Monthly Archives: February 2012

Why I’m glad I don’t eat hambrugers

Chains Stop Use of Chemical Beef

Ammoniated beef. What’s that you ask?

It’s the fatty, almost unusable parts of the cow that are treated with an ammonia and water mixture in order to kill bacteria. It’s been used in up to 70% of all ground beef sold in the U.S.

Why didn’t you know about this before?

The FDA doesn’t require the ground beef that contains this “pink slime,” as it has come to be called, to include ammonia in the list of ingredients since it’s considered a process for treating the beef. This “process” is so widespread because it allows beef producers to use otherwise inedible meat as a cheap filler for most ground beef products. And being absent from the label means that any ground beef products you purchase could potentially contain this sneaky disgusting stuff, unless you have a really good butcher whose word you trust.

I first learned about this from popular British chef, Jamie Oliver, about a year ago when he was crusading for healthier school meals in the LAUSD. He showed the process that goes into ammonia-treated beef; using an ingredient common in household cleaning products, that’s toxic nonetheless, and once the beef goes through a meat grinder it’s indistinguishable from regular ground beef. A quick and dirty way to get people to eat subpar food but charge the same price. Needless to say, if I did eat meat, ground beef would be the first thing to go.

McDonald’s has announced that it has not used ammoniated beef in it’s restaurants for the past 5 months. Which is great, but it makes you think about all that fast food you ate as a kid…

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New USDA school lunch guidelines: Michelle Obama pushes for better nutrition

USDA school lunch rules best ever — though pizza is still a vegetable – latimes.com.

Michelle Obama rocks; starting a vegetable garden and now advocating for better nutrition in school lunches. Kids deserve food that will keep them healthy, help them grow, and help them develop. They’re kids, for goodness sake, they aren’t aware or concerned with what’s best for themselves. They’ll go for what tastes and looks good.

When I was 11 I took a summer math class in order to get ahead and I ate curly fries and an It’s It ice cream bar every day for lunch; it tasted good and hit my savory and sweet desires, but nutritionally, it provided nothing but starch, sodium, and sugar.

The USDA, with a push from Michelle Obama, has announced new guidelines for the food that schools serve. Including whole grains, vegetables and calorie and sodium limits designed for specific age groups

Ideally, I believe that parents should be the owners of their children’s diet. Sending their children to school with a belly full of breakfast and a packed lunch is pretty much the only way to ensure your child eats healthy while at school. But that’s not always possible due to a myriad of factors, so in the meantime, we can be glad of the USDA’s changes to school lunches and hope for more health-based revisions in the future.

Hopefully the corporate food lobbyists will eventually fail and there can be a serving size limit for starchy vegetables (mainly, potatoes) and the tomato sauce on pizza won’t count as a serving of vegetables.

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