Archive for the ‘Organic Product Reviews’ Category

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Natural food labeling vs. Organic food labeling

In Natural Foods,Organic,Organic Product Reviews,Organic vs Non-Organic,Reading Ingredients and Labels,Reading Nutrition Labels on September 11, 2013 by organicconversion

Remember, “natural” food is not the same thing as USDA Organic. Take a look at these Wal-mart fruit bars…(Yes, I found out only later that these are only sold at Wal-mart & Sam’s Club and are not really a regular brand. That would have changed my buying decision, but too late now).

ImageI recently bought these at Wal-mart…looking for a better option that isn’t so expensive as the one I usually buy. I know, big mistake. First, notice the 100% natural on the box…that does not mean organic!

The one we got was the “Caribbean Mix” frozen fruit bar.

Ingredients: Strawberries, Pineapple, Mango, Passion Fruit, Coconut Flakes, Water, Cane Sugar, Natural Stabilizers (Guar Gum, Carob Bean Gum, Carrageenan), Citric Acid.

The ingredients look okay though the stabilizers really aren’t great for you. Carrageenan is a derivative of seaweed. Some studies indicate that it can cause cancer in animals. People can also be allergic. It can irritate the bowel. You can read more about it online at Charis Holistic Center where there are some nice articles on it.

Really, if you look at the nutrition label these are pretty much just sugar.

ImageWorse than all that, they tasted like rotten fruit! We threw them away. My kids are not picky either, they tasted that gross. Save your money and spend a bit more on the good stuff or freeze your own fruit pops.

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Organic Psyllium Husk from India review

In Natural Foods,Organic,Organic Foods,Organic Product Reviews,Raw foods on September 11, 2013 by organicconversion Tagged: , ,

Image“100% certified organic fiber. Heart healthy. USDA organic. Excellent source of natural dietary fiber. About psyllium. Psyllium fiber is a convenient way to maintain gastrointestinal health. Derived from the seeds of the herb plantago ovata, this bulk-forming dietary fiber naturally promotes healthy elimination and regularity while supporting the gastrointestinal system. Why organic psyllium. Psyllium is one of India’s key export crops, providing approximately 85% of the world’s supply. While conventional psyllium husk products offer high fiber, most of these crops are grown on conventional industrialized fertilizers, and post-harvest chemical treatments. Organic India psyllium is certified organic. No synthetic pesticides, herbicides, chemical fertilizers, or chemical treatments are used at any time.” – Google product description

I like this product, I found it at the local natural foods store and I add it to my morning protein smoothies to bulk up my daily fiber. It is best to drink it right away before the fiber bulks up (which takes a few minutes in the cup). It will make you feel full longer. I like knowing that it is organic because these are the husks which is where pesticides would be heaviest in conventionally grown foods.

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He wanted seconds of the spinach!?!

In Healthy Organic Recipes,Organic,Organic Foods,Organic Product Reviews,Organic vs Non-Organic on February 12, 2012 by organicconversion Tagged: , ,

This morning we got up and I decided to make breakfast for us, but I’d just been reading an article about how bad sugar is for our bodies and also why whole grains can make us fat so when my son wanted cinnamon toast for breakfast I said no and we opted for omelets instead.

I made what turned out to be the most amazing sautéed spinach and greens mixture for the omelet.

Pretty simple, it was organic butter with sea salt, 50/50 mix of organic greens and organic minced garlic.

I went super light on the cheddar cheese and made the omelet with minimally processed turkey slices and organic rice milk.

We all went crazy for it! I’d only made 1/2 the container of greens the first round, but we all wanted seconds of the spinach so I made more!

Only recently we switched to organic butter and organic regular milk – again food budget is tight which is why I don’t get to go 100% organic and I have to pick and choose where to spend the extra money if there is an obvious difference.

Well, besides being a completely different color, organic butter is also tastier and cooks better than the regular old butter I’ve been using. With organic milk I noticed that it keeps longer in the fridge without any strange smell or taste. Organic milk has a “milk” taste, even in the low-fat variety. The regular non-organic milk starts having no taste and looking like white water in the low-fat and no fat varieties.

We also tried organic safflower oil and organic coconut milk (SoDelicious Vanilla) this week which were both excellent!

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Driscoll’s Organic Raspberries vs. Driscoll’s Regular (non-organic) Raspberries

In Organic,Organic Companies,Organic Foods,Organic Product Reviews,Organic vs Non-Organic on January 29, 2012 by organicconversion Tagged: , , , ,

Driscoll’s Organic Raspberries vs. Driscoll’s Regular (non-organic) Raspberries

I was in Super Target shopping for groceries here in Minnesota and I came across some Driscoll’s organic raspberries that looked extremely tasty so I picked them up. As I walked down the aisle I came across the regular non-organic Driscoll’s raspberries which were $1 cheaper. With the container of organic in my hand, I leaned in to look closer at the regular since they were the same brand and I was so shocked I whipped out the phone camera and took a picture of them side-by-side. The regular (non-organic) raspberries were a pale red in comparison with a whitish powder coating, they were ripe and not rotten or anything, and if I wouldn’t have had the organic in my hand I wouldn’t have thought anyhting of it- but the difference in color and quality was so noticable it was like the other weren’t really like real raspberries at all.

Of course, once I took the picture, I kid you not, the produce man followed me around like I was a spy or something! Eventually, I’ll figure out how to get this mysterious phone picture off my phone and post it here for you to see!

Driscoll’s organic raspberries are USDA certified organic and the same company also offers non-organic raspberries. If they truly cared about why organic food is important and not just making more money of the designation “organic” how can they live with that?

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The “I’m too sick to be cooking, but I really need chicken soup” recipe…

In Budget Organic Food,Healthy Organic Recipes,Organic,Organic Foods,Organic Product Reviews on November 15, 2011 by organicconversion Tagged: , , ,

Ugh, yucky cold, I fought valiantly for a whole week and thought I’d beat that itchy scratchy throat and mysterious traveling body aches that signal an impending cold…shoulda gone to the Y and killed it in the sauna (works every time by the way), but I didn’t. Dawn killed hers with massive amounts of vitamin C- but no, I didn’t do that either! It was weird, I was fine, we made jam this weekend on Sunday afternoon and right after I got super tired all the sudden and then wham- full on cold- out of the blue.

I made homemade chicken noodle soup last night for everyone, but it was a super lazy I’m too sick to do much recipe…

 

“I’m too sick to be cooking, but I really need chicken soup recipe”

1 bag Organic Durum Wheat Noodles- Spirals

4 cups fancy mixed veggies (frozen) which included broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, yellow squash and green zucchini

2 pints Organic, free range Chicken broth by Swanson

1 teaspoon sea salt

4 frozen chicken breast tenders

 

My son who is 9 now got to cook the frozen chicken since I was too tired to stand there and watch it- I just came to check that it was cooked through and we had a nice talk about the difference between white and pink when cooking chicken…I microwaved the cut up pieces just in case.

I cooked the veggies in the broth, added the cut up cooked chicken and added all that to the cooked and drained noodles.

We both agreed that it needed salt so we added that after. He ate 4 bowls of it, I couldn’t believe it! I skipped the meat in my bowl, but the rest was good.

I’d call this a semi-organic recipe…most of mine are at this point, only because cost prohibits me from going 100% organic and I acquire organic stuff when I can!

 

 

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Mmm Salsa!

In Healthy Organic Recipes,Organic,Organic Foods,Organic Product Reviews,Organic vs Non-Organic,Reading Ingredients and Labels on October 7, 2011 by organicconversion Tagged: , , , , , , , ,

I made real salsa for the first time tonight yum! I had a great jar of Desert Pepper Divino Mild salsa and Desert Pepper Chile con Queso set out too which was great, but I also made real salsa for the first time. My friend Dawn got to be my guinea pig-um-yeah…tester! First try-too chunky and diced tomato-like, but after a quick trip to the blender it was great! Who knew that those purple Spanish onions had such a kick? I’ve never cooked with them before, I usually use the yellow “cooking” onions at home. I also made homemade guacamole, yum! We had friends over and ate super cheesy nachos for my son’s b-day and watched Kangaroo Jack!

 

I guess it was a night for trying out new recipes!

Now, I bought the Desert Pepper salsas in the organic foods section of my store and I looked around online and it is sold at a lot of organic stores, BUT on the jar the ingredients don’t specifically say the veggies it is made with are organic, it just says no preservatives and no additives (which is great), but what do I call that- SEMI-organic? If you know if it is, comment and let me know!


Hmm, we took lots of pictures, but I need to start taking pictures of the food I make!

 

 

 

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Paya Organics at the Kalahari (Wisconsin Dells)

In Minnesota,Organic,Organic Beauty Reviews,Organic Companies,Organic Product Reviews,Reading Ingredients and Labels,Wisconsin on June 19, 2011 by organicconversion Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Paya Organics Review

by Kristina Blasen (June 2011)

Last week, we were on vacation at Wisconsin Dells and spent a night at the Kalahari resort on our last day before heading back to Minnesota. It was pretty neat that they had Paya organics shampoo, conditioner and bath soap in the room.

http://www.greensuites.com/Environmentally-Friendly-Hotel-Supplies/PAYA-Organics

According to their website, Paya products have:

•Biodegradable liquids and soaps made with natural and organic ingredients:
No Parabens, No Phthalates, No Mineral Oil

• Bottles made of PET, the most recyclable resin available

• Cartons & wrappers made with post-consumer recycled materials

• Cruelty free – never tested on animals

• All bottles and soaps are made in the USA

After being in the chlorine all day my hair was feeling dry and nasty, but this shampoo and conditioner worked great. The pool smell was gone and my hair was back to normal. It was strange though that the Kalahari is still using chlorine which is terrible for the body (lots of signs about showering off so you don’t get chemical burns and irritated skin, eyes, nose and throat were posted everywhere) when so many of the other hotels and resorts in Wisconsin Dells have switched to salt which is wonderful for the skin, not irritating and much nicer to play in!

We also stayed at the Wilderness Hotel where we had a great time, but they had the run-of-the-mill unidentifiable whitish shampoo in their bath though they had already switched to salt or some kind of non-chlorine mixture in their pools.