What to Eat

Awesome look into the world of food politics and nutrition as Nestle leads us down each aisle in the grocery store to break down what those confusing labels mean and why they’re there. Each chapter ends with a recap of how she recommends you proceed (e.g. for produce, the priority order is 1- organic and locally farmed, 2- organic, 3- conventionally grown and locally farmed, 4 – conventionally grown).
This reinforced a lot of common sense ideas about shopping the perimeter of the store for the best unprocessed foods (produce, dairy). I also learned how milk is broken down into its various categories (skim, 1%, 2%) through separation and reconstitution, including whole milk. This is done to remove the cream from the watery whey. Skim milk has the same amount of calcium as whole milk.
The politics surrounding rbST labeling (FDA won’t make the call that rbST is bad for cows/humans, but ultimately cows that are injected with rbST have higher incidence of infection and thus antibiotics that get into the milk) involve evil Monsanto.
Yogurt is simply a desert- 12g of sugar, but there might be favorable results from the friendly bacteria.
Fish higher up in the food chain (predators) generally have higher mercury levels. Smaller fish like tilapia and salmon are better than tuna. Imitation crab meat (surimi) is lacking all nutritional content, made up of smaller fish rinsed and pressed into a block and liquefied.
Whole grains are good for you (shocking!), and when the whole grains are sold in most breads, they’re just disguising white bread.
Stay away from high fructose corn syrup (HFCS).
Juices are ok, but high in calories. Ones with pulp are best, since pulp is where the nutrients are.
Solid vegetable oils are high in saturated fats. If it’s solid, it’s saturated.
Vegetable oil that’s not specific about its origin is usually soy oil.
Further resources:
USDA Food Composition Tables
Safe fish list
Marion Nestle’s blog

auth=Nestle, Marion
sub=An Aisle-by-Aisle Guide to Savvy Food Choices and Good Eating