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Re: Nutrition Labels Telling 1/2 the Story RE: Your Food’s Calories

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Just giving the original post a bump to get us back on topic.

Remember the raw foods diet? This may explain that ...

 

Why Most Food Labels are Wrong About Calories

 

WRITTEN BY

Richard Wrangham, Professor, Harvard University and Rachel Carmody, Visiting fellow, Harvard University

 

Your body digests the calories of processed foods very differently than raw, unprocessed foods.

 

Food labels seem to provide all the information a thoughtful consumer needs, so counting calories should be simple. But things get tricky because food labels tell only half the story.


A calorie is a measure of usable energy. Food labels say how many calories a food contains. But what they don’t say is that how many calories you actually get out of your food depends on how highly processed it is.


Processed food makes you fatter

Food-processing includes cooking, blending, and mashing, or using refined instead of unrefined flour. It can be done by the food industry before you buy, or in your home when you prepare a meal. Its effects can be big. If you eat your food raw, you will tend to lose weight. If you eat the same food cooked, you will tend to gain weight. Same calories, different outcome.

 


More processed foods are digested more completely

Animal experiments show that processing affects calorie gain whether the energy source is carbohydrate, protein, or lipid (fats and oils). In every case, more processed foods give an eater more energy.


Take carbohydrates, which provide more than half of the world’s calories. Their energy is often packaged in starch grains, dense packets of glucose that are digested mainly in your small intestine. If you eat a starchy food raw, up to half the starch grains pass through the small intestine entirely undigested. Your body gets two-thirds or less of the total calories available in the food. The rest might be used by bacteria in your colon, or might even be passed out whole.


Even among cooked foods, digestibility varies. Starch becomes more resistant to digestion when it is allowed to cool and sit after being cooked, because it crystallizes into structures that digestive enzymes cannot easily break down. So stale foods like day-old cooked spaghetti, or cold toast, will give you fewer calories than the same foods eaten piping hot, even though technically they contain the same amount of stored energy.

 

Taken from The Conversation. Read the entire article here: http://theconversation.com/why-most-food-labels-are-wrong-about-calories-35081 also seen here: https://qz.com/880694/nutrition-labels-are-technically-accurate-but-they-leave-out-crucial-informati...


 

"The key to success is to keep growing in all areas of life - mental, emotional, spiritual, as well as physical." Julius Erving
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Re: Nutrition Labels Telling 1/2 the Story RE: Your Food’s Calories

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@ASTRAEA Apologies for taking so long to respond to your comment. Ours was a crazy busy long weekend. Oh how my Monday to-do list grows after one of those weekends in which we treat the hacienda as a pit stop! Anyway… So I went ahead and moved the oil portion of this conversation over to a new thread, because we are really talking about an anti-inflammation diet here. Or at least that’s how I see it and thus where I took my answer.

 

Here’s that new thread: http://community.aarp.org/t5/Healthy-Living/Omega-6-Anti-inflammation-Diet-and-Lifestyle/m-p/1829350...

 

But I did want to say here that we prefer to eat raw avocados over processed avocado oil. Raw unprocessed avos are a great source of fiber. As your chart points out, that’s lost in the processing of oil. Also, I feel avocado oil’s flavor usually does not serve a Thai-style stir fry, whereas peanut oil adds an authentic flavor.

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Re: Nutrition Labels Telling 1/2 the Story RE: Your Food’s Calories

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For high heat oil, Avocado oil doesn't smoke, and it has significantly less saturated fat than peanut oil. Avocado oil also has less than 1/2 the amount of omega-6 fatty acid (which is inflammatory). Check out the "Fat & Fatty Acids" comparison: Avocado Oil vs Peanut Oil


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Re: Nutrition Labels Telling 1/2 the Story RE: Your Food’s Calories

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@ASTRAEA wrote:

@retiredtraveler - You might want to replace your canola oil with coconut oil.


Or peanut oil (does not smoke at high heat).

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Re: Nutrition Labels Telling 1/2 the Story RE: Your Food’s Calories

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@retiredtraveler - You might want to replace your canola oil with coconut oil.


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Re: Nutrition Labels Telling 1/2 the Story RE: Your Food’s Calories

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@retiredtraveler wrote:

"....Of course there are far greater worries about processed foods than calories....".

 

Well, it looks like you're defining processed as stuff from the store. Remember, as your article points out, 'processed' is also anyone cooking in some manner.

 

I got into stir frying, just about everything, a number of years ago. It appears that it is a healty way of eating 'processed' veggies. I use canola or olive oil, so more calories, but having those oils is also healthy and to me, better than simply boiling or steaming veggies (but up to the individual, of course).   


 


Right, the article does include all cooking as processing. And I do tend to think of that in terms of packaged, commercial processing. But of course home cooking, too, tends to reduce a food's fiber and nutrition, though not anywhere near as drastically as does the high heat of commercial processing.

 

As you point out, there are 'better' types of home processing. Maybe I should say 'less fiber destroying' manners of home cooking. Like you, I cook in methods that preserve as much nutrition as possible as often as possible (including stir frying and steaming --drizzle a wee bit of lemon juice over mixed steamed veggies to boost flavor). 

 

I think the data is interesting, but also think a truly raw diet is extreme in terms of how limiting it would be and in terms of food borne illness risk. (heat not only kills vitamins, it kills bacteria)

 

And then there is this: what works best for one person will not be optimal for another due to lifestyle, body chemistry and genetics. 

 

 

 

 

 

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Re: Nutrition Labels Telling 1/2 the Story RE: Your Food’s Calories

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"....Of course there are far greater worries about processed foods than calories....".

 

Well, it looks like you're defining processed as stuff from the store. Remember, as your article points out, 'processed' is also anyone cooking in some manner.

 

I got into stir frying, just about everything, a number of years ago. It appears that it is a healty way of eating 'processed' veggies. I use canola or olive oil, so more calories, but having those oils is also healthy and to me, better than simply boiling or steaming veggies (but up to the individual, of course).   


 


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Re: Nutrition Labels Telling 1/2 the Story RE: Your Food’s Calories

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I guess one could argue that eating processed foods can be a good thing if your food budget is small, as you'll realize a greater calorie for your buck ...

 

Of course there are far greater worries about processed foods than calories.

 

 

"The key to success is to keep growing in all areas of life - mental, emotional, spiritual, as well as physical." Julius Erving
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Nutrition Labels Telling 1/2 the Story RE: Your Food’s Calories

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Remember the raw foods diet? This may explain that ...

 

Why Most Food Labels are Wrong About Calories

 

WRITTEN BY

Richard Wrangham, Professor, Harvard University and Rachel Carmody, Visiting fellow, Harvard University

 

Your body digests the calories of processed foods very differently than raw, unprocessed foods.

 

Food labels seem to provide all the information a thoughtful consumer needs, so counting calories should be simple. But things get tricky because food labels tell only half the story.


A calorie is a measure of usable energy. Food labels say how many calories a food contains. But what they don’t say is that how many calories you actually get out of your food depends on how highly processed it is.


Processed food makes you fatter

Food-processing includes cooking, blending, and mashing, or using refined instead of unrefined flour. It can be done by the food industry before you buy, or in your home when you prepare a meal. Its effects can be big. If you eat your food raw, you will tend to lose weight. If you eat the same food cooked, you will tend to gain weight. Same calories, different outcome.

 


More processed foods are digested more completely

Animal experiments show that processing affects calorie gain whether the energy source is carbohydrate, protein, or lipid (fats and oils). In every case, more processed foods give an eater more energy.


Take carbohydrates, which provide more than half of the world’s calories. Their energy is often packaged in starch grains, dense packets of glucose that are digested mainly in your small intestine. If you eat a starchy food raw, up to half the starch grains pass through the small intestine entirely undigested. Your body gets two-thirds or less of the total calories available in the food. The rest might be used by bacteria in your colon, or might even be passed out whole.


Even among cooked foods, digestibility varies. Starch becomes more resistant to digestion when it is allowed to cool and sit after being cooked, because it crystallizes into structures that digestive enzymes cannot easily break down. So stale foods like day-old cooked spaghetti, or cold toast, will give you fewer calories than the same foods eaten piping hot, even though technically they contain the same amount of stored energy.

 

Taken from The Conversation. Read the entire article here: http://theconversation.com/why-most-food-labels-are-wrong-about-calories-35081 also seen here: https://qz.com/880694/nutrition-labels-are-technically-accurate-but-they-leave-out-crucial-informati...

"The key to success is to keep growing in all areas of life - mental, emotional, spiritual, as well as physical." Julius Erving
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