You Tired of Being Fooled

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					The best way to avoid excessive salt, sugar and fat is to read labels.
The best way to avoid reading that fine print is to eat produce. That's
right. The time that you have been taking to read all those labels is
better spent preparing a meal with lots of fresh produce that have no
labels. Now it becomes a choice between whether you should buy organic or
not. Sometimes, as with my budget, you cannot afford to go organic. Or
can you?

Maybe it is time to think about gardening. Those green leafy vegetables
are pretty easy to grow. Sweet peas, broccoli, cauliflower, and many
lettuces can handle the cooler climates of spring. Planting near shade
reduces the amount of hot sun as temperatures increase. It is a great
feeling to pick your own salad all summer long.

Just because the food processing industry and restaurants do not want to
spend the money to flavor foods with nutritional spices and herbs,
doesn't mean that you can't do it yourself. I stopped buying flavored
canned beans, when I remembered I used to spice the plain ones myself. A
little mustard, some cumin, paprika or Liquid Smoke and I am satisfied
that I have prepared them the way I like, avoided additives and, as a
bonus, saved a bit of money. Plain tomato sauce can be spiced the way you
want, and it's usually cheaper than the spaghetti sauces in a jar.

If you are retired, that means that you should have more time to avoid
salt and eat healthier. So there is no excuse not to try gardening or
buying more fresh fruits and vegetables. Gardening is good exercise.
Start small and see if you feel the wonder of little sprouts and green
leaves peaking out of the ground.

Part of the problem is that we all eat out too much and don't know what
we are eating. You can look up most chain restaurants online and see how
much salt, sugar and fat are in their menu choices. According to the
Center for Disease Control these ten foods are responsible for almost
half of the sodium/salt that we consume. They are breads and rolls, cold
cuts, cured or processed meats, pizza, fresh poultry, soups, cheese,
spaghetti and other pasta dishes, meatloaf and meat dishes and, finally,
snacks like potato chips and pretzels.

It looks like what most of us consider for lunch or take-out food is not
so good for us. Perhaps it is time to reconsider the salad. Pizza has
lots of cheese and meats, which have lots of salt. Remember how thirsty
you are after a pizza?

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