So here I am at Starbucks, the kids properly squared away at daycare. After effing around with the wireless, I only have 40 minutes left to write.
I’m taking a group of women from my mom’s group to the supermarket tomorrow morning for a nutrition briefing. It should be interesting. Hopefully I won’t get kicked out. (Last time I tried something like this, I got booted from the Westfield Mall for trying to lead an exercise class. C’mon, if the mall encourages mall walkers, why can’t they stretch and warmup first? And what if warming up consists of 3 sets of burpees?? Liability, my ass.) Let’s see if Safeway is open to their customers learning how to make healthy choices.
For tomorrow I figure I’m going to write up a fake grocery list and we can look for the best choices in each category together. Tuna will definitely be on that list. How many of you realize that your average can of tuna in water contains soy? Bet you haven’t even looked. As diligent as I am, I didn’t even realize this until about 6 months ago.
Why is there soy in my tuna?
The other day I was at the grocery store and was trying to find the best deal on tuna. I usually just get the small cans, but since I’ve been eating so much protein lately, I took a look at the bigger cans. I flipped the can around to see how many servings were in there and the words “contains soy” caught my attention. What?! Soy? In a can of TUNA? WTF? This is tuna packed in water. There shouldn’t be anything else in it except tuna. And water.
The ingredient list read as follows: tuna, water, vegetable broth, salt. Wait a minute, vegetable broth? That’s a new one. Since they’re listing soy as a potential allergen on the label, I can only assume that the soy is in the vegetable broth. So, what else is in there? MSG? Why are they using soy in their vegetable broth in the first place? It’s not a vegetable and it’s not particularly good for you either. The answer is probably because it’s cheap and it’s in almost everything these days.
I looked at all the brands that were available to me – Chicken of the Sea®, Bumblebee®, Star Kist® among them – and ALL the “tuna packed in water” contained vegetable broth with a side order of soy. The Star Kist® website says:
“Vegetable broth is added to some StarKist® Tuna products as a flavor enhancer. The broth must consist of two or more of the following: beans, cabbage, carrots, celery, garlic, onions, parsley, peas, potatoes, green or red bell peppers, spinach, or tomatoes.”
No mention of soy. Or the fact that beans and peas are NOT VEGETABLES. They don’t belong in a “vegetable broth.” Tomato is a fucking FRUIT! Did you know that tomatoes and potatoes are part of the nightshade family and besides the fact that some people are deathly allergic to them, they can also aggravate arthritis? How responsible of Star Kist®. Well, spinach is on that list, you pipe up – spinach is good for you! Yes, organic spinach is good for you. Over 80% of non-organic spinach has been found to have high levels of pesticides in it. Yum! I guess it’s not enough for these companies that the fish is loaded with mercury.
All that aside, if I wanted “flavor-enhanced” tuna, I would buy one of their crappy pre-packaged mixtures that also contain wheat, corn and god knows what else. I’ve had regular tuna steaks before, that weren’t “flavor-enhanced.” They were delicious. The other ingredients in the vegetable broth aren’t listed anywhere. I can only assume this is due to “food security.” And the fact that they don’t actually know what foods are in each batch of broth. They will use whatever is cheapest at time of production.
Those of you that know me well know that I read nutrition labels very carefully. I just never thought I needed to read the label for a can of tuna packed in water. It’s sad and scary how the food industry slips stuff into our mouths without us being aware of it. The vitamins I (almost!) bought last week had wheat gluten and titanium dioxide in them. Start reading those labels, people, and tell the companies what you really think by choosing to buy responsible brands. I had to go to Trader Joe’s to get tuna without soy in it. And it was worth the extra 50 cents a can.
I’ve read a lot of disturbing articles about the food industry here in the US while doing my research for this nutrition information thingy . Here’s one about the bribes that take place and how it can affect your health and family. It’s by Dr. Mercola (who inserts his comments at the end of the articles taken from other sources). For those of you that have never heard of Dr. Mercola, you’ll hear me talking about him and quoting him a lot. He’s like Dr. Oz, before Dr. Oz sold out. In fact, he was on The Dr. Oz Show a few weeks ago, but I didn’t see the episode as I’ve stopped watching that crap ass show. Such potential. Sigh. What a shame. I’m reading Dr. Mercola’s book Sweet Deceptions right now, which is about the artificial sweetener industry, the corruption in the FDA, and the actual side effects of those sweeteners on the human race. I’m not ready to blog about it yet, but suffice it to say that I have not touched a single one, including Splenda, since I cracked that book.
I’ll be doing up an information packet for the ladies tomorrow, and plan to post it here. Answers to questions like: what the fuck is maltodextrin and how many names are there for MSG will be included. If there are any questions you have but are too lazy to research, please comment! I’m trying to find out as much as I can for myself and am happy to pass it on.