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Natural Awakenings South Jersey

Not Getting Lost While Eating Healthy

Feb 28, 2022 09:00AM ● By Nancy Seigle

by Matt Preston 

   We should never bite off more than we can chew when it comes to food and nutrition, and we welcome, in advance, shoehorning that idiom into this initial suggestion. This is all to say that eating healthy isn’t always that clear cut, but, it’s certainly as easy to do so today as it’s ever been. However, there are still aspects of attempting to really dig into what we’re consuming that should be looked at twice. 

   First, if someone is unable to pronounce one of the ingredients of boxed macaroni, either to oneself or out loud, that’s a problem. If one of the components of the Wendy’s French fries sounds like it should be a science fiction character, that’s also a problem. If we notice that the pear we wanted to treat ourselves to was washed with a chemical that has more consonants than a Soviet Union-era East German car lot, that’s probably a problem, too. 

   Thankfully, there are plenty of solutions, and more than likely no more than a few feet away. Whether the smart phone or computer, not much time has to be put into learning what constitutes too much high-fructose corn syrup. (Hint: If it’s more than zero, it’s too much.) So, researching what we’re eating or that of people we cook or shop for is as easy as ever. We may also want to engage a couple of sources at the same time, while also double-checking to make sure they don’t rhyme with “schmonsanto” as, well, I’ve probably said too much. 

   Speaking of big, faceless, agrochemical conglomerates that make the Umbrella Corporation look like a Ma ‘n Pa startup; if there’s too much marketing that goes into what one is eating, it’s suggested to give it another look. Making food choices shouldn’t involve a campaign for one’s attention and money the way our vote is sought after by hucksters in November. If the flop sweat on a company’s spokesperson is as prevalent as those getting sick in their “test group,” it’s probably not a bad idea to think twice before taking that bite. 

   That’s all to say it’s okay if there’s some marketing and advertising that goes into a new recipe or product. People want to know the benefits to eating it, if it’s tasty, where to buy it and so on. But keeping things simple can never be a negative thing, especially if the company is genuinely attempting to do right by their customers. Making a profit is great too, which allows them to keep doing good work, which should speak for itself as opposed to needing an entire team to do so. 

   At the same time; no real amount of explanations and/or doublespeak can explain why some components of food making are available here in the states and not outside our borders. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) can only be blamed for so long before we start to wonder why we get winded going up two steps, and yet our Latvian cousin just ran a 440 on his 75th birthday. 

   Now that’s not to say all Latvians are healthy and the FDA isn’t a slow-moving monolithic bureaucracy that can’t be bought, but it is to say it’s never a bad idea to look a little deeper into why certain ingredients are banned in other countries, but readily available here. Especially when smaller companies and producers specifically excise these components, it doesn’t hurt to look into why exactly that is. 

   In the end, this is all coming from a non-foodie vegetarian; so, to assume any real planning goes toward my at-home dinners beyond PBnJ minute rice and apple sauce would be inaccurate. But this simplicity is brought forth from years of getting lost in the minutia and why taking a simpler approach to eating should be just that—simple. 

Matt Preston is a creative and professional writer from Gloucester Township in South Jersey. Writing is one of his passions, body, mind and soul wellness one of his goals and belief in destiny his continual motivation. His website and podcast can be found 






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