Friday, September 23, 2011

Food Facts Friday: Scweddy Balls & FAT

So, last night, I went to my children's Back to School night!
Chaos in the hallways. Be sympathetic towards lost parents (aka., Me).

I am still in awe that I have two children in high school! I kept saying to myself, "Only three more 'Back to School' years left!" Wow...Just can't get that through my head.

Anyway, when I got home, my ninth grader couldn't wait to show me a Fox News report on Ben & Jerry's newest flavor:

He was cracking up, "Mom we gotta get this ice cream!"
He knows I love Alec Baldwin, 30Rock and of course, SNL, but I couldn't let those loves transfer to accepting and purchasing what Ben & Jerry's offers - so... I gave him my "usual eye rolling routine".

Then, I read the article on B&J's Schweddy Balls. With all respect to One Million Moms, I can see their point - they don't want there kids yelling out in aisle 13, "Hey Mom, can we have some Schweddy Balls, PLEEEZ?"
Why aren't One Million Moms yelling out, "Hey B&J's, stop promoting 'homemade' ice-cream with 10 grams of saturated fat!"

I am not kidding - this stuff is scary:

Holy Cow. Unilever, the company which owns Ben & Jerry's, (Yeah, I know, my bubble was burst too when I realized those two nice guys from Vermont sold their homemade ice cream business to a huge conglomerate), states that they are in life with us - as our "Life Partners" - touching our lives in so many ways....

Look, its in writing, Unilever cares for our well-being! It must be true...right? They are in our lives - for better... and for worse...

First, the better: B&J's Shweddy balls is sweet vanilla ice cream, with a hint of rum and fudge - this ice-cream helps Unilever keep their goal to promote Holiday Traditions and Fair Trade (ehem, Greenwashing).

And second, the worse: B&J's Shweddy Balls is full of 10 grams of saturated fat.

The AHA (American Health Association) recommends that we limit our saturated fat to less than 7% total daily calories.

Let's face it peeps, Heart Disease is the #1 cause of death in the USA. So, I am comfortable using The AHA's recommendation to make saturated fat 7% or less of of our daily calories.

  Only 1/2 cup of B&J's Shweddy Balls ice-cream 
67% (10grams/15grams) of your DAILY saturated fat allowance

If you eat the entire container (3&1/2 servings) that's 30 grams of saturated fat!
~C'mon, fess up, who hasn't been inclined to do that?~

So, are saturated fats that bad? 

Saturated fat is the stuff that raises your blood cholesterol levels, which increases your risk of heart disease  - the #1 killer in the USA!

What's a person to do? Stop eating fat? I'm not a sadist, here - of course not - but instead of buying and eating saturated fats, try some healthier fats:

Monounsaturated fats:
  • Replace saturated fats with monounsaturated fats, which can help reduce your cholesterol.
  • They are loaded with Vitamin E, a vitamin which many Americans are low in and provides antioxidant benefits (helps protect cells from free radicals that can lead to cancer).
  • Found in olive oil, peanut butter and avocados.
Polyunsaturated Fats:
  • Replace saturated fats, which can help reduce your cholesterol.
  • Composed of essential fats, such as Omega-6 and Omega-3, which are crucial (note to One Million Moms) in brain function and normal growth and development of the body.
  • Found in fish, such as salmon, trout and mackerel and nuts, such as walnuts and sunflower seeds.
Remember fat is fat, so even the good stuff - the monounsaturated and the polyunsaturated fats - should be used sparingly!

If you want to find out more on Fats and Oils, The American Heart Association has an excellent-user friendly website. If you scroll your cursor to the tab in the upper right, labeled "Fats & Oils", a menu will drop down - this menu provides great links to tons of additional information.

Buon Apetito and
Train Smart Today!

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