Inspiration from Meghan

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Ice cream, you scream, this will make us all scream!


It’s guess the “food” time!! Here’s a snippet from a long list of ingredients… You may need your encyclopedia for this one:

nonfat milk, corn syrup, water, high fructose corn syrup, sweetened condensed whole milk, cocoa processed with alkali, modified corn starch, hydrogenated coconut oil, salt, potassium sorbate and propyl paraben – as preservatives, carrageenan, propylene glycol alginate, natural and artificial vanilla flavor, soy lecithin), sugar, brownies (sugar, wheat flour, cocoa processed with alkali, water, eggs, egg whites, dried apple powder, nonfat dry milk, high fructose corn syrup, corn starch, vanilla extract, soybean oil, salt), cream, corn syrup, macadamia brittle [sugar, macadamia nuts, corn syrup, butter (cream, salt), coconut oil, molasses, soy lecithin, salt, sodium bicarbonate], cocoa powder and chocolate liquor processed with alkali, stabilizer (modified whey, maltodextrin, microcrystalline cellulose, mono and diglycerides, cellulose gum, locust bean gum, carrageenan), whey powder, brown color (blue 1, red 40, yellow 5), vitamin a palmitate

This is something being marketed to us as “a healthy choice”.

How can this be?

It’s a frozen yogurt called “Aloha Brownie Madness” with only 150 calories per 125 ml serving. Delish no?

Baskin Robbins contacted me wanting to offer a ‘desk side’ tasting of this new product, which they deem to be a “better” choice. Their selection offers a variety of options that are “dairy-free”, “fat-free”, “no-sugar-added”, and “calorie-reduced”.

Baskin Robbins hoped that I would try their new products and do a review on them.  These PR companies ought to do better research, before sending out crappola like this.

You know me well enough to predict how I responded to this offer. I said no to the product because waste is waste and asked simply for the full ingredient list.

This is what I refer to as HealthWashing– the practice of a company labelling something as a healthy choice when really it is a toxic pile of poop. Though a pile of poop might be healthier. I just grossed myself out.

Why on earth does a calorie count matter when what is needed to produce that low calorie count is toxic chemical waste? It’s safe to say that we should be weary of foods advertised on television. If we followed what TV told us to do, I think we’d have nine cars, 16 credit cards, be horribly overweight, have an overload of toxins in our body from all the perfumes, hair dyes and cosmetics, yearn to be thin as a rail and be in diapers (why do so many meds have loss of bladder control as a side effect?). Wait… we kind of are!

Unfortunately, with so much media being thrown at us, we fail to see  the importance of ingredient quality. Is “propylene glycol alginate” even a food? It came from food, kelp actually, but as the emulsifier in this ice cream, I’m not sure you’d be eating that on its own. Most of this ingredient list sounds like something used to fuel airplanes.

Think about this for a second. One food I love to its and bits is the coconut. I use coconut oil abundantly. The stuff I use is virgin cold-pressed. What this yogurt treat is using, hydrogenated coconut oil, is a beat-up version that the coconut goddesses would not appreciate. When an oil is partially hydrogenated it means that after it is first extracted, it is processed further in order to increase its melting point. In this process, some fats are also converted into trans fatty acids, which can actually be deadly.

My advice? If you want ice cream, eat the real thing. Enjoy it, love it. It’s a treat meant to be savoured. Don’t pretend like it’s a health food. If you want frozen yogurt, than freeze your yogurt.

And if you are a store bought kind of gal, I heart Yogalicious Kefir Ice Cream and whether you swing the veggie/vegan way or not, Luna and Larry’s Coconut Bliss is decadently delightfully

20 responses to “Ice cream, you scream, this will make us all scream!”

  1. Dani @ Body By Nature says:

    Hands down worst healthwashing is Kraft Dinner Smart – the noodles are said to be made with cauliflower and a 50g serving is equivalent to 1/2 serving of boiled cauliflower. Yuck.

  2. Andie says:

    Luna and Larry’s Coconut Bliss is simply awesome. I only keep that and maybe, sometimes, when it’s really necessary, some real ice cream with simple ingredients.

  3. Jen says:

    To Dani: Really? I haven’t seen this stuff but I don’t go down the aisles much in the grocery store. I would think that there is a lot of processing going on to make cauliflower into a noodle. Why not just eat cauliflower?

  4. Lazarus says:

    I LOVE making my own ice cream with full fat coconut milk as a base!!! It’s delish & nutrish and I can put what ever I want in it like cacao nibs or nuts.

    I agree with you…. too much health washing! It’s a cop-out!

  5. Stephanie says:

    Jelly Belly jelly beans with “superfoods.” Really, they sell this.

  6. Sondi says:

    One product that really drives me nuts is ‘Weight Control Oatmeal’. Um, oatmeal is naturally healthy, low in fat and cholesterol, and high in fibre. We don’t need special oatmeal to lose weight, especially when ‘weight control oatmeal’ has a whole bunch of extra crap and preservatives in it!

  7. Julia says:

    Another thing I’ve been noticing is “natural companies” just explaining what the scary word ingredients are doing or are derived from, so they think it’s still ok to include as long as we know what the toxin does…take Tom’s Toothpaste (the “most natural” one you can find in a drugstore-if I’m wrong please please tell me where in the world I can find a better one!)

    Ingredients list includes:
    Sodium lauryl sulfate, Purpose=Dispersant, Source=derived from coconut and/or palm kernel oil
    Xylitol, Purpose=Flavor, Source=Birch trees or corn

    My confusion…even main stream cheaper products like shampoos go out of their way to say “we don’t contain sulfates!” so why is it ok for us to ingest toothpaste with this stuff, because it’s from a more “natural company”?? And xylitol…yuck, why the need for sweetener in a toothpaste?

  8. Melissa says:

    There is a lot of healthwashing nowadays because some people are starting to question these big companies and their ingredients. Yet, with their “all natural” labels there still are hidden bad guys in the foods and products these big companies are producing. Labels and claims really need to be a concern with governments more than they are.

  9. Ami says:

    My favorite is the new commercials and ads companies like McDonald’s and KFC now have out, trying to spin their food as healthy. Just because you use “eggs you could buy at the grocery store” or “canadian chicken” doesn’t make it good for you. Plus, what kind of eggs were we supposed to think they were using…. snake eggs?

  10. Liz says:

    Meghan, I had a request for a post on your blog, if you find the time. Out here on the west coast there is a lot of talk about the possibility of radiation from Japan’s nuclear tragedy heading our way. I’d love to hear your thoughts on some natural ways to help protect ourselves from the risks. Thanks for your wonderful blog! I’d love to be able to go to your workshops someday, but alas, I’m too far. I’m just happy I can still benefit from your knowledge, experience, and yummy deliciousness! Thanks for all you do!

  11. Andrea says:

    I went to one of their in-store tastings coordinated by their PR company and enjoyed the ice cream for what it was: Junk food and low-quality ice cream containing filler rather than high quality ice cream with fewer ingredients. I subsequently wrote a blog post calling them out on “Healthwashing” – though I didn’t use that word) while encouraging people to eat ice cream if they want to eat ice cream, once in awhile, without being deluded into thinking it’s healthy. I took the angle of “nostalgia” because to me, the brand is largely nostalgia.

    During the tasting I drew the line at the “Blue Raspberry” flavour. My mind could not temporarily suspend belief enough for that one. I do occasionally eat ice cream from BR and other stores and do so without guilt or apology because it tastes good, it makes me feel good emotionally and I consciously pick my poisons (not just a metaphor) with awareness of the potential consequences.

    Despite trying to keep it to myself I made some snarky remarks about the campaign during the tasting and clearly pissed off one taster with one of my skepticism. I liked the PR reps but don’t support the campaign. The whole “BRight Choices” concept is an insult to intelligence while grasping for off-season marketing. I’m so surprised that they reached out to you.

    • Meghan Telpner says:

      The thing is too- it’s not just bad stuff for our bodies- but all the chemical processing is bad for the planet too- not to mention all the disposables that come with eating there too.

      • Andrea T. says:

        (And have I mentioned that I miss the function on your blog that gives the option to subscribe to comments? I have to remember to check back.)

  12. Stephanie says:

    That ingredient list is just gross! I’ve been struggling for the past couple of years to avoid dairy completely (though I don’t drink it, I realize now I was getting plenty of it as it hides in most products with ingredient lists). But I just found out I’m allergic to it… just the kick in the butt I needed to stay away from it. And you know what? I’m ok with that :)

  13. Kiley @ Coconut Bliss says:

    I think HealthWashing just became my new favorite word! Of course something so dead on would come from awesome ladies like you & Lisa.

    Thanks for the decadently delightful Coconut Bliss shout out, I really appreciate it!

  14. Mel says:

    I think Weight Watchers and their point system is a huge example of healthwashing. They promote low fat, no fat options as being healthy.

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