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Next Diet Trend J.E.R.F. – Bariatric Edition

I follow all the trends because I want to know what is being advertised as the newest, latest, and greatest diet fad out there. Here are some of the trends that have taken hold of our world over the past few years:
We’ve got …. 
Carnivore …. Just to name a few…
I don’t think that we need to bash any of these dietary concepts. We are all biochemical individuals and what works for one person doesn’t necessarily work for us all. Some of us don’t want to eat meat (vegans) while others don’t want to eat anything besides meat (carnivore diet). Who’s to say that one is right and one is wrong?
AND … Do you know what irritates me? Why do “you” (not you but that person pointing their finger), care so darn much about how or what I eat? People get so caught up and passionate about their diet that they are willing to get aggressive with others who do not share their same concepts and opinions.
You Do You Boo.
What if it hurts my stomach to eat meat? Does that mean that I should just suck it up and eat meat anyways? Of course not. My body is telling me that it’s not so good for me and I would listen to those signs.
What if I drink milk and my stomach gets very sick? Should I just drink it anyway? Of course not. I may be lactose intolerant and that would mean that I need to stay away from most dairy products.
What if I have high blood sugars? That would mean that I should seriously consider staying away from the carbohydrates because those are the foods that will increase blood sugars and insulin levels BUT not EVERYBODY has issues with blood sugars.
We all need to do what is best for us. We need to listen to our bodies and we need to eat sensibly. 
Do you know what the new food fad is? I do and I am going to tell you. I like this new food fad.
J.E.R.F – Just Eat Real Food
So what does “real food” mean? Well has it been processed in a plant? Or does it come from a plant? 
Real food is the closest to nature that we can find. And you know what? Real food can be used in ANY of the diet treads. Watch this.
We can be PALEO and Eat Real Food.
We can be VEGAN and Eat Real Food.
We can be KETO and Eat Real Food.
We can be PLANT-BASED and Eat Real Food.
We can be CARNIVORE and Eat Real Food.
This new trend works with ALL the dietary trends out there.
So what is NOT real food? Anything that has been processed and packaged in a lab or factory or plant is not real food. 
Take a potato. That is real food. Now I take that potato and I cut it. I fry it. I add all sorts of chemicals to it. I package it and I sell it to you. That’s not a potato any longer. That is a portion of processed food.
Take almonds. Now grind those almonds to make some almond flour. So far, so good. Now to that flour, add all sorts of sugars and chocolate and flavorings emulsifiers, oils, etc. etc. Some may call it a “healthy granola bar” but I call it a packaged processed food. It is no longer healthy almonds or almond flour. It has been converted into something made in a food processing plant.
Let’s take Mac and Cheese in a box. Do you see Mac and cheese growing in the fields? Of course not. This is a portion of processed food.
What about donuts? Ever seen a donut tree? I rest my case.
What about cookies? If I make cookies at home with coconut flour, a dash of stevia, vanilla, egg, coconut oil, and a bit of cocoa, I don’t consider this a processed food. This is a dessert made out of whole foods. If I purchase this same concoction in the supermarket and the label lists a whole bunch of things which I don’t know what it is or where it comes from, then it is processed food. 
Food manufacturers need to add a lot of things to their products to make them “shelf-stable”. They also add things to their products for “mouth feel” and “taste”. We don’t want to be consuming these things.
If we stick to the foods which are close to nature, we will gain the biggest benefits. We need to stop feeding ourselves the pre-packaged foods which clearly state on the labels, “high in protein”, “high in fiber”, “low in carbohydrates”, etc. If they need to state things on the labels, then clearly we need to learn to flip the label over and dig in even deeper.
Let’s look at “mayonnaise made with avocado oil”. This always disappoints me. Do you know why the label states this? It’s because the mayonnaise company is trying to persuade me that they have a healthier option in mayo for me. The reason why mayo gets a “bad rap” is that one of the main ingredients is “canola oil”. Canola oil is one of the “baddies” when it comes to oils. It is highly inflammatory. Smart consumers have figured this out and are searching for healthier options. Go grab your mayo from your fridge, flip it over and see what the first ingredient is – it’s CANOLA OIL.
Now, the food giants have made this new(ish) mayo with avocado oil which is extremely good for us BUT they have still kept canola oil as the first ingredient. YUP, they’ve just taken their regular recipe and added a bit of avocado oil so that they can put on the front label “made with avocado oil”. They are not lying … it’s true BUT the canola is still there as the first ingredient. This irritates me.
It also irritates me when I purchase a “cauliflower pizza crust” and sure, it has some cauliflower in it BUT the carbohydrate count is not lower because they have 4 different flours in the crust which are not healthy at all. I feel lied to and I feel cheated and they sell it to me at 10 times the price of the regular pizza crust. I should have just flipped the label over and read the ingredients.
Let’s promise ourselves to be smarter consumers and 1/ buy more real food and 2/ learn to read those labels when we do buy something processed. 
I know that my clients try their best to make healthy decisions and I want to empower them to make the best decisions for their family and their health. Keep up the awesome work folks. You are worth it!!
Sheri Burke
Your RHN – Bariatric Nutritionist/ Surgery Coordinator

About the Author: Sheri Burke is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and Bariatric Surgery Coordinator at International Patient Facilitators in Tijuana and Cancun, Mexico. She has worked with bariatric surgery clients for over 10 years and especially enjoys providing nutritional guidance to pre and post bariatric clients.  In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two teens and cooking up a nutritional storm in the kitchen.

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