Tag Archives: health awareness

Get to know the controversial food additive Olestra!


Foodfacts.com wants to help you learn more about what controversial food additives are being put into your foods. Olestra is a fat substitute used in the cooking and preparation of foods, most commonly those foods normally containing high concentrations of fat. Potato chips were one of the first commercially available products to have it used in their preparation. The benefit is the extreme lowering or complete elimination of a traditionally fatty food’s fat content. Like insoluble fiber found in corn and apples, olestra is not digested or absorbed by the body, and it passes through the human digestive system completely unchanged.
Olestra, also known by the brand name Olean®, was discovered by researchers Fred Mattson and Robert Volpenhein of Proctor & Gamble (P&G) in 1968. The original study, which surrounded fats that could be more easily digested by premature infants, led to P&G contacting the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1971 to investigate the testing that would be necessary to manufacture and market Olean® as a food additive, specifically as a fat replacement.

In the testing that followed, P&G scientists noted an interesting side effect when olestra was used to replace natural dietary fats. A drop in the level of blood cholesterol resulted when olestra was used. P&G subsequently filed a request with the FDA to market olestra as a drug in the treatment of high cholesterol. However, P&G’s studies failed to produce the 15% decline in cholesterol levels to quality olestra as a treatment.

It wasn’t until 1996 that the FDA finally approved olestra as a food additive. The first product to use Olean® as a substitute for dietary fat was the WOW® brand of potato chips by Frito-Lay®. Following their national launch in 1998, the WOW® chips were initially successful, raking in sales in excess of $400 million US Dollars (USD). However, due largely to reports of certain unpleasant side effects that were subsequently listed on a health warning label on the product as mandated by the FDA, sales dropped sharply.
The side effects—including loose stools, abdominal cramping, and olestra’s interference with the body’s ability to absorb certain crucial vitamins, namely Vitamins A, D, E, and K—were enough to cut sales in half by 2000 to $200 million USD. Although the intestinal side effects, which became commonly known as “anal leakage” in the media, occurred only as a result of over-consumption, it was enough to tarnish the product’s reputation and diminish consumer appeal. Citing further studies, the FDA decided that the warning label wasn’t warranted and approved its removal despite complaints numbering over 20,000 regarding side effects. It has also been proven since the time of the original studies that Olean® has no impact on the body’s ability to absorb fat-soluble vitamins.

Olestra, under the brand name Olean®, is still used primarily as a fat substitute in the manufacture of certain savory snack foods including Lays® Light Potato Chips, Doritos® Light Snack Chips, Pringles® Light Potato Crisps, Ruffles® Light Potato Chips, and Tostitos® Light Tortilla Chips. The FDA declared Olean® as “Generally Regarded As Safe” (GRAS) in late 2008 for use in the production of prepackaged, ready-to-eat cookies using Olean® BakeLean. BakeLean products are proprietary blends of Olean® and vegetable oils used as a substitute for butter, margarine, and shortening in the manufacture of baked goods, reducing the calories and fat content of the end product by 75%. Olean® is not approved for use or sale in Canada or the European Union.

Article provided by wisegeek.com

Yeast Infection Diet: The Foods to Consume and Foods to Avoid


The following is a guest post written by Candida expert Linda Allen who is the creator of Yeast Infection No More a highly recommended Yeast infection diet program. Yeast infection No More is our #1 recommended Candida Diet!

Candida or Candida Albicans is actually a yeast infection that affects a lot of women from all over the world. Interestingly however, the yeast actually remains normally within the human body – inside the vagina and the digestive system. This fungus also sometimes travels throughout the body and affects the intestines, heart valves and even the throat.

But sometimes, the levels of candida can shoot up, and this is when it begins to cause problems. The woman becomes a victim of a disease that is known as Candidiasis. The fact is, the level of candida is kept in check by the good probiotic bacteria within the body and also by the natural immune system. But people who have a poor immune system are prone to getting this disease and the overuse of antibiotics can also be harmful because they kill the good bacteria and also make the immune system dependent on the medicines on the long term.

Here Are Some Causes of Candidiasis
•Pregnancy can also cause this
•Overuse of steroids, antacids, oral contraceptives, antibiotics and anti-ulcer medications
Another important issue is the yeast infection diet. Experts are of the opinion that a proper or improper diet can either prevent the onset of yeast infection or it can make the condition worse. In other words, if you are not eating the right kind of food or if your eating regimen is not proper, then it can work as a trigger to make you suffer from candidiasis.

Yeast Infection Diet– The Importance of the Right Diet
Candida constantly changes within the body, and the fact is that, it cannot be killed that simply. To successfully eliminate an infection, you must change the internal environment that is responsible for causing it to overgrow and the blood cells to become pleomprphic.

Changing your diet to a yeast infection diet is among the first and the most important things that you can do. Your approach here should actually be two pronged. This means, you must on the one hand avoid all those foods that make the condition worse, and on the other hand, you should consume all those foods that can fight candida.

Candida yeast infections feed on sugar, gluten grains, processed foods, mucus-forming foods and all refined carbohydrates. So by eliminating or strictly minimizing the consumption of these foods, we deprive candida from its food supply that helps it to multiply.

You should actually consume anti-candida foods on a yeast infection diet. By eating healthy, hormone-balancing, cleansing and nutritious foods, or following a yeast infection diet you will be able to cleanse or detoxify your body and thus normalize the hormonal production levels. You will also be able to build a stronger immune system to help the body defend itself against candida, parasites and other fungi. Remember, a poor immunity is one of the root causes of candidiasis.

Yeast Infection Diet – The Foods That You Must Always Avoid or Try to Minimize
Though there are quite a few foods that can make the condition worse or work as a trigger, but the fact remains that, dairy products (particularly milk from cow) are among the most notorious yeast infection-aggravating products that you can ever find. They cause allergies, create heavy mucus, and they clog your digestive tracts as they become like glue once they enter your bowels. And products made from dairy are also filled with antibiotics, which is destructive to your body and hormonal balance.

You might be surprised to know that humans are the only species that drink milk from another species. So it is best to avoid dairy products as much as possible.

If you are concerned about your candida, a yeast infection diet also avoids refined sugar. The cakes you eat, sodas, cookies, and even the breakfast cereals may not be that healthy because there are huge quantities of refined sugar in them. And in extreme cases, it is also best to avoid consuming a lot of grapes, bananas, and apples in a yeast infection diet because they also contain high amounts of sugar.

You must also try to check your levels of high glycemic carbohydrates. So try to reduce your levels of carbohydrates in your food as much as you can as part of a yeast infection diet.

Yeast Infection Diet – Foods That Can Help You Fight Candida
•Vegetables – eat a lot of them and eat fresh
•High protein foods such as fish, eggs, chicken and beef
•Coconut oil – Use this when you are cooking your food because it has potent anti-fungal properties. It comes with Caprylic acid and Lauric acid, and both of them can prevent the onset of an attack.
•Garlic – It can preserve and boost the bacteria in your digestive system and has antifungal properties too. Flavor your food with garlic.
•Onions – There are many candida victims who retain more water in the body than they should. Onion will help them flush out the excess water, and it has anti-parasitic, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties too.
•Almonds – Keep your candida away with almonds in a yeast infection diet. Research has proved that they can help good bacteria to grow and unlike some animal products or nuts, they are excellent for alkaline protein. If you cannot digest almonds easily, then soak them first.
Yes it is an established fact that the right yeast infection diet is very crucial for candida. However it is essential to know that changing to a yeast infection diet plan may not be enough. That is because there are many causes of candida – a wrong diet is not the only cause. So for best results, you should actually opt for holistic remedies because they treat the body as a whole to identify all the root causes and then eliminate them. Of course once the root causes all go away, candida and its symptoms cannot bother you anymore.

This article was provided by our friends over at www.candidafood.com

Overcoming Social Isolation and dealing with Celiac Disease


Today’s featured blog comes from Jennifer who is a foodfacts.com member who struggles from Celiac Disease….

“The phone rings…it’s my friend calling to see if I would like to come over to dinner. Little does she know that I have just been diagnosed with Celiac disease and I’m now nervous about eating at other people’s homes. I’m still learning what to eat and how to read labels. I feel my heart beat increase, and my palms start to sweat. “What is this weird feeling,” I ask myself. I feel like I’m going to panic…and all over a social invitation. “What’s wrong with me, this shouldn’t be a big deal. It never was before, I’ve always just done what I wanted.” Oh yeah, I remind myself, it’s because I don’t know if I will be able to eat if I go over. Maybe I just shouldn’t go. Maybe I should just stay home and eat the few foods I know are “safe.” But, I miss my friends. They are important to me. I really want to go. So, now what do I do?

Does this situation seem familiar to you? It does to me because I had this happen on numerous occassions, especially when newly diagnosed. Every once-in-a-while, it still happens, but I’m no longer afraid of it.

Let’s take the above scenario and layout an example conversation of what to say and do to overcome the social anxiety that has arisen.

First, take a deep breath. Maybe, take three…and try to clear your mind. Remember, a good friend will generally do their best to understand and help you out…as you would likely do the same for them.

Next, thank your friend for the invitation. Ask, if they have a moment, for you to explain your current situation. Then you can say something like this, “Remember when I told you I was having some tests done due to digestive issues.” Response, “Yes.” You, “Well, I got my results back and I found out that I have an autoimmune disease called Celiac. I had no idea what this was until my Dr. explained that it means my body cannot tolerate the protein gluten, which is found in wheat, rye and barley. There are significant health consequences that can occur if I continue to eat these foods, so I am having to change my entire diet and can’t eat the same foods I always have. So, while I would love to accept your invitation, I would need to have a bit more involvement in the dinner plan, or at least need to know if you are preparing something that I can’t eat, so that I can bring something with me and still come. Can we talk about what you will be serving for dinner? ”

Friend, “Sure…” possibly with some other questions and curiosity. “We were planning on having spaghetti. This is the sauce we are using and the spices we have.”

You, “Spaghetti will be fine. I can prepare my own noodles and bring them with me. I looked up the sauce you are using, and it will be fine, however the garlic seasoning that you have is not okay. Would it be okay if I brought over a substitute garlic salt that is on my safe list?”

Friend, “Sure, that will be great.”

You, “Also, since I am still learning myself, would it be okay with you if I helped out in the kitchen that day, just to help make sure that we keep gluten containing foods seperate from gluten free foods. It will be fun to cook together and you will be helping me learn how to eat. I can also bring over a couple of gluten free items so you can taste them too. It would be fun for me to share my new experiences with you.”

Friend, “Sounds good! I look forward to having dinner together.”

You, “Great! See you on Friday!”

Of course there may be more conversation about other parts of the dinner and the disease, but you get the gist. Once you start talking about it openly, you will be amazed at how receptive most people are. Don’t expect them to know or understand unless you tell them. Also, be patient with them, as they will have to learn just as you are having to learn. But, the most important thing to remember is, if you don’t face it and get out there. it will never get easier. Practice and communication are the key to empowering yourself and others to help you on your journey to a healthier, happier you.”

To read more of Jennifer’s blogs and to learn more about Celiac Disease please visit her website: