Free-From Food Products

Remember when our grandparents would rise before dawn, milk the cows, start plowing that open field, begin the planting for the next harvest, or just begin the long commute to their work across town if they lived in New York before everyone had a car? Their breakfast was sausage, bacon, potatoes, grits, biscuits, eggs, pancakes, pork chops, etc. I remember my grandmother fixing breakfast for us many times and there was more food on the table then we could eat in two days. We did not worry about fats, sugars or gluten in our diets back then. We needed a good balanced meal for the long day.

Today our work habits have changed and so have our diets. Very few people go to work on the farm and in the rural areas that require that type of breakfast anymore. Today we sit in large offices in tall buildings. We have exercise gyms, running paths and several other types of recreational avenues so we can keep in shape. If our ancestors were looking at us now they would get a good laugh. I spend most of my day on the computer but I also have three days a week to work out at the gym.

It is important that we eat healthy and that does not always mean fat-free and sugar-free. The new products that are supposed to be good for you might just not be as good as the health-focused consumers believe.

Free-from processed foods are not good choices. A fat-free cookie contains refined grains and sugar. It offers no nutrition. An avocado has high fat content but is much healthier than a fat-free processed energy bar. A sugar-free product can contain modified corn byproducts, artificial dyes and artificial sweeteners. The better selections of foods for the diet are real, whole foods.

Sugar-free products can contain less than 0.5 gram per serving. What they -do not tell you is sugar-free can contain calories and carbohydrates in large amounts. Read the labels to find out the sugar count for the product.

There are common substitutions for sugar in products. These products are not sugar-free. Aspartame, acesulfame-potassium, and sucralose – known as Splenda or sugar alcohols such as soritol and maltitol provide about half the calories of carbohydrates and sugar. The foods containing artificial sweeteners have very little nutritional value and are highly processed. Some low-carb snack products can cause gastrointestinal problems because of they contain sugar alcohols (like maltitol and sorbitol).

It might be a good idea to go back to nature. Eating the whole grains nature has provided for centuries has worked and we have survived. Do we really need sugar-free or fat-free foods? When I buy foods in the store I stay to the outside. There you can find your good non-processed foods. Fresh foods that provide the nutrition for our bodies to build immune systems and fuel our bodies for activities we have today.

Rice grain products have been around for 4,000 years. They are free of chemical byproducts and have high nutritional value. Check your diet and add foods that are natural, healthy and contain no byproducts. Our bodies need sugar, fat and other nutrients that we find in the natural foods the earth produces. Try rice flour the next time you want to make some biscuits, muffins or make some great rice noodles.