1. You know me… My list is fairly short. I’ve tended to rely heavily on processed, easy-to-make foods. Don’t get me wrong, we eat lots of plain old meat, veggies, and fruits. But we also have an ample supply of KD, chicken nuggets, and packaged granola bars (dipped in chocolate!).
    One item has been on my list since I was a teenage girl – aspartame. I’ve always said that I’d rather my children have a spoonful of white sugar than a sit of aspartame.
    My parents are big Diet C drinkers, so my kids always want some. And every now and then I’ll allow about a 1/4 cup so they stop harassing me. But by and large this is one of my few soapbox issues when it comes to food.
    Aspartame gives me headaches, nausea, dizzyness, and other flu-like symptoms. Blech! AND, I just recently saw a study shared on FB – which is where all the accurrate news originates from – that researchers are finally linking aspartame to a few types of cancers. I don’t recall all of them, but lieukemia (sp?) and lymphoma were on the list.

  2. Wow what a great article to read and one that will definatly make me look closer at what I buy at the store! I do drink diet mountain dew and regular dr. pepper I need to look in to those to see what is in them. I can’t wait to read part 2!!!!

  3. Great information: I try to avoid, any artificial sweeteners, colors, HFCS and highly processed junk. I hate that this is not the norm and people always question me about this when I try to feed my child healthy!

    1. Yeah, Jen, me too. I just throw myself under the bus and say something like, “I’m just a health nut–it stinks to be my kid.” And then smile as I hand my kid an apple.

  4. Reading this makes me sad in many ways, because I used to be VIGILANT with my two older kids for years. I read one of Andrew Weil’s books and I promptly stopped buying anything with hydrogenated oil, high fructose corn syrup, and any kind of BHT type ingredient.
    Over the last five years, I would say, I’ve gotten slack. For a long time we didn’t eat fast food at all and I was so good!
    It’s complicated and not when I look back at what happened…but really it boils down to being lazy, and using the excuse that it’s expensive to buy organic. It is something I need to revisit. Very timely post. (I’ve said that before! 🙂 ) I have the rash desire to throw away all of the candy my kids have just acquired!!
    And we are firm on aspartame. My husband discovered he had some kind of allergy or adverse reaction, and our kids are pretty much forbidden to eat anything containing that.

    On an unrelated note, it was great that you visited my blog, and I just discovered your comment today! You thanked me for adding you to my blogroll, and I just wanted to say that after I read the first post here I added it! I love your humor, and you have written something that spoke right to what I was experiencing (and I mean directly!) most of the times that I have visited. So, thank you!! 🙂

      1. Don’t apologize!!! Don’t YOU love it when people leave long comments on your blog??? I do! And I’m so glad you saw my comment on yours. And it makes me happy that you feel such a connection to what I write. Thank you for telling me that.

  5. I can’t stand artificial sweeteners – that is top of my list too. I’ve taken to sweetening most things with honey or real maple syrup.

    Great list and excellent information. I found you through Jill’s blog hop. I look forward to the next piece in the series.

  6. Hi there just wanted to give you a brief
    heads up and let you know a few of the images aren’t loading correctly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue.

    I’ve tried it in two different browsers and both show the same results.

  7. Nice post! I’m also careful to avoid artificial sweeteners–all of them–because even aside from the health risks, they make me feel really awful very quickly! The only place I allow them is in chewing gum, because I’m swallowing small enough amounts at a time to avoid the effect (as long as I don’t chew gum when I’m hungry; even a tiny amount hitting my empty stomach is a problem) and because sugared gum is so bad for the teeth. Nobody in our family chews gum really frequently, though.

    I use this handy chart of food additives to figure out what to avoid and what’s not a big deal. They say sucralose may be safe (not that I’ll risk it!) but they warn strongly against another artificial sweetener, acesulfame potassium. The additive I never thought was dangerous, that I learned about from this chart, is caramel coloring.

    1. Yeah–the information on food safety differs, depending on who you read. I’ve seen similar things about the safety of Sucralose, but I’ve read enough bad things to wonder how safe a chemical sweetener of any sort can be for the long-term. And from doing research for this series, I also learned about the dangers of caramel coloring–which I happened to feed my child at lunch today in the form of A1 Steak Sauce.

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