The Catcher in the Rye was one of my favorite books in high school. I always got a good laugh over Holden’s rants about “phonies” because, well, when you’re sixteen you react strongly to things like people who pile on the niceties and makeup to project some idea of “perfect.” Who am I kidding? I’m thirty and I still find myself tuning into my “phonies” radar in social settings, networking events, and the like.
One thing I didn’t think a lot about in high school was the insane amount of artificial sweeteners, colorings, and flavors in what I was eating. This was just as the fat-phobic 1990s were giving way to the low-carb-tasting early 2000’s, and everything was sugar-free, low-carb, etc. Even the yogurt l I ate in the morning on the way to school was full of crazy chemicals. Let’s not even go into the sugar-free hot chocolate mix I stirred into coffee and toted in a to-go cup to homeroom.
So glad I finally got over that phony sweet tooth.
In the past couple years, I’ve been really happy to see more and more food companies shifting away from those kinds of ingredients. Back in May, when I went to the General Mills headquarters, I was excited to hear that they would start removing artificial flavorings and colors from their cereals. 2016 sounded so far away at the time, but it’s finally here. How did that happen?
Anyway, General Mills has finally released seven varieties of classic cereals reformulated to be free of artificial flavors and colors. Here’s a link to their new TV ad announcing the change. Curious about how the company has been able to remove dyes from some of their more colorful cereals, like Trix? I was too. Here’s a Wall Street Journal article on the topic. My little dietitian heart was overjoyed to see turmeric extract on the list, along with fruit and vegetable juices.
Though I still wouldn’t call these healthy everyday breakfast cereal options, it’s certainly a step in a better direction. Now if only we could do something about the Red #40 in those cranberry supplement tablets I took when I thought I was getting a UTI over Thanksgiving. Like, seriously, my urinary tract does not care if the cranberry supplement is red—all that matters is that it works. Sorry, TMI. Don’t know how we got from healthy cereal to lady problems.
This post has been part of another Running with Spoons Thinking Out Loud link party, where randomness is the name of the game. Thanks to Amanda for hosting.