Tag Archives: organic

Regulation Nation: What Consumers Really Think About the Feds in Our Food

The question of whether or not the government should regulate the food industry seems like a simple one, but it’s really an incredibly complex topic. Variables like price, availability, variety of offerings, and quality of products are all involved. Also, there’s the issue of how much regulation the food industry should have. Should it all be regulated? None? Or maybe somewhere in the middle?

To help us make sense of the issue, Sullivan Higdon & Sink (SHS) has produced its latest White Paper, Regulation Nation. Through their research, they’ve learned the issue of food regulation comes down to a lot more than a simple yes we should have it, or no we shouldn’t.

regulation pros and cons

Regulation Benefits: Food is safer, healthier, better-quality.

Regulation Negatives: limit choices, restrict freedoms, and ultimately drive up costs.

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Food Patriots is the Food Movie For Everyone, Improving Health 10 Percent at a Time

food patriots

Food Patriots is the food movie for people who aren’t in to food movies. It takes a simple, non-preachy approach to the topic at hand; which is ultimately eating better, healthier food.

The documentary centers on Jeff and Jennifer Spitz and their two sons, Sam and A.J. A few years ago, Sam got sick after eating contaminated chicken. What should have been an easily-treated case of food poisoning was actually an antibiotic resistant bacterial infection that caused the football player to lose an alarming 30 pounds in 4 weeks.

After the health scare with their son, Jennifer knew the family had to make a change. Food Patriots follows the family as they make small, meaningful changes to their eating and shopping habits, finding plenty of other Food Patriots along the way.

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What Do Americans Eat? Kale, Gluten-Free, and Organics Top 2014 Food Trends

food statistics

Food trends come and food trends go. One year we’re all raving about Sriracha, the next we’re falling for the cronut. For the last 30 years, Parade has surveyed those trends and other American eating habits.

This year, foods like snack bars and frozen sandwiches have risen in popularity. As more people eat on the go, convenience foods are going to see a natural rise. According to Parade‘s survey:

  • 27 percent of main dishes made at home are frozen or ready-to-eat meals.
  • 80 percent of our meals are prepared at home, and over half of them are made from scratch or fresh ingredients.

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Pick a Pocket Full of Pawpaws: Sure to be the Hottest New “it” Fruit

pawpaws

Now is the time for “pickin’ up pawpaws and puttin’ ’em in your pockets” as the children’s chant goes. The best pawpaws are the fully ripe fruits that have fallen to the ground between mid-August and mid-October, perfect for stuffing your pockets or your face!

Pawpaws are the largest edible fruit native to the U.S. and are an indigenous plant to 26 states east of Nebraska, reaching from Florida to New York. The fruit was an important food for Native Americans and early settlers. Pawpaws graced George Washington’s table in colonial days. And even animals aren’t missing out on this delicious treat — squirrels, raccoons, possums, and bears happily feast on aromatic pawpaw flesh.

Pawpaws are large fruits, similar to mangoes or papayas, ranging in color from yellow to green with skin often flecked. When over-ripe, the skin will turn brown like a banana. They have big black seeds that are easy-to-remove, a custard-like texture, and a flavor that is related to bananas, mangoes and melons. They are known commonly as a poor man’s banana.

“It has a sweet, yet rather cloying taste….a wee bit puckery” is the way their taste was described by a botanist of yore.    (more…)

7 Basic Steps to Cleaner Eating Without Going Paleo

paleo-clean-eating

It’s quite the buzzword these days. Much like “organic,” “gluten-free,” or “free range,” you can’t avoid the term “clean eating” when looking to live healthier.

What’s all the fuss about eating clean? It goes hand-in-hand with the often fitness-inspired Paleo Diet, and the idea that we should all be consuming less processed food-like products and more real, whole, natural foods. Going Paleo can be a bit extreme for some, so clean eating is a little less structured and a little more attainable for anyone no matter how they get fit.

Here are 7 basic principles to clean eating:

1. Avoid processed and refined foods. 

This includes things like white flour, sugar, bread, and pasta. Enjoy complex carbs such as whole grains or Paleo alternatives such as almond or coconut flour as your base for baked goods. These Back to School Cookies are super clean, but you wouldn’t even know it!

2. Get label savvy. 

Eating clean typically promotes choosing less packaged foods, but when you do opt for anything with a wrapper, learn to read the label. The shorter the list the better. If you can’t pronounce the ingredient, then your body can’t either. (more…)

Kirstie Alley’s Organic and GMO Food Beliefs Don’t Align With New Jenny Craig Partnership

Kirstie Alley is back at Jenny Craig. That’s the big celebrity diet news of the week, and Kirstie is loud and proud about it. Would you expect anything less from her?kirstie alley

She’s “excited” to be back at Jenny Craig, saying she missed her consultant. It’s undoubtedly her most lucrative partnering with the brand yet. She spent much of the early part of the decade as the spokeswoman for Jenny Craig, losing a lot of her highly publicized weight. She left in early 2008, citing a desire to create her own brand. Today, that’s known as Organic Liaison. Today, it’s also no longer her brand.

Jenny Craig’s mother company, CI Holdings (which bought Jenny Craig from Nestle recently), not only signed Kirstie to rep the brand once again, but bought her company. Now the program is what Kirstie is calling “a hybrid approach,” as it will “very, very soon” be incorporating her Organic Liasion weight loss products in to the Jenny Craig menu of offerings.

“I can get to millions [of new customers] with this,” Kirstie told us in an interview yesterday. Initially, Jenny Craig customers will be offered Rescue Me, the most popular product in her supplement line. It’s something the actress has told us she drinks every day, throughout the day.

“If I wasn’t drinking Rescue Me, getting these specific nutrients and specific antioxidants, it would be two weeks and I’d be back to craving sugar and heavier foods,” she told us in an interview last January.

In that same interview she told me that she “worships energy and organic eating,” and that, at least to me, is where the plot thickens. Kirstie and I spent about an hour in her comfortably beautiful home in Wichita, Kansas last January, where the bulk of the conversation revolved around organics, GMOs, and other aspects of clean eating in the name of health. Something quite amiss from Jenny Craig foods. (more…)

Whole Foods Severs Ties With Chobani, Citing GMO Concerns

It’s another blow for Chobani as the year draws to an end. The popular Greek yogurt company will no longer be sold at Whole Foods stores starting in early 2014.

This move by Whole Foods is unrelated to the Chobani recall that happened earlier this year. In September, more than 100 people became ill after eating yogurt that had been contaminated due to Mucor circinelloides, a mold commonly found in dairy. Though frequently used to produce natural flavor compounds, the mold had been causing products to swell and bloat.

whole foods market

Chobani powered through the recall without much fallout and looked to a smooth end to a year that saw Greek yogurt making up 50 percent of all yogurt sales. That changed last Wednesday when Whole Foods announced they would no longer sell Chobani yogurt.

Whole Foods has said this decision is due to its desire to sell more non-GMO and organic yogurts. Chobani produces Greek yogurt made with milk from cows which are often fed GMO feed.

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Kirstie Alley Prioritizes Energy Over Weight as the Measure of a Healthy Lifestyle

Kirstie Alley approached the new year like a lot of us, by making resolutions. But unlike most who just whisper them in to the abyss of new year’s night, Kirstie puts pen to paper.

“I always sit down with a little notebook and I make many resolutions,” she said. She won’t name them because of superstition, but makes them regarding every aspect of her life. She lives by them for the year, but more than resolutions, Kirstie says, “I map out a game plan for everything I do.”

I recently sat down with Kirstie in her luxuriously comfortable home in the heart of one of the oldest neighborhoods in Wichita, Kansas; her home away from LA. We spent just over an hour casually talking about childhood obesity, her healthy lifestyle, chemicals in our foods, and of course her company Organic Liaison. To answer the question on most people’s minds – yes, she looked fantastic!

“I’m not skinny minnie, I look good if I’m wearing stretchy sixes or a genuine size six (which 20 years ago would have been a genuine size 8),” she told me.

She celebrated her 62nd birthday last week during a special appearance on Entertainment Tonight looking younger and better than ever. Of course, I had to ask, how does she do it, because it wasn’t just the cameras!

“I’m really happy, and that’s sort of the biggest key,” she said. Kirstie noted that she’s not a drinker, she thinks alcohol can really age a person, and that she’s always taken really good care of her skin, having stopped being a “total sun worshipper” at 25.

Now she worships energy and organic eating, and there’s no doubt that’s playing a role in slowing the aging process for her. (more…)

In Organic We Trust Food Documentary Earns This Skeptic’s Seal of Approval

I’m pretty skeptical when there’s a new food documentary that hits the scene. I’ve been scared in to or out of so many things because of this genre. Since Morgan Spurlock first freaked us all out with Super Size Me, or once the revolution rose up with viewings of Forks Over Knives, I’ve learned to take all these films with a grain of salt and consider the source.

Today, a new food-doc film is being released to the masses. I got an early screening of In Organic We Trust, and reluctantly agreed to watch it and review.

I expected another film assuring me of the horrific dangers of pesticides from the mouth of one hippie farmer and/or some suited lobbyist swearing that those darn hippies are out of their mind, “there’s no need for organics, pesticides won’t hurt you.” About 10 minutes into the film I was impressed, engaged, and intrigued. In Organic We Trust was on to something. (more…)

Dr. Oz Calls Organic Eaters “Elite” and Promotes Canned Vegetables

Oh, Dr. Oz what have you done now? Just this week an article titled “What to Eat Now: The Anti-Food-Snob Diet” was released in Time Magazine. Dr. Oz wrote lengthy reasons as to why frozen and canned foods were just as healthy as organic products. A man’s entitled to his opinion, right? So what’s the big deal? Well, the organic community is up in arms because the good doctor used to be on their side promoting organic food as the safest, most healthy option. And when they say “used to be,” they mean like two months ago. It seems the famous doctor has got some explaining to do.

In the Time article Dr. Oz says there is very little difference between the produce at the farmers market and the products in the freezer section or canned food aisle.

Dr. Oz said, “After several years of research and experience, I have come to an encouraging conclusion: the American food supply is abundant, nutritionally sound, affordable and, with a few simple considerations, comparable to the most elite organic diets.”

Many people did not take kindly to being called “elite” because they have chosen to heed the advice of many experts and shop organic. Dr. Oz also referred to those who purchase organics as the 1%.

“Save the cash: the 99% diet can be good for you,” he wrote.

Interestingly though, writer and editor of NaturalNews.com, Mike Adams, pulled out one of Dr. Oz’s quotes from just two months ago. In October 2012, Dr. Oz stated, “so you’re being told organic food is no more nutritious than conventional and it’s not worth your extra money. Well I’m here to say that it is worth the investment. Why do I say that? Pesticides.” (more…)