HEALTH AT EVERY SIZE
Health at Every Size - these are the buzz words around the internet these days. Are you healthy? Do you want to be healthier?
What is health? The World Health Organization defined health in its broader sense in 1946 as "a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity". Being healthier doesn't mean losing weight. To you it might mean:
- eating better (such as reducing processed foods)
- exercising/moving more
- stopping smoking
- working on that depression
We would like to introduce you to a blog series on Intuitive Eating. This blog is written by Danielle Lithwick M.A., founder of Move Out Of Madness. With over a decade of combined education and experience in nutrition, yoga, psychology, addiction counselling, mindfulness, and personal training, she believes that how we move and how we eat should nourish not only our bodies but also our minds. Her mission is to teach people how to take the simpler and saner approach to exercise and eating using a personalized, skills-based, and compassionate approach to change. Her coaching services are rooted in non-diet and weight-neutral approaches to health and in the values of education, empowerment and enjoyment. She lives in Ottawa, ON Canada.
To read the series of blogs click the links below:
- Principle #1: Reject The Diet Mentality
- Principle #2: Honor Your Hunger
- Principle #3: Make Peace With Food
- Principle #4: Challenge The Food Police
- Principle #5: Feel Your Fullness
- Principle #6: Discover The Satisfaction Factor
- Principle #7: Cope With Your Emotions Without Using Food
- Principle #8: Respect Your Body
- Principle #9: Exercise - Feel The Difference
- Principle #10: Honor Your Health With Gentle Nutrition
We are very happy to announce that we have a Registered Dietician on staff who will be writing our Health At Every Size series as well as answering a reader's question each month. You can read about Shari's philosophy and experience on our staff page. If you have a question for Shari, please email us at email@example.com.
Disclaimer: This advice is not intended to be a substitute for, nor does it replace, professional medical, health or nutritional advice.
Sweet taste, bitter truth: Facts about high fructose corn syrup
Corn on the cob is a plant = it exists in nature. So, logically, a syrup made from corn should be fine in moderation (if not healthy) ... Right?
Well, that's like saying 'eating rat poison in moderation' is fine. Yes, this makes no sense - my point exactly.
Take home message: High fructose corn syrup, or HFCS, is not natural. It should not be consumed. AT ALL. Period.
(I believe that my job is to tell you the hard, cold facts so that you can make your own informed decisions. I don't sugar-coat my advice - no pun intended.)
What is high fructose corn syrup?
HFCS is made from GMO corn which is first ground into corn starch. This starch is then processed into corn syrup to which synthetic enzymes are added. This process increases the sweetness of the syrup.
Scary facts about high fructose corn syrup
- HFCS is not natural. Even the FDA agrees with this since chemical agents are used in the production of HFCS. (And because analysis of HFCS indicates presence of chemicals).
- HFCS often contains mercury due to chlor-alkali products used during manufacturing.
- Big Food is spending a fortune trying to 'prove' that HFCS is safe for consumption. They even have many scientists and reputable 'health experts' on their payroll.
Top 5 reasons why you want to avoid high fructose corn syrup
- It promotes accumulation of fat around the organs, a.k.a. visceral fat, a type of fat that promotes inflammation and can contribute to many autoimmune diseases. Visceral fat also leads to insulin resistance and can worsen hormonal imbalance.
- HFCS increases hunger - it tricks the brain into thinking that we're not full and this reduces leptin levels. Leptin is a hormone that helps us feel full.
- Excess fructose weakens the immune system since it increases inflammation. Since neutrophils, immune cells that help us fight disease, need to take care of this inflammation, they're less available to combat bad bugs.
- HFCS damages the liver and increases risks of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
- Research shows that women who consumed just one soda per day were 74% more likely to develop gout compared to those who rarely did.
How can you avoid high fructose corn syrup?
Good news: foods containing HFCS are loaded with empty calories and various artificial ingredients. In other words, when avoiding HFCS, you'll also be avoiding lots of other nasties.
The easiest way to avoid HFCS is to read labels especially on products like:
- Canned fruits
- Jams and jellies
- 'Natural' and 'Lite' foods
- Sodas and sweetened drinks
- Commercial sauces, crackers, candies, spreads, salad dressings
- Commercial foods with added flavorings or assorted seasonings
Other names of high fructose corn syrup:
- Corn syrup
- Crystalline fructose
- Glucose-fructose syrup
- Fructose syrup
- Tapioca syrup
- Fruit fructose
- Dahlia syrup
Ultimately the choice to consume or avoid HFCS is all yours but I'm curious: on which side of the fence are you when it comes to high fructose corn syrup?
Submitted by: Shari
Feel free to post about your own journey with Health At Every Size, any questions you may have or suggestions for future topics on our Facebook page or our Forums. Shari also has her own Facebook page .