We've all heard that homemade is better. Especially when food is the topic. But what if we're home tired from a long day, or too sick to do more than microwave a can of chicken soup? We grab the nearest can. I know there is a growing movement of soup enthusiasts who consume more soup than anything else, believing this diet to be better for their bodies than a traditional dinner. All that is well and good, but now there is growing evidence that says homemade soup, of any kind, is better than anything from a can.
Recently, the Harvard School of Public Health studied participants in a trial of people who consumed canned soup products
Participants who consumed one can a day for five days in a row showed an increase of more than 1,221% in urine BPA (bisphenol-A), versus participants who consumed the same amount of freshly made soup. BPA is mainly found in the lining material of cans, certain hard plastics, some types of baby-bottles, some children's toys and even register receipts! So why is BPA bad? Because it's linked to neurological disorders, birth defects, ADD and even certain types of cancer.
It's bad enough that our vegetables aren't the nutrient vehicles we've been told they are, and it's even worse that we support international farmers before our own, but now this? So why are there alarming levels of BPA in the things we trust to not make us sick? It all comes down to the mighty dollar. The lining in cans and other types of food packaging are supposed to increase the shelf life of our food. The longer we can, in theory, keep food without spoilage, the more trust we're supposed to have in food manufacturers. But if that very food we're eating or drinking is slowly poisoning us, then what?
Then it is up to us to find out what's in our food, in the packages, where the food has come from, and to do something about it. But not everyone can. A large part of a population cannot afford to speak with their dollar when it comes to their food. The poor of any country, Canada, the U.S or Mexico, cannot afford to drive to a produce stand, pay a fair price for organic squash, tomatoes or apples and then preserve these in a way that the family is not dependant on a grocery store.
Not fair, but an uncomfortable fact.
In the meantime, food manufacturers are processing away nutrients, adding all kinds of nasty additives that are changing us on a molecular level and poisoning our kids with chemicals we can't even pronounce. And many of us are none the wiser.
But don't give up hope. We can make a difference. The first step is education. We need to find out what is in our food, and why it's there. What purpose does it serve? Then we need to make a stand and demand the removal of these compounds that are poisoning us, opening us up to cancer and food allergies and changing our bodies against our will.
Today, tomorrow, this week, make a pledge to feed your family more homecooked meals. The more vegetables you fit in there, the better. Yes, they may not be packed with nutrients like we've assumed all these years, but a homemade vegetable soup or stew will still be healthier than the canned version. Start there, one step at a time. Go to your local library, go to the internet, to the bookstore, however you get information...start researching food additives, food security, read as much as you can on corporate farming, find out how our modern food is preserved before it hits your local grocery store, find out how a can of corn can have a year long shelf life.
Read, learn, and start changing what you can in your own life, as you can.
Even if it all starts with replacing one can of soup with a steaming pot of homemade.