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How To Know What You're Really Eating...


The Holistic Health and Wellness Centre is passionate about and committed to achieving balance and overall well-being for your mind, body and soul.

With the cooler weather making a comeback (let's be honest - did we really even have a Summer?), it’s easy to reach for the comfort food - the warm and soulful food that may not be the healthiest choice!

This blog is about taking control of your health and how you can easily remove toxins and additives from your food, without compromising on taste, especially as the cooler weather sets in.

The number 1 thing to remember is that your health all starts at the supermarket.

What you put into your trolley is what goes into your body. If your trolley is filled with chips, chocolate, lollies, biscuits and processed foods, what is this doing to you on the inside? What nutritional support is this providing you with?

I am not saying that these foods should never be consumed, I am saying that your body needs a balance of wholesome, fresh food to operate at its maximum capacity.

When you’re out shopping, don’t be deceived by so called ‘healthy’ labels and common keywords like ‘fresh’, ‘natural’ and ‘no added colours or flavours’. Labels can be and are often misleading to provide consumers with a false sense of security with regard to what they are buying. You may actually be surprised to know that some of the ingredients in our common supermarket products are banned internationally.

So how do you know what you’re really eating? That’s easy – if you’re not buying fresh fruits, vegetables and organic proteins, you are buying foods that contain preservatives for optimal shelf life. There’s an app I love, which I find to be fantastic – really easy to operate with a traffic light colour coded system and soooooooo useful. It’s called ‘Chemeleon’ and I’ve been using it for years. What’s so great about this app is that all of the cryptic ingredients and numbers are explained and detailed. It even tells you all the countries that the ingredients are banned in! A word of warning – you will be shocked!

Just to give you a quick example, did you know Talc is found in chocolate and confectionery? The number shows up as 553b and it is created from magnesium sulphate and silicone silicate. Not only is it found in some chocolate and confectionery, it can also be found in icing sugar, noodles, polished rice and medicinal tablets. 553b has been directly linked with stomach cancer and the odds are, you didn’t even know it was in your food...

Tips to Remember at the Supermarket:

Avoid buying processed foods as these will contain the food additives and toxins that need to be avoided. Wherever possible, buy organic and prepare your food yourself. I personally love the Farmer’s Markets and you can really taste the difference.

Step 1 If you really want to know what you are putting into your body, you need to be willing to make a positive change in your life.

Step 2 Ignore the labels that are plastered all over the products you are buying and stick to reading the ingredients listed. Remember, fresh food that comes from the Earth doesn't require labels!

Step 3 If you see an ingredient that is controversial to you, or you don’t know what it is either: search the ingredient on Chemeleon to see if it is safe OR put it back on the shelf.

I understand that we are social creatures, so eating home cooked food is not always possible. When you are out at restaurants or cafes don’t be afraid to ask questions! You have every right to know what is in the food you are about to eat! You can request food that is cooked simply, grilled and seasoned with salt, pepper and lemon juice. If you are like me and you need a good (gluten free) sauce or dressing – ask for it to be served on the side. My absolute favourite which is the simplest and tastiest of them all in my opinion is olive oil and balsamic vinegar. When it comes to desert, and let’s face it, there are many of us who are suckers for a sweet ending to our meal – choose carefully! Many common deserts are loaded with added sugar and calories, some of which are the equivalent to our entire daily intake. If you can, opt for a chocolate desert with at least 70% or 80% cocoa or even poached fruit or fruit salad.

It takes 90 days to create a healthy habit, so stay focused on getting to know what you are really eating! Your health and body will love you for it.

Love & Light, xx Sandra Stoitis xx

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