Acorn to Tree Kitchen Series

Kitchen Series with Argavan Nilforoush – How Parents Should Read Food Labels for Healthy Choices

This comprehensive article provides parents with essential information on how to effectively read food labels to make healthier choices for their children. It covers key aspects such as understanding nutrition facts, ingredient lists, hidden sugars, and allergens. The article empowers parents with the knowledge to identify and avoid unhealthy ingredients, enabling them to prioritize their child’s well-being through informed food choices.

Full Episode Transcript:

Patrice Badami 0:02

Hi, this is Patrice Badami, with Acorn to Tree in the Kitchen,  with Argavan Nilforoush. She’s from baby steps nutrition, which she created. She’s a mompreneur and a pediatric dietitian. She incorporates all aspects of integrated care into her website and her care model. So good morning, Oregon. How you feeling today? How you doing?


Argavan Nilforoush:

Good morning. I’m actually this is fine, because I switched my location from my usual formal structured office, which is basically a desk in my room, to where I like to sit and casually hang out, because I know we’re talking about snacks and food labels. So it’s pretty much my space when I want to chill and snack. 


Patrice Badami:

Yeah, so I mean, that’s where I have most of my conversations is in the kitchen with friends of mine. So I thought, let’s do that. Let’s just have a discussion. Let’s open up the board, if you will, to talking about food labels, we’re going to discuss food labels, what you need to know what’s on there, that’s confusion, you know, confusing at times. And we’re each going to have a little something I have lemon water, hot lemon water, with a little bit of honey. And then I have a granola bar whole food that has just peanuts and oats in it pretty much. So what are you having as a snack today, just to share with the listeners and viewers. 


Argavan Nilforoush:

Yes, I like my morning coffee. But I try not to have more than one cup earlier in the morning. So later in the day, just because with caffeine and I like to hydrate in other ways. So I actually have my I love my cup called cup of happy. Today, I like to switch up the herbal tea. So I’ll have a green tea if I want something with a little more antioxidant. But today, I’m just having a lavender mint tea. I love this brand. Again, we can talk about what to look for. But I always have my cup of tea. And then my go to snack is always going to be a fruit and vegetable. And then I always have my homemade trail mix. So I like my nights and seeds, pumpkin seeds. 


Argavan Nilforoush 2:03 I have walnuts, I have almonds. And this is pretty much what I snack on on a daily basis, I may switch up the fruit and vegetable. But I always have nuts and seeds with me. That’s what I do too. And I recently, I started having walnuts. And I noticed when I add the walnuts to my Greek yogurt and fruit, I’m actually fuller longer, I’ll even go past the time I normally would eat lunch. And then I’m able to get to that second meal and eat reasonably without getting that hunger pain. 


Patrice Badami:

So we’re going to talk about food labels, because nowadays everyone is really trying to be a little more conscious of what they’re eating. And myself, I do get confused with certain aspects of labels. And we’ll discuss that in a minute. But what are some important things about labels that families need to be aware of?


Argavan Nilforoush:

 Okay, first, I want to acknowledge how complicated it is out there. I mean, I’m myself as a professional, always listening to other professionals and seeing how other sources of knowledge are being put out there. And sometimes it is so complicated and overwhelm of information that I get that people are still asking, but what do I need to be looking for, right? Because there’s so much out there. And so today, I really want to make it as simple as possible. Because yes, knowledge is power. But I also want people to walk away going, Okay, I think I got this, I think I know what to look for rather than cool. That was a lot of information that I don’t know what to do. And so before I begin, I want to first talk about the food labels were updated in 2016, with the new guidelines, and almost all the products that you’ll see on their shelves now as of January of 2021 have been updated. So just to kind of show you the difference, they used to look like this. Okay, and now they look like this. So as you can see some of the font is bigger. Some things have been rearranged because they realized that this actually is more helpful for consumers because you could see the calories right there at the top, you could see the serving sizes. And then the vitamins and minerals that were not as important like vitamin A and D have now been removed. And things like vitamin D, which a lot of Americans are deficient and are now shown right there on the label. And then at the bottom, you could see some percentages, which we’ll talk about. And then there will always be the allergen information because with wheat, dairy soy, you know, we want that information right at the top. So those are the kind of the main changes that a lot of people will see. 


Patrice Badami:

Very interesting. Yes, and in terms of what to look for. So I’m going to grab my I actually bought two products to show you. I’m not associated with any of these products, but I just wanted to show you so.


Argavan Nilforoush 4:46


 You know when we look at the fine of the food label, right, it looks fancy. There are a lot of claims it’s very confusing. Well, how do I know what to pick? Right? There are a gazillion items on the shelf when we go shopping.


 Argavan Nilforoush 4:59 


What people should keep in mind is food marketing is huge. And food marketers, food companies are in it to make money, and sadly at the expense of our health. And this is where consumers really need to understand food labels. I even teach it to kids. Because I think it’s an essential life skill, there is no way we can get around right not eating packaged foods, I mean, look, I have a packaged food that seemingly seems healthy in my own pantry. So I’m never going to say to someone avoided at all costs. But because we do eat it, we also want to know, what they say we’re getting is actually what we’re getting. And this is where they too often don’t line up. So when we’re looking at a food package, go ahead and turn it over, I almost don’t care what’s on the front, right, because it’s competition on the shelf, which looks brighter, prettier, you know, it’s got the health claims, right. And we know these health claims are not backed by science, unfortunately. And also, there haven’t been long-term studies done on them. So we want to get away from looking at it based on the front. Go ahead and turn it right over. Before even this food label, I like to look at the ingredients list. Because the ingredients list is where the transparency happens. Everything that’s in the fruit is going to be in the ingredients list. Now some ingredients list are very long, right? Which right away for me is a red flag, right? Like why does the bagel need to have 30 ingredients? So that’s a red flag in itself. The ingredients list is listed according to wait, the highest way that the beginning and the lowest way that the end. So what’s interesting is you might pick up something and it’ll say lentil. But where is lentil lifted? In the first five ingredients? It’s not, you’ll see potato, you’ll see other ingredients, lentil maybe the eighth or ninth ingredient. So that food is actually not going to be high and lentil but they can write lentil chips, because it’s one of the ingredients that’s listed. That’s interesting.


 Patrice Badami 6:56


 I tried some lentil chips, and then my son took it away. He said it. He also said besides the fact that has too many ingredients, you also said the sodium which we’ll talk about shortly, I’m sure. 


Argavan Nilforoush 7:07

 Yes. So first and foremost ingredients list. If it had too many things, probably not the best option. If you see the first five or six ingredients, like it lists sugar preservatives, you know, some of the things that you can’t pronounce, I would say not a best choice best to put it down and look for something else. So I’d love to look at the ingredients. If you see sugar, again that you would think like pasta sauce, why does it need to have sugar, put that down, there are so many other products that, for example, pasta sauce, or chips or crackers that don’t contain sugar. Those will be about our options. But again, this is why it’s important that look at your table. Because you’d be surprised what they put in a in a product that doesn’t belong there. Another thing is natural flavors. Unfortunately, companies have gotten really smart with using the word natural and organic. 


Patrice Badami 8:00

I wanted to ask you about that. I was about to ask you.  


Argavan Nilforoush 8:03


 Yes. So a lot of consumers think that they’re being healthy. And what happens is it justifies them eating more of that product, and buying it more often. But it’s not necessarily healthy. So again, unfortunately, with natural flavors, it may have started out in nature. But it certainly doesn’t end natural. So it’s been somehow processed in a lab, for example, you can take a strawberry, you can do all kinds of stuff to it. And it could be a form of strawberry in a product, and all they have to do is less natural. But you don’t know what’s happened to that product from when it was taken from nature to win it ended up in your mouth. So so be wary of those claims. 


Patrice Badami 8:43 


Right. So, so let’s I understand you’re saying so it could be derived from a strawberry. It could be, you know, it could have originally been a strawberry but they extracted perhaps a little bit of juice, added some chemicals, and they can still say natural. That’s something they know.


Argavan Nilforoush 9:00


 Yeah. And that’s it hasn’t been completely regulated yet. So natural flavors can mean you’re getting hundreds of other ingredients from that particular ingredient that it doesn’t have to be listed. So again, because it says organic because it does natural, doesn’t mean it’s healthy, it might be a better option. But people tend to overconsume on those products and then not feel great and wonder why and that’s why there are a lot of other dis undisclosed ingredients, unfortunately. 


Patrice Badami 9:31


 Right and what I was gonna say is the other thing I remember when I was a child, my friend’s mom said if within the first five ingredients of a cereal, if it says sugar that was not something they were gonna they were gonna purchase. She was a nurse too. But what I was gonna say is we were just discussing I was about to ask you about natural means what is organic mean? People might not know Believe it or not. So we need to discuss what does organic mean as a compared to something that’s not legal Organic. What does that mean? 


Argavan Nilforoush 10:03


 So with organic, I do recommend as much as possible. I know a lot of people are on a budget when it comes to fruits and vegetables, there’s something called the clean 15 and the Dirty Dozen. So if you are on a budget, you can go on the Environmental Working Group, and look at the list of Dirty Dozen, which are the top 12 most highly pesticide crops and vegetables. And those are the ones you want to avoid. And there’s a clean 50. So you can focus on the top list of 15 items that you don’t necessarily need to purchase organic. But it is important because if you think about for example, when you eat an apple, most likely you’re going to eat the apple with the skin. And if that’s something that has a lot of pesticide, or other chemicals, then you’re going to be ingesting that as well. Same thing with strawberries, right? It has to do with concentration. But for something like a banana because you peel it, right, that’s something that you don’t necessarily need to eat organic. So I like to look at it as are you going to eat the entire fruit or vegetable, right, and that goes into the vegetables that you use for snacking and cooking. If you’re consuming the whole thing, it’s better to opt for as much as possible, the non GMO organic.

Patrice Badami 11:15

 Right, and that that information that you just mentioned, we’ll have that in the show notes, I’d like to have that available that link so people can go and print it out, keep it in their kitchen and check it you know, when they’re about to go grocery shopping, I think that’s a great idea to have that. So you know, what I want to ask you is one of my questions is, when you look at a package, what are considered benign preservatives, and what are considered toxic preservatives that we should avoid?


 Argavan Nilforoush 11:45

 Yeah. And then first and foremost are dyes, the artificial dice, the red 40, the blue, the yellow, the green, if you see that anywhere on the list, that’s something we can live without I know sometimes it’s when children, for example, are outside of the home, there’s access. And so that’s where parents need to sort of make a decision based on the child’s age, how much autonomy and independence, we want to give our children and again, this is knowledge is power, right? So the whole family is learning about these foods. So when I see artificial dyes, that’s the first thing that I go, Oh, my goodness, this is something that we need to avoid. I’ll give an example I was at the store the other day, I wanted a simple fruit tart, I had a family member visiting. So I thought I’m going to ask the store for the label. And believe it or not in a fruit tart that they actually add the dyes back to the fruit to make them bright and bold and beautiful. Right. And so had I not looked at the label, I would have thought you just arranged some fruit with custard on on a bed. Graham crackers, but that was not the case. So this is again, where you want to look at the label artificial dyes is number one, there’s something called tbh hue, that has been linked to a lot of problems with people and what happens with a lot of these additives. And, you know, especially unprocessed, the ultra processed and we’ll talk about the difference between Ultra processed and processed are when they add these foods, these chemicals to foods, our body will react because it thinks well this is something I don’t know about this is something that’s unknown. So it actually increases our cravings for those foods more. So you’ve heard of a slogan for like a potato chip that you can eat just 50 or 100 There’s a reason why it sort of stimulates the brain to go it’s devoid of nutrients. So I’m going to eat more of that food so I can fill up on those nutrients. And of course, that’s never going to be the case. So you end up eating a bag of potato chips rather than a few, you know, pieces on a router. Yeah, and getting smart.


 Patrice Badami 13:46

 Yeah, so it’s basically the there’s what’s interesting about that is from information that I’ve researched concerning, you know, giant sodas that there’s your body is tasting with your with your tastebuds sugar, so your body releases all this insulin. So then later that evening, if you haven’t taken in a certain amount of actual sugar, actual cards to counteract the insulin, what ends up happening is whether you realize it or not later at night, you’re going to be slamming like bread, or a piece of cake or cookies because your body is telling you I need to get rid of this insulin so you need to take in. So when you’re drinking the diet soda or the diet product, it for the moment it seems to satiate you, but what’s happening inside your body is the is your body’s releasing what it thinks it needs to release. And in order to move forward, it will you’ll end up eating carbs that night. So it’s not it’s actually something that I did some research on for a family member I wanted to find out. Why is it that she drinks this diet soda all day. And then at night I see her having like four pieces of toast. And that’s why so you have to be really careful with the diet products. Sometimes it makes sense to have maybe a smaller amount of Something you want every once in a while that has sugar in it and then move on. You know, that’s something I realized when it comes to the sweeteners. So that’s another thing I wanted to ask you about. So we talked about it on the packaging, you see the guys immediately, you know, take take a step back, think, is that something you really want to ingest? Other things that you can also know is this this, you said TB HQ, is that actually listed in that way? When you look at the products TB HQ, for is there long, okay. So that’s, that’s something you need to avoid as well. Anything that’ll make your body do something in response to it, that’s something is MSG is another one. That’s that not only will it possibly cause you to continue eating that product. It also can cause neurological issues such as headaches, and digestive issues. And you remember what happened with olestra years ago, unless there was something that was having a dietary, you know, digestive response. Yeah, so 


Argavan Nilforoush 16:00


 You know, of Portreath. With that some kids, some adults are very sensitive. So for example, if you have a kid with ADHD, or some neurological challenges, one child may seem okay when they eat a bag of say, jelly beans. But if your child is already overly sensitive, and they happen to have a few, that might really fill up their bucket and cause it to overflow. So this is, again, where you have to understand your child, there may be things like guidelines, but if you’re really struggling to this is where it’s best to work with a healthcare professional. Because every child is different, every adult is different. So we’re talking about general guidelines here, but it might be very specific for each person.


 Patrice Badami 16:40


 And when you see a product that’s low in salt, or in the low in sugar, what they’re gonna do in those products is they’re gonna compensate for flavor, and do other things. So let’s talk about low sugar. Let’s talk about low sugar items that what your experiences with that what happens? 


Argavan Nilforoush 16:58 


Yeah, so if you see low sugar, or sugar free, again, there’s your red flag, right. So we have macronutrients which are carbohydrates, protein, and fat. So if you take one of them away carbohydrate being part of the carb, or sugar being part of the carbohydrate category, they’re going to have to increase with something else. So in the term of sugar, right, because human beings are designed to crave sugar are designed to use sugar as energy. So when you take real sugar away, you have to substitute it with something sweet. And that’s usually fruits, which are more plant based. And then you have the artificial sweeteners, like sucralose and aspartame. And those, especially that last category are ones I really highly recommend people refrain from. Because A, when you have these artificial sweeteners, again, it throws your mind and body off to think like this is something I don’t recognize as natural. So you’re either going to get more cravings for those, you’re going to get more migraines, and it throws off your blood sugar balance, which we know affect not just the day of the following day or sleep. So you’re almost in this downward spiral. So stay away from the artificial sweeteners. I would say all the time. I mean, the minute I see an artificial sweetener package, I’m like, No, we’re not going to buy it, we’re not going to especially keep it in the home, right? Because we don’t want to make those easily accessible for kids and also teacher kids to look at a food label and look for those particular things that I think are like absolute Nanos, we need to we shouldn’t even budge or, you know, have sort of leeway for those. Yeah, I was gonna say like your natural, 


Patrice Badami 18:43 

Yeah, that’s another one you’re worth pitfalls, and other, just personal experience that can cause stomach upset, which is obviously counterproductive. But there’s a lot of different side effects that these different sugar substitutes, can can cause. And there are some amazing substitutes that are natural, such as dates. I love dates, that’s something you can use when you’re baking, you can even get date sugar. So that’s something take a look in your in your health store, take a look at all the different sugars that are available, that are that can take the place of white sugar, but can also also change the texture of what you’re making. We made brownies with the dates that came out great, even sweet potatoes, even though that sounds crazy. That’s a trend now sweet potatoes in substitute of the sugar along with a little bit of dates. And you’re it’s you make some amazing things. So you got to do a little research there.


 Argavan Nilforoush 19:37 

Yeah, and even hiney local honey because you’re getting nutritional benefits too. And not just a sweetness. So it’s a win win. So there are lots of options alternatives out there. It’s a matter of knowing what to look for. And I’m happy to provide a list as well. You know, natural sweeteners that our listeners and audience can look for. You mentioned fat that’s another big one right? I see it all the time. Fat free low fat. So with fat free low fat products, again, we liked the mouthfeel the taste of fatty foods. So when you take that away, well, how can we make something here is the same way. So you take away fat and you increase carbohydrates in the form of sugar. So, fat free products, if you look on the again, if you look on the label the ingredient list, you’re going to see a lot of sugar sugar substitutes, and make up for the texture and the flavor that would otherwise be missing. So you’re gonna get to almost too much sugar with fat free products. And as we know, healthy fats are important fat is important for child brain development. So you don’t ever want to do fat free or low fat for young kids, especially, they need that full fat for the brain. And it also keeps you feeling fuller longer. So fat is something that you do want in your body, you don’t want the low fat substitutes, because you’re gonna end up again craving those more, eating more of those because your body is devoid of the fat. And instead you’re getting the lack of nutrients, 


Patrice Badami 21:08

 Right. And the other thing to keep in mind is when you have any grab, you know, a package of low fat or fat fried chips, for example, they’re going to increase the sodium, which is also another thing, you have to be very careful, especially if you’re on a low sodium diet. So that’s something else to think about as well as the sugar, that that they have to do something to make it taste, you know, palatable, so that when they sell it, people will be purchasing these items. So yes, definitely be very careful with low fat because your, your children, their brains, everyone’s bringing the 60% fat, so you need to come up with some alternatives. Even avocados can be used in some of these baked goods to increase that the nutrition, the fiber and ensure that there’s healthy fats that your child is taking in. So you don’t have to feel bad. If you’re giving them brownies you made yourself because you know what’s in there, and they don’t taste the avocado, it just gives that nice smooth texture. So that’s something to keep in mind as well. So when we’re looking at cholesterol and carbs, what, you know, rather fat, cholesterol and carbs all three, what are percentages that we need to steer clear of? And what is a healthy one for each of those items. 


Argavan Nilforoush 22:18 

Okay, I’m gonna simply file that because sometimes people hear cholesterol and carbs, and what am I looking for. So within your labels, you’ll see percentages right next to the nutrient, what I would say is, so keep in mind the numbers 5%, and 20%. So 5% is a low number 20% is a high number. So we want 5% or less of the not good stuff, right? So if we put in sodium and cholesterol, trans fat, we want that to be in that category, sugar. And we want 20% or more of the nutrients. So for example, if you’re looking at this list, and you see fiber, and you see calcium and the end and iron, and potassium, those are the numbers we want to see 20% More of now, obviously, not all foods are going to have all of those nutrients. But keep those two numbers in mind, this is where I really like to simplify 5% or less of the not good stuff 20% or more.


Patrice Badami 23:18

It’s a lot easier to keep in mind. Because now that’ll stick in people’s minds. Five is the negative items, you know what you’re not supposed to, you know, take too much in of the fat and the cholesterol and the sugar, and then use the 20 for the good stuff, which is great. So because five is very, very important. 


Argavan Nilforoush 23:35 

But two numbers. So Patrice that I do want to focus on our fiber and sugar. Because I think those two numbers, we do want to we do want to understand the numbers. So with sugar, we want to aim for five grams or less per serving than we know it’s a it’s a decent size option for a snack or food. And then with fiber, again, three to five grams or more per serving five would be great. But I would even say if we see something even with three grams or more, that’s a good option. Three to five grams of fiber per serving. And then less than 10 grams of sugar, five grams being very ideal or less, or serving of sugar. So those two numbers, I would say look at those and then the 5% and the 20% we mentioned and you’re likely to get a better product. 


Patrice Badami 24:28 

Yes. And what are some examples of complex carbs compared to processed carbs and what what’s more nourishing and sustainable. So just like what’s a really great complex carbs. 


Argavan Nilforoush 24:43

So you mentioned a sweet potato. That’s a great one. Oh, anything with whole grains? So quinoa, right? Yeah. So that’s a great way to add. So it’s basically anything that’s intact, that hasn’t been stripped of all the good stuff, right? So the opposite simple would be It’s, it’s just what’s left of it, it’s been processed so much that you’re left with like the white bread and the white pasta. And you know, that kind of stuff that unfortunately most Americans eat up. But the complex carbohydrates, again, you’re getting the fiber as well. So, as much as possible, the brown rice and quinoa, you know, the vegetables, especially if you’re eating a lot of those, you want to incorporate more of those. So less simple sugars, and a lot of the complex carbohydrates. And again, I love to provide like a grocery list, right for your audience. And that way, when they’re at the store, they kind of know, you know, these are things that I can add more of in my cart, and, you know, maybe refrain or avoid some of the other foods that I know that the competitive market out there. 


Patrice Badami 25:48 

Yeah, I think in general, you just have to see like, you know, when you look at something you have to say is this something that grows in nature, is it something that’s pretty much goes back to, it’s something that’s not taking several steps in order to be brought to market. So if it’s something like you go to the store, and you buy something like a chip compared to an actual sweet potato, we know that we can maybe make a substitute, maybe we can make our own chips, even using some of these Breyers at home, you can get yourself get yourself some sweet potatoes, slice them thin with a mandolin, put put your own sea salt on it, or Himalayan pink salt, and then you can fry it. So that’s something that that’s an you know, an alternative. I know people who are short on time. But if you don’t have the time, think what’s the substitute that I can actually put together to satiate that need for a french fry or something of that nature. So when we look at the I’m looking at I have right in front of me I have again, I’m not being sponsored, I’m not being sponsored by anything, I just have something in front of me. That’s a it’s a gluten free item. And I just wanted to ask you this about this. So polyunsaturated fat, mono unsaturated fat. What does that mean? 


Argavan Nilforoush 27:00 

Okay, so I’m curious what that food is. And I’m glad you brought up gluten. So that’s another important. So gluten free right now we know has become very popular. And if you have celiac disease, or celiac sensitivity, of course, gluten free is a must, right as part of your diet. But for everyone else who considers gluten free item, healthy. This is again, where you want to look at the label. So Gluten is a protein. So when you take that away, it has to be high in something else, which is going to be high in sugar or carbohydrate. So if you compare to foods that are regular versus gluten free, you’ll see that the carbohydrate content is actually going to be much higher, because the protein part is missing. So let’s look at this one. For example, Patrice. So what do you what is the item did? 


Patrice Badami 27:46

Okay, so this is crackled bread gluten free, and it says under total carbohydrates, 6%, sodium 6%. And then protein one gram sugars, zero.


 Argavan Nilforoush 27:59 

Okay, so what is the fiber content? That’s one thing I would look. 

Patrice Badami 28:04 

Fiber is less than one gram 1%. total carbs 16. So, Argavan Nilforoush 28:15 yeah, okay, and it’s gluten free. So we want to see what is the source of the gluten free. So if you look at the ingredients list, what is the first item listed rice.


 Patrice Badami 28:23

 flour, corn, flour, sugar, salt, and so I left this in and contains that’s it that’s in there. 


Argavan Nilforoush 28:32 

Okay, so we saw rice being a carbohydrate, corn being in carbohydrate, and then sugar being a carbohydrate. So this is where again, like, it may not be the best option. But there are other naturally this is why I say the word natural gluten free item, right? Like if you have something made with quinoa flour, or tap flour, or any of those complex carbohydrate, those are the better options because you can still have something that’s naturally gluten free. But it’s not so processed, where it’s still considered less than optimal healthy food versus one that also will give you other benefits.


Patrice Badami 29:09 

Right. And I use almond flour tortillas, which I love them. 


Argavan Nilforoush 29:13 

I love that. They’re really good. Since it’s, you know, not there’s nothing against Girl Scout, of course, I purchased it to support a friend. But this is a good example that I wanted to show you. So if you look at the ingredients list, I was actually pretty shocked. And this is where I feel like companies can do better right? Because we do market this and promote this to families and kids. So it says peanut butter, right. But what’s in the peanut butter, peanut sugar hydrogenated palm oil and salt. So just in a ingredient that’s supposed to be natural. We’ve already added a whole bunch of other stuff. Right and that’s just the first four. Then we have more sugar enriched flour we have vegetable oil, we have cocoa salt, corn starch sorbitan Tris theory, right? It’s like so what are those things? Right? So again, this is not something you want to have on a daily basis, because you can tell the difference between something like this. And, for example, something like this. So they’re very transparent. Everything is listed right there on the box, right? It’s actually short enough where they can list it this way. Yeah. So again, you want to see this is where you can tell the difference between two products, and two different ingredients lists as well as the labels.


Patrice Badami 30:36 

Right and the hydrogen, here’s what I want to definitely ask you. Okay, we have some questions, we went over a lot of things. hydrogenation. Can you tell everyone what that is? So they understand.


 Argavan Nilforoush 30:47 


Yes, so hydrogenated just means there’s been an extra hydrogen that’s been added. So it sticks around longer. And things that stick around longer, unfortunately, means they do more harm to the body than good. So you know, like trans fat, if you see hydrogenated oils, even a lot of the industrial oils that you see, you know, for a while, like Mazola, oil, and corn oil were popular, those are actually not ones that you want to have, I’m actually in your kitchen at all, sound restaurants and places outside, we’ll still use it. But those cause inflammation. And so when you consume a lot of food with those, you’re creating a lot of inflammation in your body. And so we’re now seeing 70% of all of the chronic conditions that people are experiencing have to do with inflammation in the body. And that has to do with just especially the oil and all the foods, the processed ingredients that we’re consuming that our bodies are not designed to. Yeah, growing and causing all these. 


 Patrice Badami 31:46 

Yeah,I noticed stomach upset. Whenever I if I ever say Oh, I’m just gonna have a little piece of and then I get stomach upset. So also, if you have a child or someone in your family who has GERD or reflux, you’re not going to feel great. If you have a lot of hydrogenated products. It’s just it’s going to cause heartburn, stomach distress, and even dizziness or headaches. That’s we’ve experienced here, and it’s just not theirs, you have to look for the alternatives. So let me say this, we’re so glad that we had our Argavan here  today are going on the approach baby steps nutrition, you’re going to be offering us some some amazing links. Why don’t you tell us what those are again, so that people can know to go print these things out in the shownotes? 


Argavan Nilforoush 32:30 

Yeah, so I want to make it as easy as possible for consumers. So I’m going to be offering the two lists that I mentioned from the Environmental Working Groups are going to be the clean 15 and the Dirty Dozen, and then a grocery list. So when you’re at the store, I love to go through the perimeter of the grocery store, you know, you can walk through the aisles, you can find a lot of great items in there as well. But it’s just a matter of what do I want to fill my pantry, my freezer, my fridge more of and try to avoid, you know, having a lot of things like this in the house, where people are more likely to snack again, we talked about how we crave those things more. They’re designed to be right popular and delicious. And just starting to make those changes for your family for the whole family. Right. There’s no reason why one person should start these are all things everyone should be doing and getting your kids involved and teaching your children because as they get older, we want them to be healthy, happy adults with the right knowledge about food. 


Patrice Badami 33:29


 And I noticed just as a side note, I don’t have the packaging, but I have these granola bars. There’s literally there’s literally just peanuts, oats and dates. And that’s it. So it’s all you need. And they’re really good and you just need to eat one I’m full when I eat the one literally and normally if it if it isn’t or these like we had mentioned fat free items, you’ll want more and you’ll also be causing inflammation with the added ingredients later so so again, Argavan Nilforoush of baby steps nutrition, check her out on Instagram, tell him all the different social medias they can find you on. 


Argavan Nilforoush 34:03 

Yeah, you can find me anywhere on Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn. I’m also on YouTube. I put a lot of my Instagram lives over there. I also have a podcast titled baby steps nutrition podcast. Speaking of food labels, I’ve covered a lot about the food politics, if anyone is interested to learn more about what’s happening with the food industry, and there’s a lot of other stuff about nutrition, mental health, physical health systems.  


Patrice Badami 34:28 

She’s a bevy of information. And we’re so happy we had her as a guest today on Acorn to Tree in The Kitchen. Join us again for more really important episodes where we provide you with information that’s really helpful for your families. So once again, thanks a lot and Argavan. Thanks for coming today and everyone listening. 


Argavan Nilforoush 34:47

My pleasure.  Bye bye.

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