Saturday, April 26, 2008

QIM's public service announcement about HFCS

I dont usually deviate from my photo parade of food and commentary.... However, we recently went to the Food Film Festival, Food for Thought, and watched a terrific film about the corn industry in this country and how this staple food has morphed from a useful culinary go-to item for nutritious home-baked things into a frankenkernel of doom. Yes folks, I just said the word frankenkernel.

Corn really is everywhere-- and in the places we least expect it. I'm not talking about tasty jalapeno corn bread, or corn tortillas or sweet corn on the cob.... Something darker is afoot.

In its more deviant, hyper-processed state it provides consumers with the deceptively delicious HFCS: High Fructose Corn Syrup. Now most of us know that it's totally not cool to consume a diet of mountain dew, oreos and hot dogs...However, HFCS has a way of appearing in the most seemingly innocuous of places-- for instance, the english muffin. Now, if you have been reading along for a while you know that I have a soft spot for the E-M, and was deeply saddened to realize that HFCS was residing in the nooks and crannies of a most delicious breakfast item. It was a dark realization and there was a brief moment of silence. But, then happily I noticed tucked behind the standard muffins, just out of sight, that Thomas' just launched a HFCS-free brand of muffin-- gentle reader, all is not lost.

HOWEVER, more seriously and most alarming to me is the very present threat HFCS poses to kids who grow up eating 100% processed foods and are washing it all down with soda a.k.a. liquid candy. The result is generation upon generation of kids that are so jacked up on sugar that they are almost guaranteed to become part of the ever-widening obesity epidemic in this country and are seriously at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. I find this overwhelming and sad.

So, in an effort to be more conscientious in my own kitchen, I have deliberately taken steps to remove HFCS item from our pantry and take a closer look when we purchase everyday things like juice, crackers, breads, granola bars. There are some things that are hard to give up.. like coca cola (sweet elixir of life) but it's worth a second look.

For those that are interested in learning more about the festival go here:
for those that are interested in the documentary about corn, check this out:

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