Shawn has been doing some of the grocery shopping for the family lately. I recently got a part time job and don’t have as much time to go as before. I try to make a detailed list of what we need but sometimes it’s just hard to explain what I’ve been doing for the past 8+ years. He has really been trying to be helpful and do the small things, but grocery shopping for our family, PLUS bringing all four kids with him to do the shopping, just equals some buying mis-steps.
So, Shawn made a mistake a few days ago. Instead of being mad at him and making him feel dumb (I wouldn’t have done that anyways!), I decided to take a different approach and thank him for falling into the grocery store traps, so I’d have sometime to write about today. He is a wonderfully patient husband and I love him, mistakes and all.
He wanted to try a new recipe for dinner from one of the new cookbooks I got from the library. (AWESOME, right?!?!) He picked out “Blackbean Tacos.” The recipe called for corn tortillas as the wrapper, and since corn tortillas, well um, contain corn, that wasn’t going to work. I told him to check out, at the store, if there was any gluten-free tortillas.
This is what he came home with:
When I got home that I night, I asked him why he bought these. He said “I don’t know, they looked healthy.”
True. They DO appear to be healthy. All these new cool words all over the label “flaxseed,” “Omega 3,” “blue corn.”….it’s easy to be confused on what is real and what is an advertisement. Food companies, OF COURSE, want you to buy their foods and in this day in age, if they put “hydrogenated soy bean oil” on the front of the label no one would buy it….which by the way, these contain hydrogenated soy bean oil, along with a slew of other processed ingredients and preservatives. oh yum BLEH!
Yesterday, we went to the store and I actually compared the regular Mission flour tortillas with these and found out: THEY ARE EXACTLY THE SAME with 2 exceptions:
- Different price. Mission Flour is 20 count for $1.99 and Mission Artisan is 8 count for $2.49
- Added ingredients. Same ingredients except Mission Artisan has added flaxseed and blue corn
A quick way to find out what food is healthy, or just an easy advertisement, is flip over the front and check out the ingredient label. It’s been said over and over, “if you can’t pronounce it, don’t eat it!”
I am in the middle of reading an awesome book right now called “In Defense of Food” by Micheal Pollan. In this book, he talks about how we, as a society, are eating a ton of fake food (Referring to processed foods.) and the effects all this fake food is having on us. (obesity, diabetes, health disease, etc, etc, etc…)
“In Defense of Food” shows us how, despite the daunting dietary landscape Americans confront in the modern supermarket, we can escape the Western diet and, by doing so, most of the chronic diseases that diet causes. We can relearn which foods are healthy.” (portion taken from the inside flap)
Basically, Shawn fell for the advertisement on this product. This book talks about, in depth, how the food industry has changed and so has the marketing. “Flaxseed,” and “omega 3” are cool words right now. People respond to those things, and thus buy the product….like Shawn. But the product really didn’t change. Mission added in “cool ingredients” and changed the label. Refreshed their marketing plan to meet the market.
Anyways, the point: Don’t be fool by an excellent marketing team.
“Yet as a general rule, it’s a whole lot easier to slap a healthy claim on a box of sugary cereal than on a raw potato or carrot, with the perverse result that the most healthful foods in the supermarket sit there quietly in the produce section silent as stroke victims, while a few aisles over in ‘cereal’ the Cocoa Puffs and Lucky Charms are screaming their new found ‘whole-grain goodness’ to the rafters.” (Taken from: “In Defense of Food” by Michael Pollan)