Want to become an expert label reader in minutes? Read on as we share the our top 5 ingredients hidden in your snacks. Oh yeah, and these ingredients can cause major gut issues!
Product labels can be so deceiving. Oftentimes, healthy snacks really aren't all that healthy at all. If you look a bit closer at many ingredient lists, you may realize that many supposed healthy ingredients are actually quite dirty.
Avoid Added Sugar
Organic Cane Sugar: There is no real difference between regular sugar and raw cane sugar. Though "raw cane sugar" sounds pretty good, it can contribute to weight gain and disease development if consumed in excess. Although organic cane sugar is less processed than table sugar, it still carries the same damaging effects that too much sugar has on your body and is not beneficial to your microbiome (i).
While eating less processed foods is generally a good thing, eating sugar really isn't all that good ever. Fortunately, there are some great natural alternatives that don't do the number on your body.
Safer Alternatives (ii):
- Maple syrup
- Coconut sugar
- Coconut sap
- Coconut nectar
- Date sugar
- Fruit juice
- Birch xylitol* and monk fruit
Stay Away From Fat-Free
Low-Fat/Fat Free Products: Unfortunately, foods labeled fat-free, reduced fat, low-fat or sugar-free often contain additives like salt, sugar and chemical fillers that make them less-than healthy (iii). Manufacturers often set serving sizes unrealistically small on their nutrition facts to make their calories per serving appear smaller than they actually are. Naturally, this leads people to eat twice as much of these foods in one sitting, which means twice as much of the additives that really aren't so great for your body (iii).
Yes, yes. We know that low fat used to be all the rage. In fact, there are still many people who still think they should stay away from fats as much as possible. The reality is that there are definitely bad fats you should stay away from, but there are good fats that your body NEEDS to operate at optimal levels.
- Healthy Fats
- Nuts and seeds
So... Corn Has No Nutrients
Corn: While Corn is naturally gluten-free, it also contains high amounts of starch, which can raise blood sugar and cause digestive issues. Additionally, most corn is processed and contains refined oils, sugars, and fats (iv). Like all grains, corn contains prolamins, which are a class of proteins that your body can’t properly break down and which can lead to or exacerbate leaky gut and the growth of bad bacteria in your gut (v).
Thankfully, there are many great alternatives to corn products out there, but you'll want to be vigilant that corn-based ingredients like high fructose corn syrup don't make it into your snacks!
- Vegetables and Vegetable Products
- Nuts and Seeds
- Sweet Potatoes
Soy Is Not Safe
Soy: Since soy is overproduced and over processed in the U.S., there is a strong likelihood almost all genetically modified soybeans have Roundup or toxic herbicide inside them (iv). Soy itself can interfere with hormones in both men and women and sometimes causes reproductive issues if consumed in excess. A different form of soy in soybean oil is inflammatory and contains high Omega 6’s that causes weight gain (vi). It's also packed with trypsin and protease inhibitors, enzymes that make the digestion of protein incredibly difficult causing some gastric distress along with deficiency in amino acid uptake if soy is eaten in excess (vi).
- Organic Meats
- Grass-fed and Pastured tallow, lard, and ghee (ii).
- All nut oils are allowed, as well as Avocado Oil, Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, High-Oleic Sunflower Oil, Red Palm Oil, and Palm Shortening (ii).
Eliminate the Wheat Products
Wheat: While so many of us love it, wheat contains gluten and phytates, which can be hard for humans to digest. Gluten and phytates can lead to gut issues like bloating, constipation, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. They can also take away necessary vitamins and minerals and can create intestinal damage (vii). Modern wheat production is highly genetically modified and processed so there are almost zero nutritious benefits to consuming grain (viii).
Still want to bake? There's virtually no problem anymore as non-wheat flours are commonplace nowadays.
- All nut flours are allowed (ii).
- Other allowed flours include, but are not limited to: sweet potato flour, coconut flour, tapioca flour, arrowroot flour, cassava flour, and tigernut flour (ii).
So what do you do now?
Here at Bubba's, our products adhere to the Paleo lifestyle, meaning we never have any of the five ingredients listed above in our snacks and granolas. Should you eat Paleo? Maybe. Maybe not.
We do recommend a diet rich in minimally processed, real foods.
Generally, that means that you should stay away from the five ingredients listed above. Can you cheat on occasion? We certainly won't stop you. But we think the Paleo diet or even a good 30 day cleanse on the Whole30 will help you better understand what is good (or not so good!) for your body.
Start Looking At Those Nutrition Facts Today!
Now that you have a better idea of what to watch out for, you may want to start with our snacks as an example of what honest labelling looks like. There's none of the fluff listed above, and you can indulge with ingredients that nourish your body!
Why not start with our best selling snack, the Savory Original Snack Mix? You'll love it :D