Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Lessons learned…..and forgotten….then learned again.

There is that saying that states old dogs, (ie: those of us with more years under our belts), can’t learn new tricks.  Even though I’ve used that saying before it still bugs me.  Of course people of any age can learn new things and improve our situations!  We aren’t stuck in the mud or unable to make changes!  I’ve certainly learned many new things over the last 6+ years in regards to my health.  My question today is: why can’t I remember them?

It’s important to read labels to determine whether or not you can safely add any food to your food plan.  I know that!  Lower fat can sometimes mean higher carbs, lower carbs can sometimes mean ridiculous amounts of fat.  I know that too!  You can’t always believe claims made on food labels, ie: whole grain or low fat etc.  Duh!  I’ve known that for a long time.  If I know so much, then explain to me why I thought that my Eggo Whole Wheat, Low Fat waffles were ok to eat.

Today I read an article online at Huffington Post that slapped me upside the head with the news that Eggo Whole Wheat waffles are not actually whole wheat.  In fact, whole wheat is the third ingredient listed right behind: water and enriched flour.  So basically I’ve been eating paste, or maybe an uncooked roux.  I cannot fully describe the sadness I felt while reading this news.

Here’s the thing, I really wanted to be able to eat waffles so I went out in search of a “healthy” option.  I read the nutrition labels of all the frozen waffles and decided on the Eggo Whole Wheat, Low Fat variety.  I was pretty happy to find them since I wanted to occasionally “splurge” and I always use sugar free syrup.  Yay me!  When I was reading these labels I didn’t bother to read the ingredients, instead relying on the advertising on the box.  Why not?  I suppose I just really wanted those damn waffles and maybe I didn’t want to know the ugly truth.  In reality, I’m able to eat these waffles now and then and they don’t spike my bg.  I choose to eat them when I’ve had a better than average FBS, saving oatmeal and veggie scrambles for those higher mornings. (I’m sad to say that I don’t get to eat the waffles as often as I’d like.  Le sigh)

I could go on eating my waffles but now I don’t feel like I can, knowing what I know.  (Thanks loads, Huff Post).  Having spouted here about how we’re responsible for what we eat it would seem a bit hypocritical for me to ignore my own advice and go on eating frozen paste, wouldn’t it?  Therefore, once this current box of waffles is gone (I can’t waste food, besides there’s only 2 left.) I will no longer be buying my morning meal from Kellogg’s.  

What will I do for my “splurge” now?  I’m going to make my own, whole wheat pancakes.  In truth, I’ve just been damn lazy.  When I’m ready to eat, I want to eat NOW!  It’s time to up my resolve to eat healthier.  That resolve will require me to cook more foods “from scratch” and cut back even more on the convenient.  There aren’t that many “convenient” foods in our larder these days; the waffles are one of the last hold-outs. 

I would like to encourage all of you to pay close attention to the nutrition labels and ingredient lists on the foods you are buying, if you aren’t already.  Strive for lower, healthier fats, lower sodium and whole grains.  Whole grain should be the first ingredient!  Check the ingredient list for hidden trans-fat.  Even if the nutrition label says 0% trans-fat there could still be some hiding in there.  Manufacturers are allowed to put 0% even when there’s a trace.  If you see partially hydrogenated oils in the ingredient list, then you’re eating trans-fat.

In a perfect world we would all be cooking with fresh ingredients and not have to worry so much about how our food is processed.  (In MY perfect world I’d have a cook to do this for me on the days when I just don’t feel like it.)  In today’s busy world it is impossible to not have some stuff that’s processed, ie: canned or frozen, pastas etc.  We can’t all grow our own, which is too bad.

Today I’m wiser.  Today I have re-learned a valuable lesson and I intend to remember it.  Good-bye, dear Eggos, I’m letting you go.


  1. Ah yes, the self delusion on 'healthy' foods. I played this game for years until I was diagnosed. Now I'm much wiser, and vigilant.

    My wife wanted some instant waffles for her an our son. We went through the ingredients and selected these http://www.kashi.com/products/kashi_waffles_7_grain I haven't tried them myself, but the wife and kid like them. Breads are easier for me to avoid than my wife though. We wanted to keep an instant waffle on hand that I could eat if needed. Hope this helps :)

  2. It's amazing how learned things get unlearned, wisdom gets forgotten, and changes get unmade. It's not a steady climb, is it?

  3. Kate, I just discovered your blog (from the DSMA post on Facebook). Thank you!

    I love Nature's Path Buckwheat waffles. If I have two with some good protein (yummy with peanut butter, for example), I don't have any problem with glucose levels afterwards. And they are so very tasty. (They're also naturally gluten-free, which seems to help me control my numbers as well.) Enjoy!


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