Tag Archives: organic

Major Organic Brands, Like Kashi and Naked, Funding Anti-GMO Labeling Campaigns

It’s natural to assume the good in someone, or something. In this case, a brand. Brands like Kashi, Naked, Alexia, Larabar, and Silk have spent millions in marketing and packaging so that we’re comfortable with their do-gooder, earth-friendly, clean and organic food brand personas. These brands are the nemesis of classic grocery store junk. But they just may be the nemesis of conscious eaters everywhere, too, according to a new infographic produced by Cornucopia.org.

The vote in California next month on Prop 37, which would require labeling of GMO and GE food products, is as hot as the presidential election. That vote there, while only immediately effecting California, has the potential to create a new labeling standard across the country. As you can imagine, a GMO labeling law would require transparency where these brands have been able to slip under the radar previously. As well, where companies are the most concerned, it will cost them quite a bit of money to update labeling.


Right there in red and green, you can see which previously assumed supporters of natural, organic, clean foods are just a front for more secrecy behind the label. Dean Foods, parent of Horizon and Silk, has spent a quarter-million dollars to prevent labeling GMOs. Coca-Cola, with their Honest Tea and Odwalla brands, has spent 1.1 million dollars. Something about that doesn’t feel so honest. (more…)

Doctor Oz Chimes in on the Organic vs. Conventional Produce Debate

Dr. Oz Show LogoBe sure to tune in to Dr. Oz onThursday, October 4 for a segment dedicated to the controversy surrounding organic foods. Are the headlines true, that they are not any more nutritious than conventionally grown foods? Are organic foods not worth the cost? Dr. Oz speaks to a pediatrician who is angry about what he calls the public’s deception concerning the dangers of pesticides in food.

Recent news stories have reported on studies showing few differences between organic and conventional produce. Other studies, however, have found links between pesticides and ADHD, early-onset puberty, and even arsenic-laced rice. See what the doctor thinks about the benefits and misconceptions of organically grown fruits and vegetables. (more…)

Organic vs Non-Organic: Battle of the Packaged Foods

We’ve all been at the grocery store, holding up two products trying to decide which is better for our health. With miles-long ingredients lists and confusing nutrition labels, picking the right foods for our families can be a daunting task – especially when cost is a major consideration. Throw in the factor that organic is supposedly superior and it’s enough to make your head spin.

We’ve been curious for a while now if organic packaged foods are really that much better for you than their non-organic counterparts. A little research proved that our suspicions about organic food were confirmed: they really are the healthier choice on the basis of nutrition.

Yes, the organic Oreos may cost more and taste different than the non-organic version, but we found that organic foods concentrate much more on whole, natural ingredients and leave out the artificial and highly-processed items that are ultimately harmful to our health. If cost wasn’t a factor, we’d tout organic all the way. But we’ve comprised a slideshow with a side-by-side comparison of ingredients and nutrition so you can decide which products are worth going organic for.

While organic packaged foods are often healthier than non-organic, always keep in mind that eating a balanced diet of whole, natural foods and keeping processed foods to a minimum is always the best diet approach.

4 Healthier Ways to Satisfy Nagging Pregnancy Cravings

By Emily Wade Adams, CNC for Natal-Nutrition.com

Chips, crackers, doughnuts, bagels, candy … these easy-to-grab comfort foods are a quick way to relieve pregnancy’s hunger pangs. But caving to your cravings isn’t necessarily healthy for your baby. Processed foods in particular are some of the most unhealthy and potentially dangerous options for moms-to-be, because they make your baby more likely to have health problems. According to Dr. Weston A. Price, your baby is at risk for health problems even if you ate processed foods before conception, even if it wasn’t you but the baby’s father who ate them, and even if you ate well but the foods you consumed were grown in depleted soil (Singer, 2004).

What are processed foods, and why are they so bad for you? They’re food products that have been manipulated, refined, enriched and/or preserved – in short, almost anything that has been changed from its natural state. Most packaged foods are processed. If you read a label and don’t recognize the ingredients, it’s likely that food has been processed. Items in the center of the grocery store tend to be processed. Generally, foods are processed to lengthen their shelf life and are packaged in a way that’s convenient for us to grab on the go. (more…)

Organic Produce May Not Be Any Healthier

When you hit the produce section of your grocery store, do you opt for the conventional products or do you head over to the smaller section of organic produce? Is one really healthier for you than the other? Organic costs more, that’s for sure. But does that price equal healthier food? A recent study is saying, no, not really.

The Associated Press reported about a new study conducted by doctors from Stanford University. The doctors put the great debate over organic and non-organic to the test. Based on their extensive testing, they found very little evidence supporting the high cost of organic food as a means to achieve better health.

While it’s true that a diet high in organic fruits and vegetables will lower one’s exposure to pesticides, the produce grown conventionally contains only a small amount of pesticides that’s within safety limits.

Some of the testing in the study included monitoring the pesticide levels in children. Those on organic diets did show a lower level of pesticides, however, the amount was still very low for those who ate conventional produce. In other words, the study didn’t warrant a major case for organics. (more…)

Want a Healthy Kids Menu? Hyatt Figured it Out with For Kids By Kids

I’m kind of a soap box mom when it comes to kid nutrition. I just can’t imagine few things being more important than my daughter’s health and development of her eating habits. Like good manners, potty training, and a wild imagination, they are skills that will last her a lifetime.

Her very favorite foods include avocado, blackberries, shrimp, black beans, and peaches. She thinks dried apricots and pistachios are candy. And on the rare occasion we get a “real” treat, a bite or two of a shared ice cream cone is suffice. Given all of this, imagine how hard it is to take her out to eat with us. Between my refusal to give her fried junk, and her disinterest in eating it, the standard fare of a kids menu leaves a heck of a lot to be desired.

That is, until you visit the Hyatt. I often rave about the breakfast at The Hyatt’s Harvest Kitchen here in Wichita, calling it the best breakfast in the city. It’s the only Harvest in the country, but Executive Chef Paul Freimuth says another is in development in California with plans to expand further. I should think they’d want to – with locally sourced ingredients and attention to quality, the entire menu is like a work of art. While my daughter loves the yogurt bar, fresh fruit, and scrambled eggs on Sunday mornings, the Hyatt is now offering her and other kids many more options at breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

This past July, Hyatt introduced its For Kids By Kids menu. It’s a kid-friendly menu that is super healthy, to satisfy parents, and full of foods kids like best, to keep the little ones happy. Hyatt didn’t just dream it up on a whim, they partnered with 11-year-old Haile Thomas, a young chef who is committed to the health of herself and her peers. (more…)

Beware Carrageenan, a Food Additive Common in Organic Products

By Abra Pappa for Nutritious America

If you are into reading labels then you have most likely seen an ingredient called carrageenan. It specifically appears on the label of many organic processed food products.

What is Carrageenan?

Carrageenan is a polysaccharide derived from red seaweed and it has molecular qualities similar to plastic. Seaweed sounds innocent enough; it’s natural right? Absolutely, as a matter of fact, many types of seaweed are commonly used as a medicinal food to support many conditions like thyroid disorder and even cancer. However, not all seaweed is created equal and the process in which carrageenan is extracted from the red seaweed has become the cornerstone of a debate about allowed ingredients in organic products. (more…)

5 Places People Waste the Most Money on Their Health

David Bakke writes about tips for improving health and saving money on Money Crashers Personal Finance.

In 2009, Americans spent almost $2.5 trillion on health care, and that number is expected to almost double by the year 2019. As these costs escalate, it’s obvious that a healthy lifestyle can save you money. But the question is, how much money should you spend to live healthy? Fortunately, there are many ways to cut back on health expenses without cutting back on health benefits.

1. Gym Membership

Unless your monthly gym bill serves as your only motivation to exercise, a gym membership is usually not worth the expense. You can walk or jog in your neighborhood, bike at a local park, and swim in public pools. You can also pick up a cheap set of dumbbells for strength building. In fact, skipping the gym can easily save $500 annually.

2. Organic Food

Organic foods cost roughly 30% more than their traditional counterparts. So if you’re spending the money on organic, make sure it’s worth it and research which are safe to buy conventionally grown instead. For example, some conventionally grown fruits don’t contain as many pesticide residues as others. Whereas conventionally grown apples repeatedly test as some of the “dirtiest” fruits on the market. Avocados, onions, cantaloupes, asparagus, and eggplants should be safe to buy non-organic. (more…)

Wanderlust Yoga Festival Offers Yoga, Music, Wine and Gourmet Organics

It is no wonder some yogis these days have acquired rock star status. There are places where yoga enthusiasts eager to deepen their practice can not only take a class from their most praised yoga teacher, they can do it along a backdrop of musical talents such as Ani Difranco, Ziggy Marley, and the Thievery Corporation. As modern yoga teachers join forces with hip and groovy musicians, the old days of dry, serious, and esoteric yoga gatherings make way for the new age, trendy yoga festivals where everyone can feel like a rock star.

Wanderlust, a mind-blowing music and yoga extravaganza, began as a reason to throw a really fun party and invite people who share like-minded ideals such as yoga, the arts, spirituality, environmentalism and sustainability, and organic farming. Husband and wife duo Jeff Krasno and Schuyler Grant put their heads together with their good friend from college, Sean Hoess, and the dream of creating something profound and enlightening became a reality.

Taking place in the gorgeous settings of Vermont, Colorado, California, and Canada, Wanderlust not only combines yoga with music, it also brings in top chefs and wine makers. A typical day might include taking power yoga with Baron Baptiste and then dancing to the trance-like sounds of the Thievery Corporation. Or perhaps you gain motivation from the brilliant karma yogi activist Seane Corn while she shares the stage with poet, composer, and musician Michael Franti. However you choose to spend your day, know that you can also be sipping organic wine and tasting professionally prepared gourmet food whenever the mood strikes.

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8 Reasons For Eating Local

Broad Ripple Farmers Market, IndianapolisSometimes as bloggers, we write things that we want other people to read, and sometimes we write things that we need to remember ourselves. Sometimes when you are making a change, it helps to say it out loud to someone else to make it more real for yourself. Today, I need to say out loud that I am re-committing to eating local food (Everyone falls off the wagon at some point.) These are eight reasons why you might always want to eat local.

1. Allergies Eating locally made honey is supposed to be good for your allergies because the bees are using the local pollen, what is likely causing your allergic reactions. It is the same theory as a vaccine – if you are given a little, your body learns how to fight it, so you develop an immunity. Plus, you’re much more likely to get actual honey than at a store.

2. The real scoop Often when shopping at farmers markets, you get to talk to the actual farmers to get the real scoop on the types of chemicals were used, where animals reside, and what they are fed. Just because something is labeled organic does not mean that chemicals have not been used.

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