A Staten Island triathlete and endurance coach ventures into the ultramarathon realm where there are seemingly no limits to human endurance. In 2013, he successfully finished the Grand Slam of Ultrarunning (picture of 2013 Grand Slam finishers above; I'm second from right), becoming only the 282nd person (since its beginnings in 1986) and only the fourth New Yorker to finish four of the oldest and most prestigious 100 mile ultramarathons in the U.S. in only 10 weeks.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Always Read the Labels - Some Foods Can Surprise You With Bad Ingredients

I recently posted here about the 3 evil food ingredients you should avoid at all costs, wheat, artifical sweeteners, and high fructose corn syrup.

What is crazy is that it seems like 80% of all foods have one or more of these ingredients in them, even in those you don't suspect.

So you need to always be sceptical and read the labels.

I recently started to eat Greek Yogurt for breakfast and needed a bit of protein to sprinkle on it so that I can get my protein for the meal. I went over to Trader Joe's this morning to do a bit of grocery shopping and also to see what they have in terms of protein.



They had about 3-4 options for protein supplements. On a whim I decided to look at the ingredients that make up the protein powders.

One "designer whey protein" powder had fructose as the 2nd ingredient on the list.

Are you kidding me? Why does everything that is placed in a package HAVE to be sweetened? I put the can of powder back on the shelf with disgust.

I picked up another can, this one labeled "Trader Joe's Whey protein". I read the ingredients again...

...and saw "corn sugar" high on the list of ingredients again. I threw that back on the shelf with disgust.

The third brand was worse. It was a "MetRx" brand protein blend of something or another. I picked this one up and read the ingredients. What I saw was frightening.

Aside from all the suspicious chemicals I cannot pronounce easily, one of the ingredients stood out like a sore thumb...sucralose.

That would be Splenda, an artificial sweetener that is shown in many research report as very poisonous. WTF?

And no larger mention of this in bold letters on the label..., you know, like "Made with Splenda".

This was very galling to me. The people who usually pick up protein powders are usually health conscious folks who are looking to improve their health, and they lace their powders with something that can irrevocably damage their bodies? And not one mention in the front part of the label that it "has Splenda" in it.

I wound up picking up a Organic Hemp Protein powder from Trader Joes. It only has 3 ingredients in it, and all of them are natural.  Even with the protein powder I bought, I remain very sceptical about these powders in general, because of what is in these things. There has been a huge misinformation campaign about nutrition in general, and I am starting to believe that these protein powders might also be involved with this misinformation. The ingredients that I see in them certainly do not comfort me at all and will definitely be asking a lot more questions in the near future about using these protein powders at all.

Bottom line? Be on guard with any food or supplements you take. And ask a lot of questions, because sometimes you see things that you normally wouldn't see. This was the case this morning and I'm sure that it would not be the last surprise that I would ever see.

Our food supply has been compromised in a big way in recent years. Please act accordingly.

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