Reduced Diversity in Processed Foods Leads to Obesity

A researcher has claimed that obesity and cancer are not only a result of high-fat content, sugar, and salt in our diet but also the lack of diversity in our diets. Tim Spector, Professor of Genetic Epidemiology at the King’s College London, believes we are restricting our diets to processed foods with fewer ingredients. He thinks processed foods are responsible for the decrease in diversity of microbes in our guts.

Limiting Our Diets to Fewer Ingredients

Consumption of junk food is known by many as a big health risk, mainly due to saturated fats, high calories, chemicals, artificial colors, and sugar. 80% of processed foods are made up of four main ingredients: corn, wheat, soy, and meat. When compared to what our ancestors consumed, it is way too low. It is estimated that they consumed around 150 ingredients every week, something that we do not even come close to doing.

Studies have shown that it is the proliferation of a particular type of bacteria in our guts that are fueling the craving for junk food. The craving is leading to overconsumption, something that is definitely to blame for the high incidences of obesity, cancer, diabetes, and other lifestyle conditions. Literature suggests that each type of microbe in our gut prefers a given type of food, when it is deprived of that food, the bacteria is capable of doing anything to ensure it survives, the action can include signaling for more food intake.

Less Processed Foods, More Real Foods

low-calorie foods 1We have to fight back against these deadly lifestyle diseases and that starts with what we eat. At this point in humanity, it would be crazy to completely eliminate processed foods, but we have to eat less of them. We need to focus on consuming more real foods like our ancestors. As mentioned above, we need to eat a variety of ingredients. One should eat foods which are rich in fiber and consume adequate fresh fruits and vegetables. Manufacturers are also urged to reformulate their products in order to boost the diversity of ingredients in their products. Companies must accept that a majority of their foods are causing more harm than good, and should focus on improving the health of their customers as they move forward in creating products.

Inspired by foodnavigator.com

 

Consumers Want Transparency in Nutrition Labels

Consumer awareness is increasing; they are now making demands that have never been seen in the food and beverage industry. Accessibility to information is driving this move as customers are now aware of how different ingredients affect their health. They are avoiding foods that can cause harm to their bodies as well as the environment. Consumer food companies must take action and provide more transparency in the nutrition labels on their products.

 

The Future of Nutrition Labels

Trends in consumer preferences were captured in a recent research study by Packaged Facts, “Nutritional Labeling and Clean Labels“. The study found that 87 percent of the customers reported looking at nutrition labels and a significant number of Americans actively seek out nutritional guidelines and information.

The study also found out that 67 percent of American consumers preferred to buy groceries which have simple and few ingredients. Almost the same percentage reported taking the ingredient statement into consideration when they are making decisions to purchase packaged food and beverages.

Clean Label Trend Promotes Product Overhaul

The FDA requires that companies who are manufacturing food and beverages to provide nutrition facts and labels. The companies are going a step further, prompted by the consumer trends; they are developing entirely new products which do not have artificial ingredients and food colors. They are now making products that are safe for consumers and provide information on the nutrition label, which will help them identify safe foods and beverages. The trends are pointing to the following: customers will see GMO ingredients off the shelves, and artificial colors and ingredients will no longer be part of traditional products. In the food world, the consumer is the CEO, and the trends dictate that food businesses will have to adapt to survive.

From Kraft Food Group to Nestle USA, the big players in the food and beverages industry are overhauling their production. Nestle USA made an announcement that they would stop the use of artificial flavors and colors in their chocolate candies. Tyson Foods is expected to eliminate the use of antibiotics on their poultry by late next year. Kraft Food Group just like Nestle USA plans to stop using artificial preservatives and colors in their products. Another company that has followed suit is Hershey; the company plans to give customers easy and simple ingredients statement, this will help the customers make easier and healthier decisions in the store.

Inspired by cspnet.com

Simple Ingredients is the Key to Clean Labels

Food companies are in desperation mode to find simple ingredients that make their products healthier while not impacting the taste. Many have chosen to fortify their products with synthetic vitamins, but is that the answer? No, we need vitamins and essential phytonutrients from food based sources like fruits and vegetables.

Millennials Enjoy Energy Drinks Even With Safety Concerns

Over and over, concerns have been raised by the consumption of some of the ingredients in energy drinks and shots. From these concerns, we would expect the use of these products to go down as people strive to have a healthy lifestyle, but this is far from the reality. The consumption of energy drinks and shots have been on the rise. In America, it is expected that their consumption will continue to increase, especially among the millennials. A new report indicates that millennial consumption of energy drinks increased to 61% in a period of one year, this was a 6 % rise from the figures recorded in 2014. This is despite the fact that the Millennials express their reservations and concerns for energy drinks. 

Energy Drinks Need Warnings & Better Labeling

A significant percentage of energy drink consumers feel that manufacturers should provide more information to help the users make an informed decision. Customers are asking manufacturers to include details on the healthy amount that should be consumed on a daily basis. The labeling will help consumers avoid a situation where they drink more than is necessary. 

Consumer Behavior Explained

Energy drink consumers are aware of the dangers they put themselves in from consuming energy drinks, but surprisingly this does not stop them from consuming the products. Lifestyle changes have been partially blamed for the increased consumption. Older millennials are experiencing new situations like getting married or having kids that require more energy; this makes them resort to energy drinks to supplement those increased energy requirements. These same people display brand loyalty and have a potential of using the drinks for a longer period compared to other groups.

It is widely agreed and known that some of the ingredients used in making energy drinks are not healthy, but this seems to be a small concern to the majority of the consumers. They continue to take the drinks despite the concerns… With this kind of situation, it will take more than safety warnings to help people in making informed decisions about how they can lead a healthy lifestyle.

Inspired by mintel.com

Create Cleaner Labels with Simpler Ingredients

Energy drink manufacturers are going to be affected by the growing health and nutrition trend in the United States. The data from Mintel may indicate that millennials still enjoy energy drinks, but that trend is set to change. Consumers are demanding food and beverage products to use simpler ingredients and cleaner labels.

It’s time to experience NutriFusion®. Our GrandFusion blends are made from non-GMO fruits and vegetables to help processors use simpler ingredients to enhance the nutrition of their products. We patented a method for nutrient stabilization so that our ingredients can withstand the intensity of heating and cooling in modern day processing. If your brand is interested in learning more about our products, please visit our beverages page.

Infographic: Natural Vs. Synthetic Vitamins

Below is an infographic that highlights the significant differences between natural vitamins and nutrients from NutriFusion® and the typical synthetic vitamins made in a lab. Enjoy!

Infographic: Natural vs. Synthetic Vitamins |NutriFusion

The trends in consumer food preferences are all pointing to healthier and more nutritious products. We have all been working to do this over the past fifty years, but we have faced grand challenges when delivering nutrients from natural sources in processed foods. We decided enough was enough, so we developed our patented process for stabilizing the vitamins and nutrients in fruits and vegetables. NutriFusion® is a leading food ingredient technology for food companies looking to deliver natural vitamins and nutrients in their packaged food products. We help you use simpler ingredients and create a “clean label” for your consumers. If you are interested in learning more about NutriFusion® for your processed foods, beverages, or supplements, please click below.

Adults Not Meeting Daily Value of Fruits and Vegetables

Eating more fruits and vegetables reduces the risk of heart disease, strokes, some cancers, and also adds vital nutrients to our diets. When consumed in place of more energy-dense foods, vegetables and fruits can help in managing body weight. It is recommended that adults who engage in less than 30 minutes of moderate physical activity should consume 2 – 3 cups of vegetables and 1.5 – 2.0 cups of fruits daily.

There are two methods of determining the daily vegetable and fruit intake recommendations for adults who engage in less than 30 minutes of moderate physical activity daily. The first is the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) while the other is based on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and is expressed in cup equivalents. However, a recent study conducted during 2007 – 2010 found that half of the total U.S. population consumed less than 1.5 cups of vegetables and less than one cup of fruit daily; 87 percent did not meet the daily value recommendations, and 76 percent did not meet fruit intake recommendations. National estimates indicate low fruit and vegetable consumption with substantial variation by state.

CDC’s Model Says Fruits and Vegetables Intake is Abysmal

fruits and vegetablesVegetable and fruit consumption information are available from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), which is the sole source of dietary surveillance information for most states. However, the federal vegetable and fruit intake recommendations, expressed in cup equivalents are not directly comparable to the frequency of input captured by BRFSS.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) did an analysis of the median daily frequency of vegetable and fruit intake based on BRFSS’s 2013 data for the District of Columbia and the 50 states. They applied newly developed prediction equations to BRFSS to calculate the percentage of the population of each state that meets vegetable and fruit intake recommendations.  The result was a bit disturbing. Overall, only 13.1 percent of the participants met the recommended fruit intake, ranging from 17.7 percent in California to 7.5 percent in Tennessee, and 8.9 percent met the recommended vegetable intake, ranging from 13.0 percent in California to 5.5 percent in Mississippi.  What this means is that a lot of effort is needed to build consumer demand for vegetables and fruits through placement, competitive pricing, and promotion in schools, child care, grocery stores, worksites, and communities.

Since vegetable and fruit consumption is currently low across all states and affects multiple health outcomes, continued efforts are needed to increase demand and consumption. Improving intake during childhood might be the key to improving fruits and vegetables consumption for adults.

Inspired by cdc.gov

NutriFusion® to the Rescue

All the research points to the health and nutrition benefits of consuming fruits and vegetables on a daily basis. The problem is we are not doing a good job as a society in encouraging that behavior and making fruit and vegetable nutrition readily available. This study by the CDC speaks to why we do what we do. Our special blends give consumer packaged food companies, beverage companies, and supplement companies the ability to incorporate natural nutrition from fruits and vegetables into their products. NutriFusion® is processing stable meaning that it can withstand the heating and cooling of modern day food processing. The NutriFusion® innovation is leading a revolution in the food industry to use simpler ingredients and make some of our favorite foods much better for us. If you are interested in learning more about NutriFusion® for your processed foods, beverages, or supplements, please click below.

 

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FDA Says No More “Unsafe” Trans Fats

In a bid to reduce heart attacks and heart disease among Americans, the U.S. Food safety regulators have decided to ban a primary source of artificial trans fats in processed foods. According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs) are not “generally recognized as safe” for human consumption. PHOs are an important source of artificial trans fat in the diet of many Americans.

The regulators have given food manufacturers until June 18, 2018 (3 years) to remove PHOs from food products. The food safety regulators feel this is enough time for food manufacturers to ask the FDA for permission to use foods that contain PHOs or to reformulate their products to eliminate PHOs. The regulators say that at the end of the compliance period, no food manufacturer will be allowed to add PHOs to human food unless they have been permitted by the FDA to do so.

FDA’s Ostroff Sees Link Between Trans Fats and Heart Health

Dr. Stephen Ostroff, FDA’s Acting Commissioner, says this action is expected to prevent thousands of fatal heart attacks every year and reduce coronary heart disease. The FDA anticipates that many companies will achieve compliance with the deadline since some companies are already removing PHOs from their processed foods. Following consultations with experts and a review of the scientific evidence, a preliminary determination to regard PHOs as unsafe for human consumption was announced by FDA in 2013. Currently, regulators are in the final stages of the resolution after taking into consideration the comments from the public.

According to Dr. Susan Mayne, the Director of the FDA’s Food Safety and Applied Nutrition Center, the determination is based on the input from all stakeholders received during the public comment period, as well as extensive research into the effects of PHOs. Food companies use artificial trans fats to increase the stability of processed foods, extend their shelf life, and improve their texture. This is because they are more readily available and cheaper than natural versions from dairy and meat sources. Since 2006, companies have had to show trans fat content on the nutrition facts labels of food products sold in the US.

The primary sources of PHOs in the American diet are savory snacks such as coffee creamers, microwave popcorn, ready-to-use frosting, and frozen pizza. Other sources include cakes, pies, cookies, fried foods, kinds of margarine, and spreads. PHOs are bad for health because consuming them increases “bad” cholesterol ( LDL) and lowers “good” cholesterol (HDL) in the body, raising the risk of coronary heart disease.

Inspired by www.medicalnewstoday.com