I was already feeling guilty this weekend. Guilty for throwing away some Valentine’s candy the kiddos had been given, guilty for not feeling comfortable to ask that the kiddos not be given candy, and guilty for only letting them have the little candy they had.
On NPR this morning, they mentioned that more people, world-wide, are eating ‘fast food’ and spending more at the grocery stores to save money they would normally spend at expensive restaurants. It’s good that we’re watching our spending, trying to make wiser choices. But are they really wiser?
A couple months ago, the builder and the dancer came down with a strange virus and a terrible rash (all over their bodies). Immediately, we went to the kinesiologist. He first concluded that there was indeed, a virus present, but that there was something else bothering the kiddos. As we checked for typical food allergies, we were coming up short. The builder has had problems with corn in the past, so I asked him to check corn, and various forms of corn. Finally we hit the jack-pot: corn syrup.
How I loathe corn syrup. For a while I felt compelled to make a difference. We don’t have corn syrup in our home. There is a very small amount of processed food in our home (your main source of corn syrup). But the kiddos had been getting it outside of our home. A little here and a little there. So we began sending a snack for the kiddos to nursery (at church), and informed the nursery leader.
Fortunately, the builder has moved on to Primary, but that means I need to take the initiative and tell his new teacher, for she is so good to give her class snacks, and the builder is always good to share with his sister. Over time, I have become complacent. Figuring if I don’t allow it in our home, that they will be okay if they receive corn syrup from time to time outside our home.
Then I read an article at Mercola.com, about High Fructose Corn Syrup, or HFCS. A recent study found that nearly half of the HFCS samples contained mercury. And that out of 55 popular beverages, almost a third contained mercury (that is, those with HFCS as the first or second ingredient).
This set out a major red flag for me! I had no idea. And seriously, what next? Why am I concerned? Known side-affects of mercury consumption include…
In pregnant women:
- mental retardation
- cerebral palsy
In the nervous system:
- personality changes, irritability
“To make matters worse, mercury bonds very firmly to structures in your CNS. Unless actively removed, it has an extremely long half-life of somewhere between 15 and 30 years in the CNS! What this means is that consuming mercury-contaminated HFCS is probably cumulative, with the damage adding up over time.”
Why have we avoided HFCS in the past? It’s quick metabolism is known to cause:
- metabolic syndrome
- liver disease
- an over abundance of bad cholesterol
Yes, I began this post with guilt. But I would feel more guilty if I did not pass along this information. I am very frustrated with what our society considers natural or healthy food sources. Most of the items sold in grocery stores should not be considered nourishing for our bodies. Unfortunately, it is way too much for the FDA to handle all that is entering our food source. I am recommittingto being more proactive on the fight against HFCS. Yes, I will be asking outside kiddo food sources to not give them processed food and candy. I hope I can do it in a way that people will not be offended.
If you want to do more research on HFCS and see the sources from the article:
Want to know some of the food sources tested?
What are you doing to make more healthy choices for yourself and/or your family? How have you successfully asked others not to give your children certain things?
p.s. Please don’t tell the kiddos I threw away their candy! And a special thanks to my girls at playgroup, who are always trying to offer/bring healthy snacks!