Reading List: No Cal Noodles, HFCS’s New Name and No More Birthday Cupcakes?!
In this week’s nutrition news: Markets hire dietitians to help shoppers, a controversy over cupcakes in the classroom and high fructose corn syrup petitioning for a new name.
The battle between cupcakes and carrot sticks is raging in schools around the country, but one school took a radical step: A principal in Redford Township, Michigan banned cupcakes from the classroom. Her reasoning? Not only are they unhealthy, but they also take time away from learning. But it's not an all-out sweets ban: cupcakes are still allowed in the lunchroom.
High fructose corn syrup has been banned from foods around the country, and many associate the refined sugar with over-processed foods. So what's the Corn Refiners Association to do? Change the sugar's name! They filed a petition with the FDA to change the name from “high fructose corn syrup” to “corn sugar.” The group hopes the change with help consumers feel better about product, but don't be fooled: no matter the name, high fructose corn syrup is still highly processed.
I've heard of no-carb noodles, but this Japanese brand of noodles (appropriately called NoOodle) are not only carb-free, they’re also calorie, fat and gluten-free. Sound too good to be true? These fiber and water-filled noodles are made of yams and have been eaten in Asia for centuries. Food manufacturers are now bringing these noodles to Western markets, where you may see them popping up very soon. Although they’re flavorless, they smell has been described to be squidlike out of the box but disappears under running water.
In an attempt to become more eco-friendly, students at the University of Iowa decided to ditch cafeteria trays. Getting rid of trays, helps reduce food waste, since students can't take as much food at one time. Trayless dining also has dietary implications: Students tend to eat only what they can carry. If they’re really hungry for seconds, they can go back for more food. Still no word if it will help students the infamous freshman 15, but it's definitely a step in the right direction!
A recent survey by the Grocers Association found that 77 percent of shoppers would like a dietitian to help them make healthier choices. In response, many grocery stores throughout the country are now offering this service. Dietitians review shopping lists and help customers make healthier choices.
Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. See Toby's full bio »