Food Is Not Your Enemy

Save Money by Eating Your Way to Good Health

“At first blush, the notion of eating our way out of huge public health challenges like obesity, diabetes and heart disease may seem an overly simplistic and idealistic fix for complex, multifaceted problems. But health experts say that, in fact, an apple a day does keep the doctor away, and that many studies prove it.”

Nice affirming news from The New York Times. Companies like Safeway are realizing that health care costs are getting out of control, and are now focusing on preventative care. So many of today’s “expensive” diseases–obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and cancer–are tied to diet and lifestyle choices and are quite preventable. And so, the reasoning goes, if an employer can encourage its workers to eat things like vegetables and whole grains instead of Doritos and McDonald’s, costs for health insurance will ultimately go down or at least stabilize. And it’s working.

The article acknowledges that it’s easier said than done to make dietary and lifestyle changes. There’s so much conflicting info about nutrition out there–which should you listen to?

That’s why I do what I do. As a holistic nutrition counselor, I help my clients discover what works for them, and I support them every step of the way–holding them accountable, but also serving as their biggest cheerleader. You can make lasting changes. And you don’t have to do it alone.

Is BPA a Problem?
November 24, 2009, 10:14 am
Filed under: food politics, Vegetables | Tags: , , ,

From the December issue of Consumer Reports magazine: “The chemical Bisphenol A, which has been used for years in clear plastic bottles and food-can liners, has been restricted in Canada and some U.S. states and municipalities because of potential health effects. The Food and Drug Administration will soon decide what it considers a safe level of exposure to Bisphenol A (BPA), which some studies have linked to reproductive abnormalities and a heightened risk of breast and prostate cancers, diabetes, and heart disease.”

Given this article, I was pretty disturbed to see the following note sent by Muir Glen recently to a member of my family who was concerned about BPA. Muir Glen is a company whose canned organic tomato products I use regularly:

“Thank you for contacting Muir Glen regarding bisphenol-A in food packaging. Bisphenol-A is a critical component of protective coatings used with metal food packaging and provides important quality and safety features to canned foods.

Scientific and government bodies worldwide have examined the scientific evidence and consistently have reached the conclusion that BPA is not a risk to human health. Recent examples include comprehensive risk assessments in Japan and Europe and a review by an independent panel of experts organized by the Harvard Center for Risk Analysis. The can coatings used in Muir Glen packaging comply with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration requirements for use in food contact applications. These coatings have long played an essential part in food preservation, helping to maintain wholesomeness, nutritional value, and product quality.

We work closely with our suppliers to ensure that all of the food ingredients and packaging materials we use are fully in compliance with U.S. Food and Drug Administration requirements and meet our high quality standards.

We will continue to monitor this situation. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us. Your questions and comments are always welcome. For more information on the safety of metal food containers, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration press office may be contacted at (301) 436-2335.”


Lori Quinn
Consumer Services

Really, Muir Glen? People who buy organic products largely buy them to avoid such questionable compounds as BPA. If other companies can package their products without BPA, so can you. Please stop justifying this.

Click here to find out how to take part in “Prevention not Prescriptions.”

Snack Bars: Safe or Scary?
November 19, 2009, 3:47 pm
Filed under: Food/Health Blogs, Fruits, Grains, Sweets | Tags: , , , ,

There are so many different kinds of snack bars available that pretty soon they’re going to need their own aisle at the supermarket. Can any of them be considered a wholesome snack? Or are they basically glorified candy bars? Read my latest column on AOL’s ParentDish to find out.

Chicken: Safe or Scary?

We’ve been hearing for years that we should cut down on the amount of red meat we eat. Since these exhortations began, Americans have largely been plunging their forks into chicken instead — to the tune of 8 billion birds a year — because it’s healthier, right? Well, that depends. Read my latest column on AOL’s ParentDish to find out.

Avoiding Holiday Weight Gain
November 3, 2009, 11:49 am
Filed under: Food/Health Blogs, weight loss | Tags: , , ,

Halloween is over, and the fear has officially begun. We’re moving into the season of overstuffing ourselves.

Dr. Andrew Weil offers some sensible tips on approaching the upcoming gorgefest. Read them here.

November 2, 2009, 2:59 pm
Filed under: Exercise, weight loss | Tags: , ,

Do you hate exercise? Then go out for a walk. Walking is one of the best forms of exercise, it’s free, and easy.

I for one am not a big fan of exercise. There. I said it. I do like yoga, but I don’t go to class multiple times a week, largely because of the expense. I keep active between classes by walking as much as I can. You just want to make sure you walk briskly–no window shopping for shoes.