March 31, 2010

Country Crock o' sh*t

So you know that I am a cheapassmama, right?  And I am trying to eat cleaner, right?  

What happens when my cheapass-ness conflicts with my cleaner-eating-ness?  

In the case of pre-existing unclean food still currently in the house, cheapness wins out.  Meaning once the not-so-clean food is gone, I won't re-buy it. BUT, I am not throwing out edible food.

Sorry Jillian.

With one exception.

Country Crock. This is not edible. Or food.

All 5 lbs (yes, we had a 5lb tub from BJs) barely used.  And it went into the garbage.

Why o why did I ever buy this spreadable hydrogenated soybean oil crapola?  Because like many, many people, I actually thought margarine and spreads were better for me than butter.

I mean it *is* vegetable oil.  See, there is vegetable in there!

And butter, well animal products are high in cholesterol and cholesterol is bad for me, right?

Wait. What did I just say?  Animal products are bad and chemically altered vegetable product is good?

Oh crap.

I am a smart woman.  I have two higher-ed degrees. And I got suckered like many, many people into thinking that food is a bunch of nutrients rather than food as a whole.

Michael Pollan writes, "We have come to look upon "nutritionism" as a valid means of determining (healthy) value in our diet; food has been reduced to its composition of good and bad nutrients, but are we really eating healthier?"

And if you think about it, margarine contains trans fat.  So essentially, as Pollan discusses in In Defense of Food and Omnivore's Dilemma, we took a food that could potentially be bad for us and replaced it with something that could kill us.

Oh and by the way, just because something says "NO TRANS FAT PER SERVING" doesn't mean that it *doesn't* have trans fat.

According to the the Food and Drug Administration (and as posted on Country Crock's site), companies that contain a "small amount" (less than 0.5g of trans fat per serving), they don't have to list it.  So that glob o' margarine that provides "structure and texture" is trans fat.  


So what is a girl to do? Especially one that has children that request; nay DEMAND "buttered bread"? Yeah, butter doesn't spread all that well.

And the answer is....Land o Lakes Spreadable Butter with Canola oil.

Let's compare.

Land o Lovely: Cream, Canola Oil, Salt.

Crock o Crap: Vegetable Oil Blend (Liquid Soybean Oil, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Hydrogenated Cottonseed Oil), Water, Whey (Milk), Salt, Vegetable Mono and Diglycerides, Soy Lecithin, (Potassium Sorbate, Calcium Disodium EDTA) Used to Protect Quality, Citric Acid, Artificial Flavor, Vitamin A (Palmitate), Beta Carotene (for Color).

Hmmmmm. Which do you think is better?

Just because it has calcium, or omega-3 added or lower in fat than butter, doesn't mean that it is better for you than butter.

And as the great Julia Child said, "If you are afraid of butter, use cream."


Mia said...

LMAO - well I personally don't use either but if you have to, I say use butter. My gf wouldn't live without it. Or try to sway your kids to try the joys of EVOO, salt, pepper and bread. YUMMO (EW I just turned into Rachael Ray).

Dan said...

We had so many of those Country Crocks in my house as a kid it wasn't even funny. We used to have a spread that we really liked but then it disappeared off the shelves. Never a good sign. We use that Land O Lakes one now, too.

courtney said...

Just read this post (found you from RLAM). We just leave real unsalted butter in the butter dish on the counter. Has it gone bad before? Maybe once or twice. Esp now that it really only my father in law that puts butter on anything. But then I also usually have a stick at room temp for real cookies. Just a thought for you. I am 6 months into WW lifetime (2nd time) and 1 year back into running (after 10 years). I shared your blog on our facebook page UrbanMama Runner (Portland OR). Looking forward to following.

Megan said...

I did not know that Julia Child said that! Now I know why I love her. :) I figured out that butter/margarine thing in college. (I am not normally that astute!) I have enjoyed many years of moderate butter use, rather than years of immoderate margarine abuse. :) I try to convert everyone I meet, now I'll send them your linky. :)

Kelley said...

Girl. I love me some butta! Have 4 lbs of it in the fridge right now, as a matter of fact(Christmas baking and all that). It's part of the reason I run as much as I do!!

Brad said...

so, back in the '70's, I read a book on healthy living. The author suggested using "sun butter." The recipe is: 1 part salted butter to 1 part canola oil. We put 2 sticks (8 oz.) of butter in a bowl to soften. Then add a cup of canola oil and whisk. Then we pour it into some glass jars we have and refrigerate.
Glad, like you, to find Land O'Lakes giving what must be that same recipe a shot!

Anonymous said...

I cringe when I see Oleo as an ingredient in a recipe. This would be the reason I never liked cookies and my mom's baked goods as a kid. Today she wonders why mine taste better. I know, not a health food and all, but my food is real.

Anonymous said...

Think higher ! Feeling bloted after you eat . Get away from grains and sugars . Go atkins or high protien yes oils make eggs your friend it is a meat . It is not dairy. Stay away vrom milk with exeption wipped cream once in a while and yes chococolate 90% coco has low carbs when u get head aches through cleaning your body out slowly green tea but eat all you want of meat bacon real butter . Pay attention to tran fat . Make your own dinner learn to cook your own food . If you dont know the ingriedents its loaded with fillers like gluten wich tricms your brain into believeing you are eating right ,but your getting fat . Anything in package ready to throw in the oven has sugar and this thing called wheat flour oh and glucose wich is sugar .just follow the rabbit down the whole and you will see tbe light .eat for a say of life not for a diet . Get rid of that word . We were built to eat meat and very little vegetables. No more than 30 carbs a day and no trans fat you will poor weight off . Look up atkinsthere are stories where people were diabetic & living tbis way of life became inslin free . Consult your doctor about this if it is right for you . God bless you all in closing stay away from bread a d sugars and and additives.

Wali Paul said...

Please an article on processed meats would be helpful you know those packaged quick grabs that we feed our children for lunch daily?

Unknown said...

I'm all for eating meat however sometimes the way the animals are being raised or processed is unethical not to mention un healthy for us to consume. Free-range chickens and grass fed beef are typically more expensive than their unhealthy counterparts. Hopefully this will change as more consumers demand quality Foods.