Welcome to the April Change Challenge! This month I challenge you to read the ingredient labels on your food, and then commit to stop buying food that has certain ingredients in it. We’ll be talking about ingredients that should be completely avoided and also about baby steps you can take in eliminating other certain ingredients from your food. I’m not going to throw out a huge long list of ingredients to avoid because I know that’s probably not realistic, and I would probably have to throw away half of the food in my pantry and fridge.
This is another challenge I’m doing right along with you. Although we have eliminated a lot of processed foods from our diet, we still have some things that I’ve been holding onto, and others that I know I need to find more healthy alternatives for. I have been more intentional about reading labels recently and sometimes I have been shocked and frustrated and what I have found in the ingredients lists of food that I eat regularly, and thought were fairly healthy.
So, our first step in this Challenge is to simply turn your box or bottle or package around and actually read through the list of ingredients in the foods you are eating. Take note of a few things: Can you pronounce the words? Do you know what all the ingredients are? Is there anything that you know is not good for you, or are there some things that you are unsure of? Let’s just be a little more aware of what it is we are actually putting into our mouths and feeding our bodies with. Before we can make changes we need to know what we are working with.
Why is this Change Challenge important?
There are a ton of additives in food, over 3000(!) of them actually. I was looking at this list on Wikipedia of food additives and was just shocked by the shear number of them. That is a lot of stuff that is added to our food that is not necessarily food, right?
While some additives are naturally derived and do not seem to pose a health risk there are many, many additives that are simply not good for us, may have been linked to health problems and should be avoided as much as possible. To me, there is something not right about the fact that so much food has to have something added to it so that I will like the way it tastes or smells, so it will look nice, or so it can sit on my shelf for an indefinite amount of time. That doesn’t sit well with me. I want to know what’s in my food and why it’s in there. I don’t want to eat things that aren’t really food, and that may contain ingredients that could be harmful to me or my family.
This month, let’s take a good look at the food we are eating and the ingredients that they are made out of!
Do you regulary read the ingredient labels on foods you eat? Have you been surprised or shocked by any of the ingredients in foods you thought were healthy or good for you?
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This is the first post for April’s Change Challenge – Read the Ingredients! You can catch up on all the Change Challenge posts here.
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