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Your Favorite Pumpkin Treats are Full of Hidden Sugar, Fake Flavor

pumpkins

It’s already started: the time of pumpkin-flavored everything. Though many are cynical about the abundance of pumpkin, there’s no denying its power as a product. It’s estimated that we spend around $300 million a year, mostly between September and November, on products that at least kind of smell and taste like fall.

Essentially, people are going bananas for pumpkin. In fact, it’s one of the only vegetables that can claim a fandom. The thing is, most of the pumpkin products you can find this time of year don’t contain any pumpkin at all, just fake, processed pumpkin flavoring.

Take for example the ever-popular Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks. The beverage doesn’t contain any actual pumpkin, just artificial flavoring. The same can be said for the new Pumpkin Spice Oreos and many other products that will appear on shelves in the next few weeks.
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70 More Calories in Baked Cheetos Than Crunchy and More Junk Food Hiding Behind Health Halos

I’ve often joked that the only reason baked chips are listed as healthier than their traditional counterparts is because you get less product per bag. Apparently, my jokes weren’t too far from the truth.

cheetos

We’ve discovered that Baked Cheetos in particular actually have 70 more calories than their crunchy counterparts. It’s an excellent example of how “positive” branding can make a consumer assume a product is healthy, even when it isn’t.

This is what’s known as a health halo. It’s the perception that one thing is healthy or has healthy qualities because something with similar qualities is healthy. Using the Cheetos example; we know baked foods are usually healthier than fried foods, so when consumers see the word “baked” on a label, they assume the product is better for them.

Health halos aren’t limited to Cheetos. You don’t have to search the grocery shelves too hard to find other foods getting more glory than they deserve.
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Why it’s OK to Celebrate Oreo’s 100th Birthday

Happy birthday to the Oreo cookie! There’s probably not an American kid around who hasn’t twisted, licked, dunked, and devoured. One of my favorite photos is of me at around two-years-old sitting on my dad’s lap dunking cookies in a shared glass of milk. He taught me to hold the cookie in the milk until it just starts to give way between your fingers and then drop it in your mouth. Important life lesson!

Look, these cookies are as processed as they come and don’t really have any redeeming qualities, other than tasting so darn good. But I, like so many, enjoy practicing a life of moderation. And that means that once or twice a year I’ll buy a small six-pack of Oreo cookies, fill a glass with skim milk, and share the treat with my husband.

That’s why I’m saying it’s OK to celebrate Oreo’s centennial.
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Diet Disaster: Nabisco Confirms the Triple Double Oreo

Triple Double Oreo cookie and packageFirst leaked by a Reddit user as a “pre-release product” to be tested for Nabisco, the Double Triple Oreo is the latest portion-bloated Oreo. Not unlike a Big Mac’s third bun, the new cookie will have a third cookie and two layers of creme, one vanilla and one chocolate.

Nabisco confirmed the rumor with the following statement sent to Today.com:

“This summer, Oreo will introduce a new ‘twist’ on the iconic cookie: the Triple Double Oreo. Three chocolate Oreo wafers with two layers of creme — one classic vanilla, and one chocolate. While we tried our best to safeguard this news, we couldn’t hold back the buzz.”

When these new and ridiculous products get announced, I usually try to estimate how bad it will be for you, based on the composite ingredients. Now, it’s not just a Double Stuf Oreo multiplied by two. One Double Stuf cookie contains 70 calories, and according to LiveStrong, 50 of those calories come from the frosting-like filling. So, each wafer in the Oreo has 10 calories.

  • (Three wafers x 10 calories) + (2 cream fillings x 50 calories) = 130 calories per Double Triple Oreo


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