Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Sugar Woes

I've been eating instant oatmeal for breakfast (when I don't have a husband, restaurant or dining hall to prepare it for me) since like 2004. At first I ate whatever landed on my doorstep when the school year ended and everyone moved out. That summer I think I ended up with like 12 boxes of oatmeal and never needed to buy any! After that I started to buy it at costco. There was an organic variety that was awesome because the packets were bigger! They had like 50% more and that made for a filling breakfast.

Fast forward to March 2010. Costco had stopped carrying the organic stuff and I bought a big box of quaker oatmeal from costco, but the packets were smaller, less flavorful and had a handful of "original" flavor, which is code for tastes like cardboard. I was out of the big costco box so on a trip to the grocery store I tried to buy oatmeal. Talk about overload! There were easily 40 different things I could have purchased. I eventually settled on something from ralphs without any "original" flavor and that says it's an excellent source of lots of things I need including fiber! It also claimed to be lower sugar, which since sweet things haven't been high on my list, seemed like an excellent description. My run through of the ingredients didn't show any artificial sweeteners in the store, so I just bought it and went on with my weekend. And the second ingredient was sugar in all of them, so seriously, why would they bother adding anything artificial?

My first bite of this oatmeal tasted like plastic. That's how artificial sweeteners taste to me right now. I can't quite figure out how I ever liked diet coke (not that I drank it much, but the flavor was ok). I've been eating it anyway, and today I tried the third and final flavor. I decided, since this was the most plasticy, to look up the mystery ingredients. All three flavors contain Maltitol and Neotame, artificial sweeteners. I have an ever growing list of chemical words and names in my head that are suppose to go on the list of things I don't eat. And yet they keep appearing in my foods!

I don't want to shop at Whole Foods, even though it's convenient for me. I find the store pretentious and judging not to mention extraordinarily expensive. I want to be able to go to Ralphs and just make smart decisions. But seriously, when I need to pull out a reference sheet to figure out if something is safe to eat or not I'm not very encouraged.

Yesterday I was all excited about parenthood. Today I'm a little afraid. I know I'll figure it out, but wow, this crazy oatmeal was a wake-up call.

In an unrelated note, I'm 11 weeks today!

Days Pregnant: 77
Days to go: 203



  2. don't shop at whole foods.

    i watched some documentary or something where the filmmakers found that a large portion of the frozen vegetables at whole foods are from china. they bought the bags and accosted customers outside with their findings. even "california blend" vegetables are a product of china. oh, and there is very little policing of whether or not something can be labeled organic when it is imported.

    while i am not making a case for shunning chinese vegetables, my point is that whole foods wants to look "better" than average grocery stores because it is "organic" and "progressive" when really it's just another corporation. what i don't like about it is that they are trying to hide that fact. they want to pretend to be your local market when they're anything but.

    not to mention it's nicknamed whole paycheck for a reason.

    i buy my foods at real local groceries that actually buy local and i get my produce at farmer's markets. lucky for me they take food stamps at farmers markets. :)

    do you want me to find some good oatmeal to send you?