Offspring of All Clones, are as Safe to Eat as Food from Conventionally Bred Animals
http://www.fda.gov/bbs/topics/NEWS/2008/NEW01776.html

Hummmm, makes me think about the food I eat....and thankfully don't eat. I really try hard to eat natural and fresh food. I don't do 100% for a few reasons. I feel fruits (with eatable outsides), most veggies and meats should be organic. However, I don't have a high enough disposable income to invest in all organic products. I look for organic brands whenever possible (especially peanut butter, which has hardly any ingredients) but I always look for foods which have to be refrigerated. Karel and I have a shelf which holds all our processed/boxed foods. We always have Oats, instant oatmeal (Weight Watchers Quakers, my favorite), nuts, dark chocolate (Karel would kill me if I didn't let him have his chocolate..which is heart healthy for you in moderation) and a big container of a mix of 3 cereals on our shelf. I find having a mix of cereals is better than having just one. I combine a high fiber cereal, a low calorie puff cereal (which takes up space) and a regular cereal (cheerios, special K, Life, Total, etc.). By combining the cereal you get a lot more variety (I'm all about a little of everything) and you can cut back on calories with the puff cereal taking up most of the space. In our 'fridge, however, I always have veggies, fruits, eggs, egg substitutes, cheeses, lean meats, soy and skim milk, PB, healthy condiments (salsa and hot sauce are our favorite toppers), fat-free cream cheese, spray butter, high-fiber whole grain bread, raisins, Lit n' fit yogurt, string cheese, sugar-free syrup and low-sugar jelly. I'm sure I forgot some things but I keep the same foods in our fridge all the time. I absolutely LOVE cooking and presentation of the food is everything to me! If it looks good, you are more likely to take your time when eating. I am also an experimenter so I'm always up for trying new recipes, in a healthy fashion. When Karel buys the food, he usually gets an educational lesson about the food he bought but he is always a good sport and he loves to learn about food. At first I was worried about talking to Karel about food but I was quick to learn that he actually wanted to know about food labels, ingredients,etc. I'm not trying to be obsessive about food but I really enjoy educating people. For example, the other day Karel brought home a plastic container of Muffins. First thought...plastic container means "this product can sit on the shelf for a while!" However the product had a label which read "No trans fat". So I went to the ingredients to see if hydrogenated oil was listed. There was no hydrogenated oil in the muffin. According to the FDA a product may have .5g or less/serving of trans fat and still list zero trans fat on the label. So check the ingredients for Hydr. oil. If it is there, there is an addition of trans fat (liquid fat turned solid through the addition of hydrogen. Not heart healthy!!). Karel said he bought the muffin because of the label which listed "high in fiber, no trans fats". I went to the nutrition label and there was a lot of fiber but when looking at the calories, there were 280 calories in the small little cranberry, bran muffin! That's almost a meal and hardly filling enough to keep you satisfied for an hour. I absolutely love when Karel brings home new foods because it is an opportunity for me to educate and become open minded to new foods. There is a time for everything and I'm not the person who will tell someone to NEVER eat x-food. However, you must always look at labels to become aware of calories, serving sizes (another big problem in foods when the calories are listed for 1/2, 1/3 or 1/4 of the serving of the food you want), ingredients and nutrients. My best advice for athletes is to break down your daily total calories (around 2000-2600, considering you are only exercising moderately 1-2 hours a day) into 3 meals and 2-3 snacks. This way you can break down each meal (ex. 400-500 calories per meal) and focus on healthy macronutrients which are healthy, filling and advantageous for your workouts. Next, add 100-200 calories to your daily intake for each exhaustive hour of exercise you are doing that day. And lastly, add 100-150 calories for pre training and post-training snacks for each hour you are doing a day. By having a starting number and then timing your snacks with your training and not overeating at meals, you should be using the right fuels at the right time to fuel your workout. I won't digress about carbs and proteins at the moment but if anything, I'd be weary to eat anything with the word "cloned" in front of it!