Thursday, July 05, 2007

Trans Fat Information

Food Thought of the Week

A lot of attention has been brought to Trans Fats recently, but I wanted to include it in the Food Thought of the Week because while people are aware of Trans Fats, I believe the food labeling is misleading.

Trans Fats are an unfortunate man-made invention and can be found in a lot of foods that we bring into our house as parents (crackers, sandwich bread, frozen baked french fries, etc.) Trans Fats are used by food manufacturers to increase the shelf life of many items. As of Jan 1, 2007 food manufactures are required to print the grams of trans fat on the nutrition label of their products. While this was a good attempt by the FDA to help inform the public, unfortunately the Nutrition Label doesn't tell the entire story.

If the level of trans fat in 1 serving of an item is less than .5 grams, they can publish the item as 0 grams of Trans Fat. As many of us realize by now manufacturers can change the serving size to fall below .5 grams of Trans Fat, and we (or our kids) are eating what we may consider a portion are actually eating 2-3 servings and getting almost 2 grams of trans fat when we thought we were not getting any! This is especially shocking when ideally we shouldn't consume ANY grams of Trans Fat as they (unlike other good fats) are not necessary or beneficial to our health. A good example using Girl Scout cookies is available on

So how do I really know if the food contains trans fat?

The secret is to look in the ingredient label. If you see "partially-hydrogenated" or "hydrogenated" oil of any kind PUT IT BACK ON THE SHELF!

Why should I be concerned? What is so bad about Trans Fats?

Trans fat wreaks havoc on the body and has been linked to heart disease, high cholesterol, liver disease and obesity! I won't rewrite everything here because it is available on Wikipedia (

Information on Trans Fat is also available at WebMD, and Mayo Clinic.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Trader Joe's - Customer in Training

Happy Fourth of July everyone!!

This is Jason in his American Flag t-shirt, shopping for cookout items at Trader Joes! This is his first time with the Trader Joe's mini cart... he was doing fairly well until he ran into mommy in the freezer section and daddy took the cart away :-(

We ran into Kate and Mike with Ella at the Trader Joe's, it's such a small world sometimes! They were not able to make our last minute party due to prior commitments so it was nice to see them to say hello! After Jason's nap we welcomed friends to the house for dinner and drinks. Jason was he usual entertaining self, singing at the dinner table and repeating most of what he heard! Thanks to Michelle, Eddie, Kim, Patrick and younger Patrick for making the trip up north! :-)