Cancer, Lent and MSG….

The additives in seemingly healthy food are maddening. I know I should be reading the labels when I buy things… and I know I have trouble finding soups without MSG. My only excuse was that I bought this particular package before I gave up cancer for Lent. I made a very nice pot roast in the slowcooker. It called for vegetable soup mix. You’d think vegetable soup mix would be safe… but no, it had MSG in it (which I discovered after I put it in the pot). Why do companies persist with this particular preservative? It can cause headaches, nausea and chest pains. Health Canada says it is not a ‘health hazard’ but that doesn’t mean I want to be feeding it to my kids. Especially since high levels of glutamates in the blood mean cancers will grow rapidly.

Anyway, back to the pot roast. It was a beer-braised pot roast, made with The Husband’s homemade stout beer. Red meat and booze – sound’s like I’ve fallen off the Lenten wagon right? Ahhh, but it is the only time I am planning to serve red meat this week (well within the recommendations) and the beer is actually a cancer fighting beer! I know, I know, you think I’m full of it but there is, apparently, a compound called xanthohumol found in hops, which is more prevalent in stouts, porters and ales (less so in your typical Labatt swill – oh, did I write that out loud?!) which is toxic to certain cancers. I am currently finishing the rest of the bottle not used for the pot roast… and I feel no guilt (other than the fact that I want another one).

Anyway… If you can bear with me, I had planned to continue my trip through the grocery store. Yesterday we wrapped up in the produce aisle with the depressingly low number of organic fruits. My next stop was the bread.

This is another part of the grocery store that bugs me. I would love to make my own bread… but reality says that’s not going to happen. Hence the reason for a modern grocery store. However, I don’t want to feed my family bleached, enriched flours. I have been eating a lot of pita bread lately. I means a little less carbohydrate at lunch and I like it, so do the kids. Why then are the kid sized, and much more interesting to a four year old, mini pitas only available in white bread?

On a similar vein, why is the store brand bread only available in white or whole wheat? We know whole wheat is better than white, but we also know whole grain is better than whole wheat. If I want to buy whole grain bread I have to buy a national brand. It takes only simple logic to deduce that, if the bread has travelled farther, as anything not made in store would have to, it must have more preservatives. What’s better… more preservatives or whole grain? I don’t know.

Shall I stop ranting now?

The rest of the trip was relatively uneventful. I was disappointed to learn how much sugar is in yogurt, but no matter what I add to plain, Balkan yogurt, my kids won’t eat it. I was pleased to see how little of my list took me into the central part of the store. Overall I feel like I’m doing okay on the food part of this adventure. However, next week I’ll tackle physical activity… look out!

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5 Responses to Cancer, Lent and MSG….

  1. Anonymous says:

    Here is an idea for your bread dissatisfaction…if you want to do a little baking! I have not tried it yet, but looks promising and would be a good experiment for a couple of weeks :)!

  2. dawna says:

    did you notice the new flavours of balkan yogurt? i saw two – strawberry and field berry – might be worth a shot.and, i'm pretty sure that the local bakery has whole grain bread.

  3. Seriously Frivolous says:

    Here in Edmonton, the Bulk Barn sells MSG! I was floored when I saw it.Good luck! I loev reading this blog, by the way.

  4. Atlantic Writer says:

    My parents had MSG on the spice rack the whole time I was growing up. It's still there but I don't think it's been touched in 20 or 30 years – except for the day Little Dude decided to play with the jar and got the cap open. I almost had a coronary; luckily it all went on the floor instead of him. I put him in the bath immediately anyway!

  5. Barb Davy says:

    Plain yogurt with jam stirred in has been a mainstay for my 3 year old. It only takes a few teaspoons to a bowl, and tastes much like regular mixed yogurt. It's cheaper, and the yogurt keeps longer when it's not premixed with anything sugary.I've not found any good bread options, so I do make it when I can find the time and it's not too hot to have the oven on.

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