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Old 03-28-2007, 08:18 PM   #1  
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Default For those who do not eat processed/pre-packaged foods, what does that mean?

I get the pre-packaged part, of course. But does this mean nothing that comes in a can, box, carton, etc.?

What do you eat for cereal?

Do you skip all pasta, even whole wheat pasta? Do you make your own pasta sauce?

No lunch meat?

Only plain yogurt?

What about bread?

I feel like if I tried to cut out all these things, I'd only eat fruit and the occassional chicken breast. For now, I'm trying to cut out HFCS, white flour, and as much sugar as I can stand. But I feel like I could do better for my body.

Any advice would be appreciated!!
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Old 03-28-2007, 08:41 PM   #2  
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I eat Kashi Cereal, I know that its natural and delish!
Others on here can probably answer the rest a little better.
Good luck
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Old 03-28-2007, 09:15 PM   #3  
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For myself, it's not about avoiding ANYTHING that comes in a package...I eat Kashi cereal, buy Bob's Red Mill steel cut oats, use a lot of cannellini and black beans - all these things come in some sort of bag, box or can!

When I use the words "prepackaged", I typically mean it in terms of snack foods, processed foods - foods that either are usually full of empty calories, or where the food no longer bears much resemblance to the real thing. Foods that have long ingredient lists, that contain chemicals, artificial colors, HFCS, trans fats, etc. I try to eat as many whole foods as possible - foods that are as close to they way they occur in nature. An example would be an apple instead of commercial apple sauce or juice. Steel cut oats instead of Quaker instant. Brown rice instead of instant or even white.

I do typically eat whole wheat pasta, whole grain bread. I do most of my cooking from scratch, so yes - things like pasta sauce, I make my own. Keep in mind, though, that I love to cook so this isn't a chore in my eyes! You can certainly find good quality commercial products - it isn't so much about never eating anything pre-prepared, but rather making good healthy choices and putting quality first.

(and also - I control what I can control. I'm by no means militant - I do go out for dinner to restaurants, friends' houses, etc. and don't freak out about having white pasta or whatever on occasion.....life is life!)

I do eat plain yogurt, but I like it - I wouldn't make myself choke down anything I couldn't stand the taste of. I think the key is you have to enjoy eating this way - it definitely isn't for everyone, no matter how many people like the idea of it. I think a lot of people that don't eat this way would be pleasantly surprised if they did it for a while - but everyone has to choose what works for them.

I think that the changes you're making sound good - you shouldn't feel like you have to jump head first into the deep end! You may find that, as you make these beginning changes, that you want to go farther. Then again, you may decide it just doesn't work for you. The bottom line is that if you don't like how you eat, it isn't something you'll stick to.

It's definitely more than fruit and chicken breasts, though! I eat oats with fruit and yogurt, whole grain toast and natural peanut butter, omelettes loaded with veggies. Roast salmon, fresh turkey breast, sweet potatoes, sauteed spinach, fruit salad, greek couscous, brown rice pilaf, big asian stir-frys. I drink chai tea, and enjoy dark chocolate now and again. There really is a tremendous variety of really whole, healthy foods out there - and limitless ways to prepare them. I'm definitely never bored!
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Old 03-28-2007, 09:34 PM   #4  
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Here's a topic from the Whole Foods/Mediterranean forum that might interest you:

http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/showthread.php?t=90911

There's also a wealth of information in the various topics over there, if you want to check it out!
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Old 03-28-2007, 09:55 PM   #5  
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Exactly what Sugarlove said (including the part about the plain yogurt!)! I would type an answer, but I can really just quote hers!

"When I use the words "prepackaged", I typically mean it in terms of snack foods, processed foods - foods that either are usually full of empty calories, or where the food no longer bears much resemblance to the real thing. Foods that have long ingredient lists, that contain chemicals, artificial colors, HFCS, trans fats, etc. I try to eat as many whole foods as possible - foods that are as close to they way they occur in nature. An example would be an apple instead of commercial apple sauce or juice. Steel cut oats instead of Quaker instant. Brown rice instead of instant or even white.

I do typically eat whole wheat pasta, whole grain bread. I do most of my cooking from scratch, so yes - things like pasta sauce, I make my own. Keep in mind, though, that I love to cook so this isn't a chore in my eyes! You can certainly find good quality commercial products - it isn't so much about never eating anything pre-prepared, but rather making good healthy choices and putting quality first."
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Old 03-28-2007, 11:19 PM   #6  
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For me it is about eating food that has as few additives, or 'extras' as possible, understanding that my life doesn't allow me to spend hours cooking things from scratch or searching out special ingredients. I have done some reading and research to understand why the organic label is more important (nutiritionally, not politically or economically) for some foods than others, for example. I try to build simple meals, and have found that they often have much less fat and carbs than the foods that come already 'made.' I like experimenting with spices and with thai, indian, mexican and other recipes that respect fresh food. But hey, I live in a northern climate and for 10 months of the year there is nothing edible grown locally, so I try to be realistic about how far I can go. I do believe that the closer your food choices are to fresh the better, and the less you rely on the food industry preservatives the better. We are surrounded by chemicals - in the air, water, food...anything we can do to lessen the load our bodies carry, the happier and healthier we will be.
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Old 03-28-2007, 11:24 PM   #7  
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I take it to mean foods, rather than ingredients.

Oats are an ingredient. Oatmeal bars are a packaged food. Meat is an ingredient. Lunchmeat is a packaged food.
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:09 AM   #8  
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I agree with the others-if you buy a box of whole wheat spaghetti, it is basically just the dried whole grain making it...and you can read the ingredients-but if you buy a box of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese or Hamburger Helper-it is a different story. The same thing goes if you read the box of a container of oats to make oatmeal-you can "read" it, and know what is in it...but do you really know (understand) all the ingredients in Froot Loops?

Foods can be in packages...but the goal is to aim for more "whole", natural ingredients in the food-rather than Red #5 dye, polysorbate 80, and high fructose corn syrup.
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Old 03-29-2007, 11:26 AM   #9  
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I try to stay away from high fructose corn syrup, "enriched" flours, saturated or trans fat, and other weird unpronouncable chemicals. Just read the label...you can get a can of tomatoes that are organic and low sodium with barely any additives for your pasta sauce. Anything that I can eat that is raw (fruits and veggies that is) is good. And yogurt with Kashi cereal is YUMMY (beware though, too much Kashi can make you gassy!!!).
Lean Cuisines are pretty good for you now too. They've taken out a lot of their preservatives, etc. So even though it is packaged, it is still pretty wholesome.
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Old 03-29-2007, 02:00 PM   #10  
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I stay away from "enriched" and "hydrogenated" and HCFS if it is in the top 5 ingredients. I prefer things with few ingredients. There isn't anything wrong with buying something in a package as long as the ingredients from which it is made are good for you. It's all that processing and mixing in of unpronounceable ingredients that are problematic.

For example: I'll buy a box of Triscuits (ingredients, whole wheat, soybean oil, salt) but not a box of CheezIts (enriched flour, vegetable oil made from something partially hydrogenated and tons of other things).
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Old 03-29-2007, 02:08 PM   #11  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coinlee View Post
Lean Cuisines are pretty good for you now too. They've taken out a lot of their preservatives, etc. So even though it is packaged, it is still pretty wholesome.

YEAH!! This is just about the only packaged food I eat...kids are in school its too easy just to microwave a lean cuisine a couple times a week!!

I wouldn't say I obessess over eating clean, but stick to more natural foods, without even thinking about it......tons of raw veggies., Plain oatmeal.....egg whites (sometimes, I dont like eggs) I rarely eat meat because I just dont like it, but do cook tons of beans, which I always used dried beans....

My couple Lean Cuisines a week and a can soup every now and then is about it....I tend to eat the same things... LENTILS, KASHI PILAF, BROWN RICE, VEGGIES VEGGIES VEGGIES, sprouts (do my own).....oatmeal....just basics...
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Old 03-29-2007, 02:53 PM   #12  
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"Enriched" is standard for white flour. They add in B vitamins and folic acid. Check the flour at your supermarket (yes, it will have an ingredient list, and the list will be one or more kinds of flour, then vitamins) if you don't have a package at home to read from.

"Modified" is where the processing gets weird and un-food like.
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Old 03-29-2007, 03:01 PM   #13  
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I agree with everyone here. It's not about whether something comes in a package, but how processed a food is.

I do make a lot of things from scratch, but that's just because I'm a bit crazy and I love to cook. Making your own yogurt, bread, jams, etc. is not for everyone and I only do it when I have time. My DH loves to help me make bread, so for us it's fun together time, but we still don't do it too often.

When I'm short on time I really like the fage yogurt or any brand that is just milk and cultures, I make sure my bread has no HFCS in it (I look for no sweetner at all), and I prefer jams that are only fruit and fruit juice.
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Old 03-29-2007, 03:25 PM   #14  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zenor77 View Post
I prefer jams that are only fruit and fruit juice.
This is a small town, not many Jam choices (very small grocery store)...I dont like it personally but my kids do...Anyways, I normally get an organic one out of town, and never paid attention at the local grocery and what was available...I spent a LONG time looking at the jelly, jams and preserves...almost ALL of them contain HFCS!!! I finally found a dusty 100% fruit preserves jar in the back...THIS is the reason I normally dont shop locally for other than fresh veggies..they dont carry many of the healthier brands...
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Old 03-29-2007, 03:33 PM   #15  
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The Polaner brand is just fruits and juices.

Of course, fruit juice is just another sugary sweetener, it's not actually nutritious.
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