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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Peanut Butter Been Better



I pilfered this awful nearly non-food product from my guest that stays with me a few days a week. I irk slightly every time I see as it is an unusual sight for my otherwise whole foods kitchen. What especially ruffles me is the label on the product, as it is extremely misleading for shoppers trying to find their ol' staple jar of peanut butter like they used to eat in the good old days. Not that peanut butter was any better back then, but some how this grocery item has weaselled its way to 'health food' status, probably because its made from nuts, and has protein.

It seems as though most of our educated, average-grocery-store shoppers receive their food/health education from product labels, manufactures' promotional materials, or magazine articles, which never really clearly define the subtleties of what to look for and avoid when selecting a particular food item that's deemed healthy. You see - not all foods, or ingredients are created equally. Eating fresh, recently harvested, properly stored, good quality peanuts would be one thing, but this... this terrible food that has crept onto grocery store shelves is another thing. The average shopper doesn't know the difference between one nut product from another. Allow me to educate!!!

First of all - notice the front of the label. I blanked out the brand name to protect the culprit, but notice the 'health' symbols and connotations that exist, immediately giving the impression of good health. A light blue label is reminiscent of President Choice's (Canadian brand) "Blue Label" line of health foods, and they've informed the customer that one serving (how much?) is 80 calories, and 5g of fat. Totally irrelevant to the bigger picture of health when you consider the deeper aspects that underlie good health. The peanut butter is illustrated with some green apples, not the white bread that most people consume it with, then they've also placed a picture of a butterfly (indicating no added preservatives - but then what is corn maltodextrin?), and a giant exclamation mark on it, meaning, this food must be special, somehow. Otherwise they wouldn't have cared to let us know about it. They should have put a skull and crossbones on it instead.

Flipping the jar over and reading its ingredients label gives the product a completely different, contradictory message. Written DIRECTLY on it: HYDROGENATED VEGETABLE OIL, comprising three poor quality oils that some how got blended together, or selected at the time of manufacture, likely which ever was the lowest priced at the time. Often manufacturers will label two or three oils so that they can choose the cheapest at the time of production and not have to change the label. So they chose the cheapest oil, and then HYDROGENATED IT!! Wasn't this issue exposed about a decade ago when products started getting away from hydrogenation and trans-fats? Nah. They just put it right in, thinking that people will overlook it considering it appears as a health food. Or worse yet, they don't even look or notice, all you have to look at is the label to clearly see it is a 'health food'. Aside from that, corn maltodextrin, an indigestible (therefore zero carbohydrate sugar) corn by-product used to sweeten food is second on the list. This is useful to the manufacturer because the sweetener doesn't get included in the nutritional facts label because it CANNOT be digested by our body, so it is not counted on the label for either caloric intake OR sugar content. But they also added sugar and molasses anyway. Because maltodextrin is indigestible, the flora in our gut have the job of breaking it down after all other nutrients are absorbed. For most people, this means it exasperates candida and parasitic infections, typically resulting in a worsened condition, but acutely resulting in gas and bloating - with no understanding of why or where it came from. Sugar does this too however. It is the food to feed unwanted infections, or growths in the body, including cancer, cysts, warts, arterial plaque, viruses and fungi. Not only that, but the rancid, rotting nuts and nut oil from the peanuts, which when are poor quality contain aflotoxins - a carcinogenic by-product from rotting plant proteins, but these rancid oils, in conjunction with the sugars and hydrogenated fat inserted into the food, create an incredibly supportive 'house' for the infections to thrive and grow, further worsening most health conditions in the body. These oils also create dangerous lesions in the body, especially in the arteries, damaging the tissues, requiring cholesterol to come in and create a layer of plaque to protect the damaged tissue. Hydrogenated and rancid oils also stagnate the liver creating irritability, stress, inflammation, allergies and a host of other ailments. Refined, and rancid oils, typically found in most commercially available foods, are one of the greatest contributors to aging and the destruction of precious internal tissues such as the liver, heart, arteries, and so on. Sugar contributes to this issue as well, including the added sweeteners of maltodextrin and molasses. Salt is the last ingredient, which also contributes to bodily 'Dampness' as known in Chinese Medicine, referring to the unwanted growths in the body, which include the list above, but also excess weight, and masses in the body. So really, there is NO one good ingredient in this food. They are all refined and/or rancid by-products from foods that are hardly deemed healthy in the first place, and all contribute to increased poor health and do not facilitate in good health in any way. I took a picture of the inside of the jar to illustrate what your arteries might look like with continued use of this product.

One last thing to note: this product has been "Health Checked" by the Heart and Stroke Foundation. YIKES!

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  5. Thanks for the information. My mom has been struggling with a rare fungal infection from a rose thorn, and we have noticed severe bloating at certain times. I would not have connected it to an additive had I not stumbled on your site. I'll be sure to pass it along. Keep up the good work and wealth of information.

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