Thursday, March 12, 2009

Today I Discovered Dubya's Post-Presidential Vocation

At least, I thought so. Turns out the item on the label I was reading is a legitimate term, even if it sounded like a new Bush-inspired attempt at a neologism.

Sometime just before Her Bad Mother blogged about the latest and worst (sorry for the weird formatting, but the article is down a ways, scroll for the info) thing about HFCS (aside from all the previously bad correlations), I had decided to really start cutting it out of our diets as much as possible. When I heard mercury is also associated with HFCS, I began to even more seriously cut it out, given LMNOB's Sensory Integration Dysfunction and the tie between mercury and all things Autistic Spectrum Disorder.

It is hard to completely get HFCS out of your diet as basically all condiments have it, most store bought breads do (at the time I began scouring labels at the supermarket even the pricey Orowheat breads had it on their label; however, they have since eliminated it as an ingredient in the production of their bread. Also, I recommend Nature's Pride, it is HFCS free, cheaper than Orowheat on average and tastes much better than the Pepperidge Farms natural breads! No, not being paid by them to say so, just think that if people are serious it is helpful to know what's what out there.), etc., etc. So, I've honed in on the things we eat EVERY day, like breads and cereals, lunchbox items, "juices" and the main ingredients in my cooking staples. I have yet to buy organic ketchup for pure budgetary reasons, but in general we have really reduced this culinary evil's presence in our lives.

It takes time as one has to really read labels (and know HFCS's other names as some companies are pulling out the Canadian/European names for this bad boy) and it can cause a bit more strain on the pocket book, but not necessarily if you are a smart shopper (see that time thing above though).

Anyway, all of that to tell you that today while I was at the grocery store reading labels, I hit a new term....

Interesterified soy oil.

Firefox wants so badly for me to correct that sucker, because it doesn't recognize it as a word either.

My first thought was, "AHA! George W. has gotten himself a job as a food label writer." Then, "WTH does interesterified mean, anyway? That they've made boring oil more interesting? So ambiguous, these newfangled food terms."

We all know that trans-fats are bad because they are genetically modified fats that take an unsaturated fat (read: liquid) add hydrogen (hence hydrogenated and/or partially hydrogenated) and make it a saturated (read: crisco-like solid) fat that will clog your arteries much faster and more seriously than naturally saturated fats (i.e. butter and meat fats....mmmm...meat fat, lol. This prego is seriously craving one fine ribeye right now) will. Oh, wait, you didn't know that? Well now you know and "knowing is half the battle." (GI Joe! Sorry, it's that pop culture reference thing I do)

And since most of us know that trans-fats are bad and why, a lot of food companies have eliminated them....or just reduced them to 0.something grams in their serving sizes so that they can somewhat completely misleadingly boast "0g Trans-Fats in every serving!" Seriously, even with reading labels people miss this, because they read the "Nutrition Facts" rather than the ingredients. Be thorough, folks, be thorough, because somehow many of these food-producers are claiming no trans-fats in their products, yet "hydrogenated/partially hydrogenated" still shows on the ingredients. And they ain't natural.

So interesterified fats.... It's a whole new ball of wax. And also another seemingly unhealthy one. Makes me want to cook everything from scratch now. Which makes my head hurt. Can nothing be easy yet safe?

© 2008 Ramblings of a Red-Headed Step-Child. All Rights Reserved


  1. Oh, lawdy. Now MY head hurts. Not up for more head hurtage. GAH.

  2. I think that the answer is "no".

    And the hammer falls hardest on the poor, naturally, since organic and fresh are more expensive than non-organic and canned or frozen or pre-prepared.

  3. HBM - Squeeee!!! You are like a celebrity to me and you commented on my site! I know, I am a dork :)

    Liz - I KNOW, and lemme tell you, it breaks my heart. Did you ever read the book Food Politics? Talks about this very thing and more.