Monday, April 13, 2009

Processed Food

As I stated earlier, the SAD diet is about 45% animal products and 45% processed food. What exactly comes under the heading of "processed" foods?  Many foods have non-food products in them  , like phosphoric acid. Other things lurking around in our food  are  ingredients we should always try to avoid like hydrogenated oils and high fructose corn syrup.  And then there are all the artificial flavorings and preservatives.    Obviously all junk food would go into this category.  Twinkies, sodas, candy, pastries , hot dogs and other processed meats, canned foods, boxed foods, bottled foods, salad  dressings, frozen dinners, frozen desserts, chips , cookies...practically everything from a supermarket that is in or near the middle , or in an aisle, or on a shelf usually.   Stick to the fruit and vegetable area and you'll be better off.

Breakfast cereal is  processed, even from health food stores, if it's in the shape of flakes or rounds or whatever. A better breakfast choice would be oatmeal with some raisins or bananas in it.  A small amount of soy or rice milk (they're processed too!) If it's not sweet enough use Agave (pure sweet syrup from cactus)  Fresh fruit is a good choice for breakfast.  Any breads should be whole grain, not made with white flour.  Forget the bacon and eggs.

Juices, like orange juice are processed.  (and pasteurized and heated and shipped and stored) It's best to have fresh squeezed or a combination of fresh vegetable juice (of your choice)

Oils...not so healthy.  Even though they are not trans fats, and not solid at room temperature,and are cold pressed extra virgin,  they are frowned upon by all the top plant- based nutritionists and doctors, and I'll explain why in a post specifically about oils.

Sugar... It deserves it's own chapter. I read recently that the average American consumes about 149 pounds of sugar a year.  That's THREE large 50 pound bags!
One interesting trend that has been taking place over the years, is the proliferation of processed "healthy"  vegetarian and Vegan foods.  Almost every supermarket these days has a section of Vegan deli meats, fake cheese, frozen "chicken" nuggets, soy and rice and almond milk, soy ice-cream. It's easier than it ever has been to find Vegan foods wherever we go.  It's been said that the "crossover" food industry is the best thing that's ever happened in the Animal Rights movement.    Many animals lives are saved by being able to enjoy foods that taste like animals but are made from plants.  But many now question whether these foods are healthy also, just as the true junk food processed foods are deemed unhealthy.  In my opinion, they are far better than the equivalent animal product. There is still no cholesterol or saturated animal fats in them.  They definitely make  great crossover foods to help carnivores kick the meat eating habit.   But we should eat them sparingly, especially as we become more and more aware that unprocessed whole foods are healthier all around.  Eat as much whole , real food as you can, and supplement it with the crossover foods and Vegan processed foods as you see fit...but keep in mind that the less the better!


  1. Thanks for all the great information.


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