Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Bananas!

I got out the bag of banana crisps today and a little less than a serving remained so I decided to finish the bag without using a bowl. I sat down, and as I was eating, I reread the nutrition label and made a shocking discovery. "Banana Crisps" with the same picture and label on the front of the bag is no longer an 80 calorie snack made with bananas and a little sugar. A new ingredient is on the nutrition label......rice bran oil. The same size serving now delivers 150 calories and 8 grams of fat, 2 of which are saturated. I was horrified.

I read nutrition labels and I tend to remember good snack food. I was excited when I found these last summer at a "health food" store I shop from time to time. I like banana crisps. They taste good and are fun to eat. In my mind they were junk food that wasn't really junk food.

Then I got mad. The label on the front of the bag is exactly the same. The nutrition label has changed. I have no idea when it changed. Who knows how long I have been eating roughly twice the calories and extra fat. My "health food" store pulled a fast one. I don't feel the same about their products. I can't run in and pick up my favorites every few weeks, I HAVE to read the labels to see if anything has changed. I'm not sure if I want to shop there anymore.

Then I thought about this some more. I was calling this snack "fruit." In reality, it is processed food. Who knows how those bananas were made into tasty dried slighty sweet crisps. If I am fully honest about the situation, I was telling myself something that wasn't true. The better food choice is a banana...the yellow fruit with a peel. I know this and I need to stop telling myself that processed or prepared food is equivalent to food that comes from a plant that grows in the ground.

Bananas! What a lesson I got today.

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