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"Health" Food

Posted by silversword 9A (My Page) on
Mon, Jul 22, 13 at 15:26

General discussion, I'm hoping, about how important food is and how many people hop on the "health" bandwagon having no real idea what they're ingesting.

Case in point: Body by Vi! products. I have a friend who is a representative, and claiming sucralose is tested, approved and not bad for us. I beg to differ, and don't need fake additives in my food. Any company who has a patented blend of ingredients they won't list on the label isn't going to get any of my grocery money...


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: "Health" Food

Even with "healthy" food an individual has to learn their own body and what foods work for them. Myself and my two sons (3 and 12) tend to be a little hypoglycemic so we eat lower carb, no dairy or gluten, low sugar and very limited nightshades. My husband and two daughters (5 and 11) have no problems with these foods. I truly believe it is an individual thing and one has to pay attention to how they react to all foods. The past two years I phased out processed foods. After watching a little video from the "flavouring" (chemical) industry it made it an easy transition. I will not trust a government body saying a "fake" food is safe.


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A friend of mine has significant problems with the general use of the terms "organic" and "natural" - he explained that very little we can buy in any store really is what people assume if labeled in such a way where it sounds so clean of anything other than seed, sun and water and then " garden elves" grow, harvest, pack and ship food. The only way to have what most people think of as organic and natural is to grow the veggies themselves, praying for a good crop which isnt ruined by other insects, wildlife or disease natural to the vegetable and to raise all meat the same way. It was a depressing conversation, as he told me that those with degrees in nutrition along with farmers who try to grow as clean a product as possible know that it is almost impossible to do so in the manner the public thinks is providing them what they imagine and still have a good enough yield to make a small profit. He did assure me that by carefully buying from farmer's markets are healthy enough and meats that are free range which eat healthily and dont have a bunch of antibiotics are good enough for reasonable good health, but the chickens raised as naturally as possible are not going to be big and plump as people are now used to, but small without a lot of meat on the bones.

Im hoping that he was exaggerating a bit, he made it sound like it was pretty much impossible in these times to be able to ship to stores veggies truly free of anything at all from the seed to truck delivery at a grocery, even one that says it only sells organic, natural products as the term a lay person assumes those terms to mean.


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Silver, we've never been proponents of artificial sugar products, or anything artificial, for that matter. We've taken to using raw honey as our go to sweetener.

We are big believers in researching anything before using it or changing any dietary regimen... so we dig deep for pros and cons before we begin any regimens or recommend anything to others... and we always recommend, as with anything, that others do the research, themselves, before embarking upon any changes.


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I will not use any "health food" alternatives, additives or supplements. I'm more concerned about what's in that than what's in my food!

I don't buy "organic" but I do buy antibiotic and hormone free meats and poultry and only wild caught fish.

Nothing processed to speak of.......scratch cooking is so darn easy and way cheaper!

Tonight is free range hormone free chicken, homemade BBQ sauce, yellow beans and baby potatoes from the farmers market and fresh strawberries with....hanging my head in shame...whipped cream...lots of whipped cream.


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I too am much more concerned about my animal products over produce. Free range, antibiotic free here. We also eat very high fat (good fats). The low fat diet proposed to me almost cost me my health.


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We avoid additives. It's pretty difficult to completely avoid unnatural things that can happen to our food, though. Even though our veg garden is organic non-GMO produce, we can't prevent the acid rain that comes down on us.


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RE: "Health" Food

Many supplements, especially meal replacement liquids and mixes are very unhealthy.

Real names of ingredients (often multiple ingredients) are given patented names as they sound dangerous, plus they're quite long - 1,6-dichloro-1,6-dideoxy-BETA-D-fructofuranosyl-4-chloro-4-deoxy-alpha-D-galactopyranoside for example.


Many supplement companies list ingredients however they don't list sources and don't list quantities of each ingredient. Many ingredients are sourced form numerous different suppliers, many of them from overseas where standards and/or codes and enforcement are poor.

Many state they have a proprietary blend as they have low percentages of the wanted ingredients and tons of the unwanted, or cheap ingredients used as fillers.


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I was highly irritated the other day. Sprang for a gingerale for the boy and was going to share it. Until I read the thin yellow line of wording across the container. 25% less sugar! Not that they just took it out, which would've been good, but they replaced it with sucralose. Tasted awful. Do people really think it tastes the same? NOT! Good thing I almost never buy things like that. Are they going to change everything?


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Not only does it taste different, but it's been proven to cause cancer... in large amounts, of course... but some folks really down a lot of soda.

Artificial anything scares me... no, thanks.


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Yes, that irks me - the phrase "x% less sugar" seems to always mean now that the sugar was replaced, not removed. And I refuse to buy things with those replacements. Yuk!


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I do the best I can with what is available in farmers markets and local grocery stores. I buy as much organic produce and "clean" meat as I can but I am hardly 100% perfect on that. There is just so much out there that I cannot control. It's also true that there are things I like to eat, like pretzels or ice cream, and I rarely give such indulgences a second thought!

One of my DILs is an inspector of organic farms in New England and Eastern Canada and she knows that certifying a farm is only a first step in getting what is grown there to market. She is also very active in farm-to-school food programs in Downeast Maine and knows that it's nearly impossible to make sure that everything kids eat is "healthy" but at least the food is greatly improved.


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RE: "Health" Food

  • Posted by vgkg 7-Va Tidewater (My Page) on
    Tue, Jul 23, 13 at 9:12

Our source of "Health Food" are our fruits & veggies direct from our garden, everything we buy at the stores, resturants, and even the farmers markets is questionable.


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One neat thing about the HT forum here -- seems almost all of us are avid gardeners, and it seems to me that love of food, cooking, and healthy attitudes flow from that.

I'm becoming increasingly more careful about what I eat. It helps, a lot, having things out of my own garden. No, I'm not completely "organic" by any means -- I sprayed the fruit trees with a long-acting artificial pyrethrin and with Imidan this year, because otherwise, the crop is always ruined by PC, apple maggot, and coddling moth. I use both organic and conventional fertilizers. But, my usage is far lower than a commercial production situation would use.

I still use some artificial sweeteners -- I am not really afraid of them in the big scheme of things, there are multiple risks in life, and I feel it's an acceptable one. But, there are a couple of alternative sweeteners that are "less fake" - the newest one, Nectresse, is an extract from a plant in the squash family called monkfruit, and it's a pretty good sugar substitute in drinks, etc., IMHO.

The dietician I see periodically is totally organic, against anything processed or pre-made, discourages use of any soy or gluten containing foods, etc. I wish I had her strength -- she said she completely changed her diet a number of years ago when she realized she was about 40 lbs overweight still 2 years after having her second child. She dropped the weight by a total change of diet to this new path. It's something to aspire to, but I'm far from perfect and do still eat some of the things she doesn't approve of - too much fruit, 3-4 servings a day, I use some soy products like Pasta Zero, and I do still use some processed foods, such as the time-to-time frozen meal when I just don't have time to cook.


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It comes down to reading labels very carefully, and knowing which ingredients are natural or useful, and which are dangerous or unhealthy.

I see that Yoplait has removed corn sugars from its yogurt... apparently, they received a lot of backlash from consumers, and they actually did make the product without all the previously added corn syrup products. At least, that's what the label says now.


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RE: "Health" Food

I don't know if this image will come out readable, but here's the website that I got it from.

I don't mean to come down on this particular company, but it is a MLM and it's rising fast, and a friend happens to sell it. So of course they are trying to get their friends to buy it.

I recently have been depressed, low energy, grouchy, etc. and felt it was time for an overhaul. So for week one I drank nothing but fresh veggie juice and water. Week two I added in miso broth and the protein powder I buy and other raw foods. No dairy, no meat, no sugar, no coffee. This is week three of eating really clean and I'm feeling absolutely rejuvenated (plus lost six lbs).

When I talked to my friend, he pushed his Vi shake again, and I thought I'd compare the two.... Since I can taste gums and fillers in my food, I didn't really like the sample he sent me. My raw protein powder tastes a bit like dirt but his tastes like chemicals ;)

My biggest concerns are the oil, natural and artificial colors, Sucralose, as well as being produced in a plant that may have processed shellfish (rendering void their "kosher" claim) sodium caseinate (msg) but I'm also concerned about their proprietary "blend" of "unique, concentrated and absorbable blend of proteins processed to remove fat, lactose, carbohydrates and isoflavones to provide pure, concentrated protein. When mixed with milk or soy milk, we provide 20-22 grams of protein, the right mix to burn fat and build lean muscle."

Mark, I'm especially interested in your opinion of this company as well as what you look for in your protein powders (I'm assuming you drink them) because of the lifestyle you say you live.

It really concerns me, this "shake mix that tastes like cake mix", but of course there's no way of talking my friend out of taking it, or believing the health benefits are true (it's "science-based", he told me).

I'm just so tired of fake food. The sawdust in parmesan cheese, the gums in ice cream, the 25% less sugar with replacement fakes, the "low fat"....


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Mark, I'm especially interested in your opinion of this company as well as what you look for in your protein powders (I'm assuming you drink them) because of the lifestyle you say you live.

The only protein powder I use currently is bulk unflavored New Zealand whey with no additives.

I won't buy most supplements due to the sources, process and/or because they're loaded with ingredients, chemicals, additives, flavoring, coloring, artificial sweeteners, proprietary blends etc.



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I am so down on processed "foods" that I don't wish to contribute to this thread, one basically supporting more processed food.


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Why do you think this is in support of processed food Marshall? It's actually quite the opposite (or so I intended).

The protein powder I mentioned that I drink (only by comparison to show there are other alternatives) is all raw, natural ingredients. Sometimes I have problems getting enough calories/nutrients and this is a way I supplement my intake. Mixed with fresh pressed veggie/fruit juice and I have a quick, easily digestible source of energy.

There are ways to lose weight and get nutrients without putting a bunch of oils and flavorings and fake stuff in our bodies, and that was my point... as well as my absolute horror that people are drinking this "cake-shake" and thinking they are doing their bodies good.

Thanks Mark, I appreciate the response.


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Many that have busy lifestyles and have worked long hours, long days, long weeks and/or worked in the field, on the road etc appreciate convenient sources of nutrition, even if they're somewhat of a compromise.


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That's pretty much it Mark. I don't want to go out to eat and sometimes have a hard time packing a lunch and then eating it while it still tastes good. Rather than waste food or go hungry I tote around a little jar of powder and it gets me over the hungry-hump.

Here's a breakdown of the aminos in the one I eat. There are no fillers, no artificial flavors and no synthetic ingredients and it's gluten-free and dairy-free.

Is it a "fake food" if it's just a blend of raw, real food that's been powdered? Is beef jerky real beef?


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Please explain to me how one gets to purchase concentrated protein or other supplements without the stuff having been processed first. I'll take the answer offline, so to speak.


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I get it. And I agree. I guess the term is "minimally processed".

I don't eat stuff from cans, pre-packaged, fast food, etc very often and I think the quality of nutrition is higher in my scoop of powder than a box of mac n cheese or a bowl of pasta.

Do you only eat things that haven't been processed?


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No. Today that is almost impossible unless you produce your food yourself. Even your tap water is processed. Even "fresh" vegetables found in the supermarkets are often processed (rinsed, scrubbed, waxed, bathed against spoilage (chlorine or other sterilizer), shrink wrapped with or without altered atmospheres, etc.) Very little of fresh fruits and vegetables are sold unprocessed.

Even in our small operation, we rinse off field dirt and other debris and sometimes brush roots, trim for appearance and otherwise handle the crops before packout. With some crops, like strawberries or sweet corn, we try to cool the product down so that flavor and shelf lifes will be extended.


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We are eating so good this time of year. We grilled organic chicken breasts and then had local corn, green beans , tomatoes and grilled zucchini tonight... all from our garden. It's great being a 99% vegetarian this time of year. It gets really hard in the winter. I eat NO processed food, only fresh fruit and veggies.


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By marshall's definition, anyone not eating processed food is not eating grain, even. Only local fresh fruit and veg?

I don't believe anyone is adhering to that regimen. Which reminds me, the last of my hand-harvested wheat is sprouting in the fridge. I'd best finish it. A discovery recently is that fresh wheat soaked and allowed to sprout for a while does not need cooking. Makes a real nice salad base.


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Minimal processing doesn't concern me.

Most food sources have numerous processes involved in production, harvest and bringing them to market unless you eat wild fruits, nuts, veggies, fish and game.

What I try to avoid is poor, unknown and untrusted sources, plus added ingredients.

Just one example (One of the favorites of some kids our daughters babysit)

"Healthy Choice Salisbury Steak Meal

Salisbury Steak Patty: Beef, Water, Pork, Textured Soy Protein (Soy Protein, Soy Carbohydrate, Caramel Color), Seasoning (Dehydrated Onion, Garlic Powder, Hydrolyzed Corn Gluten, Soy Protein and Wheat Gluten, Yeast Extract, Caramel Color, Natural Flavor, Worcestershire Sauce Powder [Worcestershire Sauce [Distilled Vinegar, Molasses, Corn Syrup, Salt, Caramel Color, Garlic Powder, Sugar, Spices, Tamarind, Natural Flavor], Natural Flavor], Maltodextrin), Beef Flavor, [Contains Beef Fat, Beef Extract, Salt, Autolyzed Yeast Extract], Spice, Potassium Chloride, Dextrose, Maltodextrin, Modified Corn Starch, Butter Powder (Butter [Cream, Salt], Nonfat Milk, Sodium Caseinate), Citric Acid, Gum Arabic, Gelatin, Silicon Dioxide), Contains Sulfites, Potato Starch (Water, Modified Food Starch), Rolled Oats, Water, Red Skin Potatoes: Roasted Red Potatoes, Canola Oil, Salt, Maltodextrin, Wheat Starch, Dehydrated Onion, Sugar, Red Bell Pepper, Corn Starch, Parsley, Paprika, Spices, Natural Flavor, Caramel Color, Garlic, Turmeric Extract, Annatto Extract, Citric Acid, Apples, Green Beans, Corn, Carrots, Brown Sugar, Mushrooms, Oatmeal Topping: Rolled Oats, Sugar, High Fructose Corn Syrup Sugar, Soybean Oil, Honey, Brown Sugar, Molasses, Modified Food Starch, Beef Extract, Nonfat Dry Milk, Garlic, Salt, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Autolyzed Yeast Extract, Edible Beef Fat, Wheat Flour, Dried Whey, High Fructose Corn Syrup and Corn Syrup, Sugar, Dried Cream, Caramel Color (Contains Egg), Locust Bean Gum, Black Pepper, Maltodextrin, Mono- and Diglycerides and Datem, Propylene Glycol, Ethyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 80, Vitamin A Palmitate, Lactic Acid, Carrot Extract, Soybean Oil, Citric Acid, Vitamin D3, Sodium Caseinate, Silicon Dioxide."


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Pat, I believe sprouting the grain is called malting and is effective in reducing gluten content, converting the protein to sugars and other carbs.

I'm not an advocate of raw food diets or diets limited to fruits and vegetables. In fact, I don't spend a lot of time worrying about what I eat, other than to avoid vanilla ice cream and blueberry muffins. :) I do try to avoid eating processed food with a long list of ingredients, such as what Mark posted. I'm also in the habit of eating one item at a time, or for example, meat at one sitting, vegetables at another meal. This old body sometimes struggles with ingesting complex meals made up a large range of food groups.


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I have to wonder how much of the chemical content from the plastics and adhesives in microwave dinner packaging ends up in the food.

The water many consume is quite unhealthy as well.

We try to avoid food products from China - fish, apples, oranges, pears etc. The appearance and condition of much of the packaging alone is pretty scary - discolored plastics, labeling, rusting cans, unknown foreign matter in the packaging etc.

Many of our relatives consume a lot of products from China as they're cheap or convenient.


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Marshall, maybe I misunderstood you.... I get the protein from the powder I drink from over a dozen sprouted seeds and grains. It contains live probiotics, it's raw, vegan, organic, untreated, unadulterated, no synthetics.

If as you say nearly all foods are processed, can you tell me what issue you take with this powdered food or others like it? I totally understand it doesn't replace fruits/veggies/"real" food but I really feel it is beneficial to my health considering my lifestyle/schedule.

Mark, that "healthy choice" reads as anything but healthy! But where on Earth are you shopping that sells food that has "..discolored plastics, labeling, rusting cans, unknown foreign matter in the packaging"?!?


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Mark, that "healthy choice" reads as anything but healthy! But where on Earth are you shopping that sells food that has "..discolored plastics, labeling, rusting cans, unknown foreign matter in the packaging"?!?

Our relatives buy these products in the deep discount stores that carry many really strange brands.

For example, some bought a bunch of canned pears form China recently with stained/faded labels, rust on the lips of cans, sharp edges on cans etc.
This didn't appear to be a storage/exposure issue, just a quality control issue.

They also purchased a bunch of Tilapia from China with all sorts of specs of unknown matter in the packaging.

One of our commercial suppliers gave us some samples of canned pear, orange and apple products from China with cans with non hemmed edges so sharp that they could cut your hands, plus several of our can openers wouldn't open them correctly. The cans were discolored as well with random dark spots.


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Mark, do your relatives really understand what they are consuming when eating that stuff? That Tilapia sounds gross and disgusting and flat dangerous to their health. I thought it would be illegal to sell some of the stuff due to simple appearance if nothing else - like those unhemmed edges on cans that could slice into skin.

Is this stuff from those dollar stores you were telling me about, I have not yet stopped to take a look in one but they certainly seem popular according to their parking situation. I must stop in one and walk around a bit, Im very curious to see what is on the shelves.


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mylab, yes, they understand, however it doesn't seem to phase them as long as it's cheap or convenient. They also consume a lot of long expired and/or damaged food products from the free food distribution services.

Most of the canned goods they consume are from dollar stores, deep discount grocery stores, mom and pop convenience stores and free food distrubution services.

Many of these places deal in a lot of closeouts, discontinued, nearly expired and really odball brands of food products.

Speaking of cans many non standard cans also leave sharp jagged metal edges and/or filings as many can openers won't open them properly.


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I would have to guess that when poverty is deep and prolonged, worry about where a food product came from or how it is packaged takes far less importance than having enough of it so everyone isnt hungry all the time.
A hierarchy of needs must come into play at some point, I suppose. Im grateful that such choices have never been on my plate, so to speak.


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I'm not a Dollar Store aficianado, but they serve a purpose. The few times I've ventured in was to pick up a few cleaning supplies - and they do carry name brands like Windex, Spic & Span, Ajax.

But a wander in the food aisles finds canned goods from "Parts Unknown" (even in China). People have no fear filling up carts with the stuff. I'd be afraid of botulism for sure. Cheap cookies, crackers, snacks, candies.

The stores are an adventure, especially at holiday times when they're absolutely more jammed than usual. Barrels of wrapping paper which, of course, gives way when wrapping a box with a corner. They have the usual compliment of gift items - candles, knock off Hummels, Snow Babies, table top bric-a-brac, stocking stuffers for kids. Be very wary of cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.

When the economy is tight, these stores are a lifeline for many.

See a list at the link

Here is a link that might be useful: Be fraid be very afraid

This post was edited by duluthinbloomz4 on Wed, Jul 24, 13 at 13:42


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I buy from the dollar store all the time...birthday balloons, cleaning products, wrapping paper, but I would never buy any thing to be consumed internally. Heck, I won't buy my dogs bones unless they are made in USA.


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That's another issue with many dollar stores - chemicals and other nasty smelling products are frequently stored right next to food items.

The paint an plastics emissions from many products made in China can be overwhelming.

You have to leave many things outdoors and let them air out for days before the China Stink becomes more tolerable.


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Oh, I've been in dollar stores, but never noticed it being that nasty. Maybe S. California is a little different than the east coast. I'm surprised by you trying to open those cans... curious of what was inside?

My cousin had a big bowl of pears at her house a while back. I was hungry and helped myself to one, exclaiming about how wonderful they looked and how she had so many.

They tasted like cardboard... and she got them at the dollar store.... I didn't realize prior to then that one can purchase fresh foods there.


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I'm surprised by you trying to open those cans... curious of what was inside?

They were samples from a supplier that wanted us to sell and distribute the products.

The fruit looked and smelled as good as any other fruits canned and packed in syrup, however the price wasn't much different than U.S. products.

Maybe S. California is a little different than the east coast.

There's a major difference in products, displays, organization and cleanliness between stores and regions.

Some stores are poorly managed, understaffed and have poor performing workers so they're in rough shape.

Minutes away other stores are clean, organized and the staff is fast and friendly.


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I never saw the stores as "nasty". But I don't go often - maybe once or twice a year. On those occasions, the store has always been well lit, clean, picked up, shelves stocked , clerks friendly. It's basically the foodstuffs and personal products I'd take issue with. Both here and in Maryland, the stores tended to be small, the aises congested with shoppers, and like everywhere - customers all seem to head for the checkout at the same time.

The places are no frills with merchandise from the world's best sweatshops; a splendorama of French named colognes like "Le Miguet" but all smelling like diesel.

Mylab, you really should visit one - and for no other reason than the experience and that Dollar Generals, Dollar Trees, etc. are probably some of the fastest growing retail outfits on the continent. (If you do, don't buy batteries, I've read those are reliably duds.)


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Healthy food comes from my garden or a friendly meat processor who hooks me up with venison or wild hog.
Paper plates, toilet tissue and bleach come from the Dollar Store - Clorox is Clorox no matter who sells it.


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Dollar stores: we have two, right across the street from each other - Dollar General and Family Dollar. Both are clean, well-lit, well-organized, and the staff is friendly and helpful.

But that description fits every business of every kind in this town. Otherwise, no one would patronize them.


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Silversword, I am not faulting your choice of the super-protein concoction. I once was engaged to a woman whose diet consisted of such protein concentrates, lots of vitamins and grapefruit. I kid you not. If you thrive on your special food choices, good. Unfortunately there are a lot of questionable concoctions with prices attractive enough to draw people into adding high-protein (and often high carb) snacks and pick-me-uppers.

My son, who is very overweight, goes through these in quantities even after I showed him that he was consuming an extra 2000 calories a day. So now he is into energy drinks, delivering even a higher caloric intake.

I am not a happy traveler on this subject.


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The battery thing is true. They don't last. I think my store is the Dollar Store although we have differently named ones. Dollar General has items more than a dollar. Ours is clean and has a wide variety. It's right beside my gym, but I only stop every few weeks. Kids go there and buy cheap candy to take next door to the movies.


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Dollar stores: we have two, right across the street from each other - Dollar General and Family Dollar. Both are clean, well-lit, well-organized, and the staff is friendly and helpful.

But that description fits every business of every kind in this town. Otherwise, no one would patronize them.

One of our employees worked at a Dollar General that's under-staffed, unorganized, poorly managed etc.

They have frequent walk-outs as they never have more than one register open, they're under-staffed and the few workers have multiple duties - cashiers, baggers, cart wranglers, stockers, cleaners etc.

Despite these things they do a very good business as they have a premium high traffic location, plenty of anchor businesses and they've recently started selling cigarettes.

They were losing a lot of business to convenience stores, grocery stores, larger discount stores and drug stores as they didn't sell cigarettes.

Our employee was the only non-management worker that worked there for more than 3 months, so they tend to have many inexperienced and slow workers.

When we shop there we often see new faces on a weekly basis. Many end up working for Walmart across the road as they pay better, offer more hours, full-time work, chance for promotion and have better working conditions.

We shop Dollar General less and less as their prices aren't competitive, their selection is poor and they've cut promotions substantially.

We used to shop there weekly as they had one day only $10 off on $30 promotions printed on our receipts.


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I had a very healthy breakfast today. Snared down some leftover FR O broiled chicken breast leftover from dinner and 2 HB eggs (from the store, alas) prior to my early am 15 miles on the bike. Got back, had just enough time to wander out in the dew-coated garden, at 48 degrees, and snarf down some sweet little sungold tomatoes, a cuke, a pepper, couple of handfuls of the last of the black raspberries, and a small, almost ripe William's Pride apple.

I love having my own produce, it certainly contributes to a healthy diet.


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That sounds wonderful Denn! I drank a mug of hot water on my way to yoga, then ate two eggs scrambled and a piece of thin sunflower european style bread and a cup of tea. Later a glass of the ginger, carrot, apple, mango, celery, parsley, zucchini, cucumber concoction I juiced this morning and then a blended protein powder and almond milk for a mini snack. Looking forward to lunch!

Marshall, I'm in total agreement, that's my point!!! People replacing real foods with chemical ingredients. I assure you that's not what I'm doing, I'm just trying to get more nutrients in an easy snack with the powder, like the juicing.

My friend has his 11 year old drinking the powder "cake shake" as well. SMH -


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