Wednesday, February 3, 2010 them.

I like to think of myself as a pragmatist. I don't make hard and fast rules about food because I think it'll just set myself up for failure or contradiction. For example, remember my craving for nachos? Well, I typically don't buy processed food and I typically don't "allow" chips in the house because I end up eating the bag between two breaths but I figured it's better that I make the nachos than to try to find some semblance of the stuff in town. Anyway, the point I'm *trying* to make here is that food should be food and people should try to eat what, to the best of their knowledge, they believe to be healthy, wholesome, and in moderation. Sounds pragmatic to me.

However, upon closer inspection, food is not always food as we think of it. The closer we look, the more complicated it gets. Me--I like simple...kinda explains why I live out in the middle of nowhere. But to prove my point, take a look at this can of tuna:

For most people, a can of tuna should be made up of what else but tuna, right? Sure, you can have a can of tuna packed in water or packed in oil so therefore the list of ingredients would simply be tuna and water/oil. Granted, sometimes salt might be added as a form of preservative. I can accept that. But read the label on this ordinary can of tuna.
Solid White Tuna *check*
Water *check*
Vegetable broth *che...wha?*
(contains soy) *HUH?*
Salt *um,okay*
Pyrophosphate *pyro-what?*

Now, I'm not singling out this company and infact, this wasn't the except to the rule, but the rule itself. It took me and Secret Agent Man (okay, he was just being patient and humoring me)10-15 minutes to find a can of tuna with JUST tuna and water. The point being that maybe people should pay attention to labels more often. I just don't know why vegetable broth or soy should be in a can of tuna. They aren't bad things, per se (although soy is debatable), just weird. Maybe that's just me.

Did you know some chicken broths and plain old canned diced tomatos have monosodiumglutamate (MSG)? Why would you need MSG in diced tomatoes? Just plain weird to me. Don't get me wrong, I love MSG because it makes things taste so intensely good but I think reducing the amount of processed stuff could do me no harm. Judging from these "case studies" I'm pretty sure I'm getting my fill of MSG without even knowing it.

I just started to read labels a little closer (well, reading things other than the total calories and fiber grams) and I found that the most ordinary foods had extraordinary ingredients. It's actually quite amusing to a nerd like me but it does make you wonder what else you've been eating without knowing it.


No comments:

Post a Comment