Most Berry Helpful Review Brands!

Check out all the brands still in the running for Most Berry Helpful Review Brands!

Califia-Almond-Milk - Copy

CALIFIA FARMS: Specializes in almond milk and grows their own using NON-GMO in SUSTAINABLE ways! They are vegan, gluten-free, and soy-free! 2016 is the year that they phase out carrageenan! They give a generous pour of almond milk and various fruit frescas and fruit aquas – have a great diy recyclable bottle to use – and provide the company with a great need! Try their Iced Coffee Almond Milk too!

World-Peas-All-Natural-Green-Pea-Snack - Copy

WORLD PEAS: I think you guessed it – this is a snack of peas! Chick peas, green peas, fava beans, and more! They are crunchy, and flavorful, and not too hard on the chips. They are vegan, NON-GMO, gluten-free, and kosher certified!

Saffron-Road-Simmer-Sauces

SAFFRON ROAD: What else can be said? This company has always striven to be as sustainable as possible, and while they are rarely vegan and sometimes vegan and mostly omnivorous, they work very hard to give the best care to all of their sourced meat. They are gluten-free, nut-free, and kosher!

Mulberry-Love-Organic-Mulberry-Juice - Copy

MULBERRY LOVE: Truly a refreshing drink and so wonderful to know that they harvest through sustainable means. They offer both non-organic and organic juices. They are dairy-free, gluten-free, nut-free, organic, soy-free, and vegan!

Cup4Cup-Gluten-Free-Baking-Mixes

CUP 4 CUP: Gluten-free aware and very gluten-free certified, Cup4Cup’s kitchen has prided themselves on being able to serve the public! They are gluten-free, kosher, and NON-GMO!

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IT REALLY WORKS. Write a great review anytime from Monday morning 12:00 AM PST to Sunday night 11:59PM PST! The most rated review during that specific week will receive a rebate for the full amount of that item. Click on their picture to see the rebate deal! Recruit your friends and family to create an account. They do not need to redeem a rebate, they simply just need to vote up your review! If they wish to cash in on the savings, simply refer them to your reference link (found in your app under Invite) and you can earn up to $2 each time someone new redeems a rebate under your number! Cashing out requires $5 in your balance minimum! And a most berry wonderful week to you all!

Author: Christine

New Survey Shows Plant-Based Milk is Preferred over Dairy!

 

califiafarmsinfographic

 

Taste, health and environmental/animal welfare concerns are top reasons cited for consuming plant-based milks in BerryCart/Califia Farms’ survey; over 50% of omnivores surveyed drink plant-based milks several times a week

Los Angeles, CA  January 18, 2016 – A new survey conducted by Califia Farms, one of the fastest growing natural beverage companies in the United States, and BerryCart, the app for organic, natural and non-GMO food rebates, indicates that plant-based beverages are no longer ‘niche’ and are rapidly entering the mainstream. The survey results mirror industry data that shows a dramatic increase in household penetration of non-dairy milks – from 27.3% in 2013 to 55% in 2015.

The survey, conducted online among over 2,500 BerryCart users in Q4 2015, asked respondents to identify themselves as either omnivore, flexitarian, pescatarian, vegetarian, ‘not able to mix milk and dairy,’ or vegan, and focused on why consumers are opting to drink plant-based milks.

READ and SEE more BELOW!:

PLANT-POWERED BEVERAGES: NOT JUST A VEGAN THING… NEW SURVEY SHOWS ALT DAIRY BEVERAGES ENTERING MAINSTREAM

Author: Christine

Thanks For a Wonderful Run with the BerryCart Box!

Thank you BerryCart users for having a trial run with our BerryCart Box! It didn’t reach our goals as we intended so we discontinued it, unfortunately, and refunded any users who wanted to try it out or continue the service! We do apologize for the inconvenience but we are so so glad that you all enjoyed it! These brands are still on the BerryCart Deals page! Yum!

Personally, have tried a good fair of these… I give them great ratings!

From a vegan who likes some good snacks:

– Beanfields: crunchy and tastes like Nachos with lots of good powder!
– Laughing Giraffe Chocolate Snackaroons: soft with total coconut and chocolate goodness… mm, and they come in travel size!
– I Heart Keenwah: crunchy but such a good good square… mmm!
– World Peas: vegan depends on the flavor but they are crunchy and easy to eat!
– Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts: absolutely perfect for salads, oatmeal, hot veg meals, noodles, rice, on their own, blended with cheese, topped onto juices and smoothies! travel size and full size!
– Simple Squares: it’s huge! it’s not tiny, that’s for sure. and it is so soft and delicious. yum!
– Kutoa: Crunchy, sweet, and nutritious, and very nutrient-dense! and I’m glad that they donate a bar to a hungry child in need too!

Don’t take it personally that I haven’t tried Pyure or Ips.. fruit and vegan are my excuses. 🙂

berrybox-app-promo

Author: Christine

Healthy Subscription Box!

 

 

The BerryCart Box

BerryCart is a new monthly subscription box that will allow people to try 9-10 organic, non-GMO, and all-around healthy products.  Enjoy new snacks and exclusive cash-back rebates to use in your app!

Sneak Peak: In the April box, we currently have 9 products, 5 are full-sized.  Here is the breakdown:

–        8 Non-GMO

–        5 Organic

–        6 gluten-free

–        4 Vegan

–        3 Kosher

–        4 Soy Free

–        5 Dairy-Free

berrybox-app-promo

Enjoy a $5 cash back rebate with our new BerryCart Box too, good for either 1 month or 3 month plan!

5-off-box-rebate

And…

Did you know that if you refer a BerryCart Box to a new subscriber that orders, that $5 is applied to your account?

Happy BerryCart’in!

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Author: Christine

The New BerryCart Box!

 

berrycartbox

 

Behold, the new BerryCart Box!

We haven’t strayed from our line of healthy food brands and we’ll continue on in this fashion, to bring you food items that are at least: non-GMO Project Verified, Organic, vegan, gluten-free, nut-free, soy-free and/or dairy-free! 

In addition to those, you can feel confident that nothing will have high-fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, artificial flavoring, artificial coloring, and preservatives!

 

Imagine…

The contents are healthy.
– You’ll find $10 worth of cash back rebates in your app that is pay-out-able.
– For each friend that uses your referral code when purchasing a BerryCart Box, YOUR account will be fitted with a $5 referral bonus!
– The same $2 referral bonus (that occurs with that friend using your referral code when signing up & redeems at least 1 rebate) still exists!
– You win on an exclusive produce deal that non-BerryCart Box users don’t!

subscription

CHOOSE from a bill-cycle of every month or every 3 months. You are able to cancel anytime!

 

Don’t miss out!

For a short time, we are also offering a special $5 cash back on any ONE box of the BerryCart Box!

cashback5

Author: Christine

The Truth of Omega 3s

Omega Fatty Acids have been touted as a nutritional powerhouses.  Omega-3, in particular, is probably the most talked about.  Decades of research has been devoted to discovering the health benefits of omega-3, and depending on the source, the output is different.

Omega 3 Sources

Omega 3 Sources

Where does Omega-3’s come from?

Omega-3 is a type of fat that is derived from both plant and animal sources, most notably from krill and fish oil.  Omega-3 derived from marine animals such as fish and krill provide eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which are mostly promoted for their protective effects on your heart. Omega-3 derived from plants comes from flaxseed, chia, hemp, and a few others and provide alpha-linoleic acid (ALA). Most of the health benefits linked to omega-3 fats are linked to the animal-based EPA and DHA, not the plant-based ALA.

Furthermore, ALA is converted into EPA and DHA in your body at a very low ratio. What this means is that even if you consume large amounts of ALA, your body can only convert a relatively small amount into EPA and DHA, and only when there are sufficient enzymes.

Omega 3 Chart

Omega 3 Chart

Health Benefits of Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 is an important essential nutrients.  In fact, low concentrations of EPA and DHA may result in an increased risk of death from all causes, as well as accelerated cognitive decline.  Studies also suggest that a higher intake of omega-3s may bring certain health benefits that short-term supplementation cannot give.  Here is a list of other benefits that omega-3 provides.

Hearth Health

An Italian study of 11,324 heart attack survivors found that patients supplementing with fish oils markedly reduced their risk of another heart attack, stroke, or death. American medical researchers reported that men who consumed fish once or more every week had a 50 percent lower risk of dying from a sudden cardiac event than do men who eat fish less than once a month.

Regulates Cholesterol

Omega-3 normalizes and regulates your cholesterol triglyceride levels. Both oils notably reduce the enzyme activity that causes the liver to metabolize fat, with krill reducing liver triglycerides significantly more.

Anti

Studies have also shown that omega-3 fats are anti-arrhythmic (preventing or counteracting cardiac arrhythmia), anti-thrombotic (prevents thrombosis or a blood clot within a blood vessel), anti- atherosclerotic (preventing fatty deposits and fibrosis of the inner layer of your arteries), and anti- inflammatory.

  • DHA affects children’s learning and behavior. A study published in Plos One in June 2013 linked low levels of DHA with poorer reading, and memory and behavioral problems in healthy school-age children. In another study, children who consumed an omega-3 fat supplement as infants scored higher on rule learning, vocabulary, and intelligent testing at ages 3 to 5.

Previous research also found that children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and related behavior or learning disabilities are more likely to have low omega-3 fat levels.

Omega-3 has a great impact on your brain health.  EPA and DHA keep the dopamine levels in your brain high, increase neuronal growth in the frontal cortex of your brain, and increase cerebral circulation.

Body Chart

Body Chart

Make sure that you and your children get the right type of omega-3 fats. Go for a pollution-free, eco- friendly, and highly sustainable source, like krill oil. The good news is that krill oil appears to work at a lower dose, and this results in major cost savings, making it more affordable than fish oil. Supplementing your diet with a high-quality source of omega-3 fats, such as real krill oil, is a surefire way to help optimize your health.

Coupons and Deals Related to Post

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Preservatives: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

When you think of preservatives, you might be picturing canned foods and dried goods in the pantry. The stuff you’d rely on for sustenance during the apocalypse. It turns out that food preservatives are actually present in most of the store-bought food we eat on a daily basis. If you’re wondering what some of the hard-to-pronounce words or acronyms on the nutrition label actually mean for your health, look no further.

Look at this typical nutritional label found in North America. The bright side to recognizing preservatives is that they list them.

Look at this typical nutritional label found in North America. The bright side to recognizing preservatives is that they list them.

 

So, What Are They?

Preservatives are substances that are added to food during manufacturing or processing. Some of them are natural compounds or vitamins, others are manufactured synthetically. Preservatives are intended to prolong the shelf-life of foods by killing potentially harmful bacteria, mould, yeast and fungi. Preservatives also prevent oxidation (discoloration) and slow down natural ripening. Many preservatives currently in use have been banned in the past, but due to pressures from the food industry have been reintroduced. Although the FDA squashes claims that preservatives pose health risks, let’s just say that not all preservatives were created equal.

 

So what do you think that you have on this plate?

So what do you think that you have on this plate?

 

Who’s Keeping an Eye on the Risks?

Many toxicologists and doctors are studying the effects of food preservatives in the human body, finding them to be harmful. Many are known to cause cancer in animals, but they’re still present in human food. The long-term effects of consuming such chemicals are still very much in question. At a time when the majority of American diets consist of processed foods that contain preservatives, we have to wonder what happens after years of eating strange chemicals.

 

The table below outlines some of the most common preservatives (but keep in mind, there are thousands in existence). Feel free to use this table for reference when grocery shopping. Let’s take a look.

 

 

Preservative Used In Purpose Potential Risks Legality in Other Countries Steer Clear?
Ascorbic Acid(Vitamin C)/

Sodium Ascorbate

-Fruit Juices/Soft Drinks-Cured Meats

-Snack Foods

-Improves color-Increases nutrient value

-Antioxidant

None* Yes Safe
Sodium Benzoate (Benzoic Acid) -Soft Drinks-Condiments

-Fruit Juices

-Antimicrobial Allergic reactions in some individuals Yes Caution
Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA) -Chips-Cereal

-Chewing Gum

-Oils

-Antioxidant-Reduces Rancidity Anticipated to be a human carcinogen by the NIH and DOH Banned in Japan, some EU countries Avoid
Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT) -Chips-Cereal

-Chewing Gum

-Oils

-Antioxidant-Reduces rancidity Anticipated to be a human carcinogen by the NIH and DOH Banned in Japan, some EU countries Avoid
Sodium Nitrite, Sodium Nitrate -Cured, Smoked, or Processed Meats -Coloring-Flavor

-Antimicrobial

Breaks down into carcinogens (nitrosamines) Yes Avoid
Sorbates (Calcium Potassium, or Sorbic Acid) -Cheese-Wine

-Syrup

-Baked Goods

-Emulsifier-Anti-mould agent -Mild skin irritant-Potential carcinogen Yes Caution
Tocopherol (Vitamin E) -Oils-Cereals

-Meats

-Antioxidant-Reduces rancidity Allergic reaction in some individuals Yes Safe
Potassium Bromate -Flours -Flour improver Potential carcinogen Banned in most countries Avoid
EDTA -Condiments -Removes metal impurities Organic Pollutant Yes Likely Safe

*When ascorbic acid, sodium benzoate, and potassium benzoate (another food preservative) are combined, they can form benzene (a carcinogenic chemical). Detectable levels of benzene have been found in food products containing these preservatives.

 

 

A Caution to Consumers

Food preservatives are one category of food additives which include sweeteners, emulsifiers, thickeners, artificial colors, etc. In addition to food, preservatives can be found in cosmetics, other body products, and vaccines. Perhaps most important to remember is that companies are constantly developing new chemical formulas for additives and often include them in their products before the FDA has conducted safety reviews. The term “Generally Regarded as Safe (GRAS)” is frequently applied to food and chemical additives, typically by the manufacturing company. To be clear: it is an FDA term, but it does not indicate that the FDA has verified the product’s safety. It simply means that the manufacturer has submitted a summary of its findings to the FDA regarding the chemical.  Michael Taylor, deputy commissioner of food For the FDA had the following to say about GRAS preservatives: “We simply do not have the information to vouch for the safety of many of these chemicals.”

To learn more about food additives and the FDA, read this article in The Washington Post.

 

 

When in Doubt…

Don’t eat it! The health benefits of eating foods that are not processed vastly outweigh the risks of preservatives. If you can, buy foods with as few preservatives as possible. There is a growing trend to use natural preservatives in place of synthetic ones. Let’s hope it takes hold, so food is kept safe, fresh and healthy for years to come.

 

Rubber stamp illustration showing "NO ADDED PRESERVATIVES" text

 

Sources

  1. http://www.mratcliffe.com/images/vcb.pdf
  2. http://www.cspinet.org/reports/chemcuisine.htm#ascorbicacid
  3. http://www.fda.gov/Food/IngredientsPackagingLabeling/FoodAdditivesIngredients/ucm094211.htm#qanatural
  4. http://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodborneIllnessContaminants/ChemicalContaminants/ucm055815.htm
  5. http://www.courthousenews.com/2013/03/12/55664.htm

5 Tricks to Cooking Vegan Dishes

 

People choose a vegan lifestyle for a variety of reasons. Some choose to abstain from eating animal products for ethical reasons. They believe the treatment of animals in factory farm settings is inhumane. Others believe that cutting out meat, dairy and eggs from their diet provides them with wonderful health benefits. Some choose to go vegan for environmental reasons, as growing corn to feed cattle requires much more land resources than feeding people a plant-based diet. Most are vegans for all of these reasons. This isn’t to say that giving up animal products is easy. Some of our favorite foods — dishes that we’ve grown up eating — are loaded with butter, eggs and animal proteins. However, there are a few tricks you can use to cook vegan dishes so you will hardly notice their absence.

 

This is what your diet should look like while eating vegan.

This is what your diet should look like while eating raw vegan.

  1. Don’t Milk It

 

Don’t dairy milk it anyway. Vegans avoid dairy milk for all the reasons outlined above. With the variety of substitutes available, most vegans never miss it. Almond milk, soy milk or rice milk can be used as a substitute on cereal or simply in a cold glass on a hot day. You can also substitute these alternative milks in any recipe that calls for dairy milk. Almond milk can be used in baking bread for a quick dough rise. Soy milk is the thickest and is great for baking as well. Rice milk is sweet, so it’s perfect for puddings and other deserts.

 

  1. Don’t Be Cheesy

 

There are many varieties of cheese substitutes available at health food stores. Made with ingredients like tapioca and arrowroot flour, these products mimic the texture and taste of a variety of cheeses, like cheddar and mozzarella. Some vegetarian cheese substitutes contain casein, which is a protein found in dairy milk thus making it not vegan. Take care to read the packaging when buying cheese substitutes.

 

  1. Hatch a Plan to Give Up Eggs

 

Apple sauce, silken tofu, flax seed, bananas — these are all whole food ingredients that can be used as substitutes in baking everything from brownies and bread to cakes and cookies. An especially ingenious vegan trick is too add a little vinegar to the cake mix. It will provide for a moist and light cake leaving no trace of vinegar taste.

There are plenty of other options to  get your protein and egg'benefits.

There are plenty of other options to get your protein and egg’benefits.

 

  1. Meet more UnMeats

 

Tempeh, tofu, seitan (if you are not gluten-free), these are a few of the more popular choices for meat substitutes. There are many companies that make products out of these vegan ingredients that have a surprisingly meat-like taste. There are faux chicken nuggets, fake ribs and sausage, not dogs instead of hot dogs, and many varieties of veggie burgers. A good trick to help give your next BBQ a good meat alternative is Portobello mushrooms. These mushrooms have a large flat cap that is tender and juicy and holds up well on the grill.

 

  1. Go Nuts & Get Seedy

 

Nuts are a great substitute for meat in making loafs and burgers. Walnuts and pecans can be baked with brown rice and mushrooms  to create mouth-watering vegan dishes. Lentils, which are actually seeds, work wonderfully too. As mentioned above, Almond milk is a suitable substitute for daily milk and cashews can be used to make diary-free cheeses.

It's not bad when you're a vegan! :)

It’s not bad when you’re a vegan! 🙂

 

 

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What foods should infants and toddlers eat?

Who wouldn't want to nourish this babe as healthily as possible?

Who wouldn’t want to nourish this babe as healthily as possible?

It’s an exciting time in a parent’s life when they start to consider baby’s first foods. You want to nourish your little one with foods that imbue all the love that you have for them, that will help them feel well and be healthy. So, where should you start?

First, before you start trying new foods, there are a few foods that you should avoid for the first two years. These are: raw honey, peanuts, and tree nuts. It’s also best to avoid “sticky” foods, like soy nut butters and other gluey-type consistencies.

Now that we have that out of the way, let’s form some building blocks towards a healthy baby! (Before we start, a little reminder that Organically grown is always best.)

Don't forget the building blocks for your infant

Don’t forget the building blocks for your infant

Up to 4 months of age, a baby’s diet should be breast milk or formula. After that, the fun begins. Be sure to monitor new foods to make sure there are no adverse reactions and introduce the foods gradually, making sure the foods have adjusted before you try something new.

fruits for infants

Don’t forget to peel the skin off and puree!

Fruits and Veggies:
These are great first foods for babies and can be tried after 4 months. Make sure that you either puree these foods or purchase a good prepared organic baby fruit or veggie puree. Good first choices are apples, avocado, banana, pears, butternut squash, and green beans.

At 6 months, your baby can start on a more advanced, fibrous list, such as apricots, mango, nectarines, pumpkin, plums, peas, peaches, zucchini, and carrots. These will still need to be pureed.

At 9 months, babies can usually handle soft chunks of fruits and veggies, like a piece of baked potato or sliced banana. These should be cut into “finger food” portions. These should only be very soft foods, not things that require biting, like grapes, because they are a choking danger. However, berries like strawberries and blueberries are fine pureed. Do not use “seedy” fruits, like blackberries. Other new recommended additions at this age include eggplant, potatoes, beets, broccoli, and asparagus.

At 12 months, foods that have slightly more substance can be added, like spinach, tomatoes, corn, onions, and beans.

After 18-24 months, babies can usually handle foods like grapes, but should be closely monitored and it’s best to slice the fruit before feeding.

You can use white or brown rice, or other grains.

You can use white or brown rice, or other grains.

Grains:
Soft brown rice can be introduced as early as 4-5 months, although you should consult your pediatrician, as most recommend the age of 6 months before starting solid foods. Brown rice is a good starter grain because it is easy to digest

Cereal grains can be introduced at 6 months. These include oatmeal and barley can be introduced.
At 9 months, baby can handle things like teething biscuits that are very bland, easy to hold, and do not pose a choking hazard. You can also introduce finger foods, like cereal-os. Baby can also have pasta (semolina flour pasta, not whole wheat).

At 12 months, babies can start having more wheat, added gradually because wheat is a common allergen. Wheat germ can be added to foods as a dietary supplement.

Meat like chicken, beef, tofu, and fish can be eaten after 6 months of age

Meat like chicken, beef, tofu, and fish can be eaten after 6 months of age

Meat/ Fish/Tofu:
At 6 months, meat, fish, or tofu can be added to baby’s diet. Again, these will need to be pureed to avoid choking. Keep the foods bland to avoid upset tummies from spices.

At 9 months, most of these will still need to be pureed, but very soft pieces of fish or tofu strips can be added as finger foods. Remember, the pieces of this meat will need to be very, very soft. Think something you could mush up with your tongue and easily swallow.

After 12 months, ground meat and chicken products can be added to the diet, but the tougher cuts of meat will need to wait until closer to 18 months when baby is able to chew them. This is also true of “hot dog” type foods, as they pose a choking hazard until the baby is closer to 2 years. Most health officials don’t recommend eggs until after 12 months.

Prior to the age of 2 years, wild game is not recommended.

Yogurt is good to eat after 6 months of age

Yogurt is good to eat after 6 months of age

Dairy:
Prior to 6 months, a baby should not be consuming milk products of any type other than breast milk or formula (breast milk is the best if possible). If your family has a medical history of dairy allergies, you’ll want to talk to your doctor before introducing dairy products.

At 6 months old, it is usually fine to introduce yogurt. This isn’t the same as introducing milk, as yogurt is gentler on the digestive system due to reduced lactose content.

At 7-8 months, milk in baked goods is considered to be fine.

At 9 months, you can add cheese to your baby’s diet in small, soft chunks or as cottage cheese.

At 12 months, you can add drinking milk. The milk should be whole, not reduced fat. Your baby needs the fat in the milk to be healthy. Just remember, low fat milk is an adult-only drink.

 

Final tips:
Remember, add gradually. If baby truly doesn’t like something, don’t force it. Try 3 or 4 attempts on different days and if it still doesn’t work, you might want to just drop it for a few months. Oftentimes, when a person is very averted to certain foods, it is due to an allergy or sensitivity to that food.

During this stage, a hand grinder for food experimenting is a wonderful thing to have and would be a good investment. There are also a lot of really great organic prepared baby foods on the market that will help you during busy times.

Read labels! We can’t stress this enough. A lot of foods contain unexpected ingredients. Keep it simple. If you can’t read the ingredient quickly or don’t know what it means, it isn’t good for your child anyway.

Finally, keep in mind that this is just a basic guideline for the average infant. Some babies’ digestive systems are faster or slower than others.

Happy eating!

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What is Processed Food and How to Avoid?

 
Why are processed foods bad?

Any search on Google for “processed food” will surround you with popular clauses like ‘harmful’, ‘avoid’, or ‘dangerous’. Over time, convenience food has bedeviled our pantries and fridges, even our mind and body. Why do you think the alteration in our food has stockpiled such media critique? Whatever we eat is processed to some degree and that includes, but not limited to, chopped apples, whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta, even a bag of spinach leaves. If you’re still wondering how to achieve clean eating, read on.

What you need to know: Real vs Processed Food

Conventionally, the main reasons to process food are to eliminate pathogens and to extend shelf life of the food. In order to achieve this, food is altered on a varying spectrum from minimally to heavily. Most of our food has been processed for centuries using simple techniques such as cooking. This offers many benefits like enhancing the useful life of the product, reducing the food safety risks, and creates a greater variety in the food supply chain. So what is this negative aspect that has a major impact on food processing? Mainly, it’s the practices and ingredients used in conventionally processed foods, which places the human body at immense dietary & health risks while concerning our environmental and economic issues.
Often, the mind struggles to perceive the significance of real food. Real food comes with an expiration date. Conversely, processed food remains the same in color, texture, and appearance no matter the age.

Real non-processed foods won't have an expiration date stamped on them.

Real non-processed foods won’t have an expiration date stamped on them.

What to look for & consider avoiding: 
– Packaged vegetables, fruits, and roasted nuts. These have been processed minimally and are often prewashed, diced, and peeled for human consumption convenience.
– Read your Ingredient List for added ingredients like flavor enhancers, additives preservatives, and stabilizers. These are used to improve texture, taste, and color and are often found in dairy products, pasta sauces, salad dressings, and more.
– Highly processed foods will include ready-to-eat meals, frozen meals, frozen food, precooked meals, and short microwave cooking times.
– Canned food is often heavily processed with chemicals to lock in the nutritional quality and to retain freshness.
– Opt for low-sodium products as they are often packed to keep the longevity of the food product. Rinse off canned vegetables/fruits and drain; this simple step reduces salt by 30%.

Now, there are some things that you should be aware of in processed foods.
Sugar – Avoid non-organic sugar as it is often just beet sugar and heavily processed. Try switching your sugar source to raw sugar or unpasteurized honey. Always look at the ingredient list and be wary if there are added sugars in the first 3 ingredients listed. Words like: sugar, maltose, brown sugar, high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, cane sugar, and fruit juice concentrate should be avoided as much as possible.
Fats – To understand the difference between good and bad fats, you need to be aware of the players in the game. ‘Mono’ and ‘Poly’ unsaturated fats are found in olive oil, rice bran oil, and fatty fish (salmon, trout, tuna) and they enhance your good cholesterol and overall health. ‘Trans’ fat and ‘saturated’ are the worse fats to intake as they elevate heart disease and other disease risks. A simple trick to remember is that ‘good’ fat is liquid at room temperature (like virgin olive oil or coconut oil) and that ‘bad’ fat is solid (like margarine).
– Fortified Foods – like cereals, milk, and juices. Milk and juices are fortified with vitamins like A and D and breakfast cereals are usually enriched with fiber along with other vitamins and essential nutrients.

How to Start Making an Impact on your Health!

Start making a habit of reading the Nutrition Fact Label as well as the Ingredient List so that you can make quick informed choices. Look around and be aware for terms like “raw”, “unprocessed” and “no added preservatives”. If buying meat and meat by-products, being aware of “cage-free”, “no hormones added”, and “organic” will aid in a cleaner product.

Clean labels to consider purchasing

Clean labels to consider
purchasing

Buy Non-GMO Project verified on sugar and corn & try to buy USDA Organic if not Non-GMO Project verified.