It was a busy Saturday morning; we left the house in a hurry without a full breakfast, hoping we could grab something quick for the kids on our errands.
As we pulled up to the supermarket I searched for images in my head of anything I remembered seeing inside that resembled ‘food’, knowing the majority would be processed beyond recognition of real food. My mind stumbled across a particular memory of some ‘organic’ yogurt squeezies that were being given out to passing children a few months back, and seeing as both my girls LOVE yogurt I thought maybe…just maybe there was one brand that did not contain added sugar and chemicals.
When I first sighted the great selection of organic brands I admit I got a tad bit excited…surely a brand conscious enough to go organic would have the integrity to offer a reasonably clean product? It even crossed my mind to grab them and run to the check out without spying the ingredients. But alas I could not help myself, and in doing so ensured I could never buy them now or in the future.
The only healthy flavoured yogurt is the one you make yourself- and it’s so easy!
At this point I know you may be thinking ‘TAKE A CHILL PILL’, and if so I ask you to bear with me.
Why I shouldn’t take a chill pill (and don’t shoot me down for saying so)
The majority of packaged foods are nothing short of a chemical shit storm, and it is such a tragedy that as a society we have become so far removed from what real food looks and tastes like, that we (including MYSELF in weak moments) are willing to throw just about any crazy chemical down our gobs so long as it is convenient and tastes good. Even more of a tragedy is all the chemical junk that is added to food specifically marketed to our children-chemicals that have been proven to cause adverse health conditions and behavioral problems. Why? Because what we nourish our children with LITERALLY becomes the building blocks of their developing bodies-is this what we choose to build them with? Many of these chemicals are linked to cancer, autoimmune diseases, diabetes, asthma and ADHD to name a few.
It’s so frustrating, I know!
Clever marketing makes it so darn confusing when it comes to choosing budget friendly, convenient, tasty and healthy food our children will actually eat. It pays to be on guard to any new craze that is quick to plug the words that catch our attention- ALL NATUARL-NO ADDED FLAVOUR-NO PRESERVATIVES- because these products rarely stack up to their claims.
When we are doing our best to avoid these pitfalls, why is it that we cannot expect that when we pick up an ‘Organic’ product we can trust that it is truly organic? I mean come on, when is the last time you saw colours, flavours, emulsifiers, thickeners and acidity regulators growing on organic trees? Some of these may be listed as ‘natural’, but I can assure you there is nothing remotely ‘natural’ about natural flavours and colours, and when these substances are junking up literally everything we eat that comes out of a packet, it is alarming to think just how many our precious children are ingesting each and every day!
Every single parent on the planet wants what is best for their child, but until enough concerned parents are voting with their dollar- by choosing NOT to invest their money in these products- what chance do we stand in changing the frustrating labeling laws that continue to allow this absurdity to con and confuse us?
An easy solution to the ‘squeezie’ craze
Not only is it healthier to make your own, it is so much cheaper too! You can even buy cute refillable squeezie packets – I think these are a fabulous idea, however to be honest they can be a chore to clean and another thing to clutter the kitchen. It can be as simple as spooning some plain, preferably organic yogurt into a little container, topping it with some yummy fresh fruit and slipping it into a cooled lunchbox or into the freezer for a frozen yogurt treat. If children are so taken by the pretty pink hues and sweet flavours of processed yogurts, simply blend some berries and banana or preferred whole food ingredients into the yogurt before serving- this will naturally flavour, colour and sweeten without any hidden nasties.
P.S No matter what food craze there is almost always a healthier, budget friendly and convenient alternative with just a little creativity.
P.P.S The Yogurt Squeezies in this story are obviously a symbol of the hundreds of reasons the food industry has me so worked up