Here’s one reason olive oil gets all the glory

Being Italian-American, I grew up with olive oil always on our table and still use it on salads and in cooking. It hasn’t prevented me from needing two stents in six years, however

Olive oil is like the Mount Olympus of ‘good’ fat, most nutritionists agree. But exactly why is that the case? So much of nutrition science is still in its infancy that I often am skeptical when anything is touted as a ‘healthy’ food.

Always carry your own oil and vinegar packets to use on any salad. I buy these in bulk on Amazon.
Always carry your own oil and vinegar packets to use on any salad. I buy these in bulk on Amazon.

But a new study may give some insight into why olive oil can help us. Apparently it helps your good cholesterol, the HDL kind, work more effectively, according to an article in Cooking Light magazine.

Continue reading “Here’s one reason olive oil gets all the glory”

Healthier items disappearing from Mariano’s shelves???

I really hope this was a one-time out-of-stock case, but I’m not hopeful of that since I didn’t see shelf tags for either product. Please Mariano’s don’t let me down.

The Mariano’s supermarket chain took Chicago by storm a few years ago, generating so much positive buzz that Kroger in 2015 bought it and it’s parent company, Roundy’s for $800 million.

I've found two brands of low-sodium,low-sugar ketchup, Westbrae and LocalFolks Foods.
Localfolks ketchup, on the right, my favorite.

Mariano’s brought an approach to food sales that Wegman’s is known for on the East Coast — stores with more prepared foods and in-store chefs and eating areas, to the Midwest. What I liked about Mariano’s was that it stocked more low-salt and low-fat products than the major supermarket chains tend to do.

But my latest shopping trip to a Mariano’s in Skokie, Il., caused me some concern about whether that’s all changing under Kroger ownership. I go to Mariano’s specifically to buy three products — Kraft fat-free shredded mozzarella, low-salt canned olives and my favorite low-salt, low-sugar ketchup from Localfolks. But Mariano’s had neither the cheese nor the olives on my latest trip. Continue reading “Healthier items disappearing from Mariano’s shelves???”

Why fresh vegetables aren’t on sale at supermarkets

Supermarket ad flyers feature what the industry calls loss-leaders, items a supermarket is marking down to draw you into the store so you’ll buy processed foods with higher mark-ups. Vegetables used to be among these loss-leaders but I’ve been noticing lately than they’re not popping up on sales as much as they once did.

Mondelez has to compete with fruit for the healthy snack trade, can it?
Supermarkets realize shopper demand for fruit and vegetables is going up, so expect to see those items put on sale less often than in the, can it?

The reason is that people apparently are finally getting the message that they should be eating more fresh veggies and fruits and so are buying more. This was driven home to me in a recent Supermarket News opinion piece that’s worth a read. While it’s aimed at stores, it makes the point, “The growth of fresh and perishable products has been steady and strong.” Continue reading “Why fresh vegetables aren’t on sale at supermarkets”

Here’s how to save money while shopping for low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar foods

Eating healthier definitely costs more than eating highly processed, high-salt, high-fat, high-sugar offering these days. But that doesn’t mean you have to always pay more. Here’s where smart shopping comes into play, and it’s the reason I launched a smart shopping page here.

Know what items you want from which stores in your area and pounce on those items when they go on sale. I recently did that on a shopping trip to my┬álocal supermarket, Jewel, and saved 30% from the normal prices of what I purchased. Continue reading “Here’s how to save money while shopping for low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar foods”

Food labels– read them and know what they mean

Good tips all, especially preparing more of your own foods to control salt, fat and sugar content.

You should be thoroughly reading the labels on all processed foods you buy. If you don’t understand the nutrition panels on food and beverages, learn to read them intelligently.

Learn how to read this on every food item you buy.
Learn how to read this on every food item you buy.

Also, learn what you can and cannot have in your diet. Labeling can be confusing, as a recent article I read points out. Labels often carry exaggerated claims about a product’s healthiness or benefits it may or may not give you. Look past all that and concentrate on the nutrition panels. And get a conversion app for your phone that can translate grams into weights you can understand. U.S. nutrition labels list portion size in grams, who exactly measures that way other than high school science lab students? Continue reading “Food labels– read them and know what they mean”