“I wouldn’t say that processed food, ready meals and even takeaways aren’t relevant to modern life, it’s just that over the past 40 years there are three generations of people who have come out of school and gone through their home life without ever being shown how to cook properly.”
– Jamie Oliver
I’m asked often about meal prep delivery services (e.g. Blue Apron, Good Food, Hello Fresh, etc.) Are they good? Are they bad? My answer is: it depends. Do the ingredients contain preservatives, sugar and other funky items, or are you getting fresh whole foods that are minimally processed? Are you ordering a Beef Mac & Cheese or an organic Kale Salad?
I know people are busy, so if these food delivery services are helping people avoid trips to fast food drive thru’s than I think they certainly should be considered. But I also want you to consider the effort these companies put into marketing. Words such as fresh, healthy, low calories, high in protein are often used which lead people to believe that it’s good for them – without checking the ingredients and cooking methods. I wrote about sneaky ingredients in an old blog titled – 4 ingredients to look out for in so-called “healthy” foodsand in that I share the following advice:
When it comes to weight gain and chronic disease, there’s a strong focus on counting calories and exercise output – which are clearly contributors to weight gain but they’re not the only ones. What people don’t understand is the powerful effect of the bad calories or funky ingredients that many processed foods contain. These ingredients cause weight gain by:
- making us crave more bad foods
- activating fat storing hormones
- slowing our metabolism
I like the way Dr. Peter Attia puts it:
“…obesity is a disorder of excess fat accumulation. Fat accumulation is determined not by the balance of calories consumed and expended but by the effect of specific nutrients on the hormonal regulation of fat metabolism. Obesity is a condition where the body prioritizes the storage of fat rather than the utilization of fat.”
The simplest way to avoid these foods is to avoid processed foods all together. Regardless, it’s worth putting on your Sherlock Holmes hat and becoming food label detectives and avoiding the following 4 ingredients . . . (To read the rest of the blog click here).
Unfortunately we’re living in a time when we need to double check, even triple check, our food sources. We can no longer assume that food companies, restaurants or even grocery stores are prioritizing our health over their bottom line. Don’t take the label “healthy” at face value – read the ingredients and see for yourself.
P.S. Looking for some new recipe ideas to try? Check out my recipe archive by clicking here.