Making News: If Kashi Is Great, Why Is Kellogg Changing Labeling? And More!
I am so excited for those of you who have decided to join me in the #SuitYourself Campaign! If you missed it, it’s not too late! And if you’re not going to be out in the sun, then snap a picture in your house. Doesn’t have to be fancy.
In other news…
Did you hear about Kellogg?
They were recently in a class-action lawsuit because of their labeling several Kashi cereals as “All-natural” and “Nothing Artificial”.
Except there were ingredients that were clearly not all natural and clearly artificial.
Oh food labeling, how you break my heart.
This is only one of a few news events that have caught my eye recently. One that I felt deserved to be talked about, so that’s what we’re going to do today.
It’s time for a new episode of “Making Fitness News” in today’s podcast!
Plus, it’s been a while since Mr. Dan has been on the show.
What The Fitness:
Making Fitness News
Want to read the stories we discussed above? Or perhaps don’t have time to listen in now?
Plaintiffs in the lawsuit, filed in 2011 in California, said the company used terms on Kashi products that contained ingredients like pyridoxine hydrochloride, calcium pantothenate and soy oil processed using hexane, a component of gasoline.
Such ingredients occur naturally — wheat germ and flaxseed are sources of pyridoxine hydrochloride, for example — but food companies, as well as makers of vitamins, often use synthetic versions to control costs and ensure consistent supplies.
Kellogg says they stand behind their labeling, but have agreed to correct their labels by the end of the year according to the lawsuit settlement.
Too bad, the Kashi brand isn’t the only “healthy food” that has been sued… Bear Naked Granola has also been brought to trial as well as Chobani.
Does it make anyone else sad that these HUGE companies, that people trust, are “stretching the truth”? It isn’t a surprise but it is disheartening that we really have no clue what is good for us and what isn’t.
I did a bit of research…
- Kellogg aquired Kashi in 2000 from Philip and Gayle Tauber who had started the business in 1984 after getting involved in a body building gym in LA. They saw how important a roll nutrition played in results and wanted to create something that was balanced in whole grains, complex carbs and protein… that also tasted great.
- In April 2012, Kashi received bad press after a Rhode Island grocer discovered that the company was using genetically engineered, non-organic ingredients. This led the company to give the following statement:
“The FDA has chosen not to regulate the term ‘natural,’ ” he says. The company defines natural as “food that’s minimally processed, made with no artificial colors, flavors, preservatives or sweeteners.”
- Again in 2012, Kellogg donated $790,000 to California’s “No on Prop 37 Campaign”. Prop 37 would make it mandatory for companies to label genetically engineered food. The proposition was defeated.
Makes me wonder… what would Philip and Gayle think of such processing and manufacturing decisions? After all the name Kashi was created out of their believe for an all natural line of food…
- Kashi is a combination of “kashrut” which means kosher, and “Kushi” which is the last name of Michio and Aveline Kushi who helped to bring the modern macrobiotic diet to the US.
Continuing with the label war. Why? Because it’s important!
BVO and rBST are two ingredients that are banned in other countries, yet acceptable here in the states. Why? Good question…
- Lucky for Coca-Cola drinkers, the company announced just recently that it will drop brominated vegetable oil (BVO) from all of it’s drinks. I love that Coke is still standing behind the idea that using BVO is safe… then why the need to remove it? And why is it banned in Europe and Japan? Just a thought.
Those are both valid questions, so let’s talk about it…
What is BVO (besides brominated vegetable oil)?
- BVO a complex mixture of plant-derived triglycerides that have been reacted to contain atoms of the element bromine bonded to the molecules.
- When citrus oil is added to beverages it tries to separate. Think oil and water. BVO is used to keep the citrus oil emulsified into the drink… it prevents to flavor from floating on top of the base drink.
- It’s also used outside of the food industry for being flame retardant.
- Currently BVO is in Powerade, Gatorade, Mountain Dew, Squirt, Fresca, and Fainta
Along with Coke, Pepsi has also announced that it will be removing BVO from Gatorade to please consumers.
It’s about time.
Is BVO Really Bad For You?
Before answering this, let’s discuss it’s history.
- In 1958, it was approved by the FDA. But after some initial studies, the FDA changed it’s mind in the 70s to giving it “interim status”. With this, manufacturers were allowed to use BVO but with the understanding that this might change pending the outcome of further studies. Those studies have yet to take place and BVO has been left in this sate of limbo.
- As far as I could find, the longest study on BVO was only 4 months, while most food additives receive 2+ years of research… interesting?
- BVO is banned in Europe, India, and Japan
So now let’s talk about BVO and the body…
- There is evidence that in high amounts BVO is toxic to the body. Causing muscle loss, memory loss, fatigue, and even skin conditions. This was seen in a hospital case in 1997 when a man walked in with all these symptoms. The doctors were stumped until realizing his blood was extremely high in bromide and he confessed to drinking 2-4 liters of citrus soda per day.
- Bromide used to be used as a sedative, so it’s no surprise that high levels of BVO can cause fatigue.
- Bromide is stored in fatty tissues and though minimal research has been done, BVO has been linked to infertility, headaches, brain development, heart concerns and thyroid function.
A 1971 study by Canadian researchers found that rats fed a diet containing 0.5 percent brominated oils grew heavy hearts and developed lesions in their heart muscle. In a later study, in 1983, rats fed the same oils had behavioral problems, and those fed 1 percent BVO had trouble conceiving. At 2 percent, they were unable to reproduce.
The truth is there are quite a few ingredients that are banned in other countries but yet are welcome in American foods…
- Food Colorings (Blue #1 and #2; Yellow #5 and #6; Red #40)
- Bovine Growth Hormone (rBST)
- Potassium Bromate
- GMO (Genetically modified organisms)
What are all of these and what common foods can you find them in? Here’s a post I did not too long ago that can help shed light:
Time for some fun chat…
This past weekend I had to shop for an 80-s inspired outfit for a party. While going in and out of the teen bopper stores, I couldn’t help but notice this trend… the midriff shirt was every where!
Last year was the year of the butt and apparently 2014 is going to be the year of the stomach. Great. Right?
It seems that this trend is so big that people are stressing the hell out to get a flatter, more flattering stomach by attending core targeted classes, by waking up and doing sit-ups upon sit-ups, upon sit-ups.
I am not fashionista but I refuse to stress out trying to get a 6-pack for my shirt. That’s just weird. And let’s not forget that ab work WILL NOT give you a flat stomach!
I can only imagine that great info products that will be designed for our ab craze this year.
And finally… I received this infographic in my inbox this week and found it interesting.