Tag Archives: Fruit

Dried Fruit Candy from 7-Eleven

One day I’m going to do an entire 7-Eleven appreciation post. I love that damn store. But I’m a realist and I don’t love everything they do.

Like this sweetened, dried fruit medley:

Let’s get this part out of the way right now: Yes, it is tasty!

But there are also 17 grams of sugar. Sugar is not good for us. But it’s addicting, and tasty, and stimulates that part in the brain that says “ahhh yess. Just one more.”

Sugar is in most of the foods available in the store. When I’m seen in the store, the number one thing I check the nutrition label for is … the sugar content.

Most of the time, after checking it, the product is back on the shelf before I think to check if there is milk or gelatin in it. That’s because the astronomical amount of sugar added literally stops me in my tracks.

One more thing about sugar grams, (& I’ll get back on topic track ASAP) but notice on the nutrition labels they don’t tell us how much of the daily value we’re consuming. That’s because we’d all be dismayed to discover we ate 2 fancy donuts and it put us over the daily limit.

The Nutrition Label.

So there are a couple things we need to discuss.

We can look and say “17 grams, that’s not bad.” But before it’s officially “not bad,” take a look at the top where the serving size is indicated.

There are 4.5 servings in one bag.

If someone were to enjoy one serving a day, this should last the entire work week.

But, sadly, and yes it is sad, this decent sized bag probably wouldn’t last more than 3 days.

The honest truth is that consuming an entire bag of these would supply your body with over 70 grams of sugar.

That’s just crazy. Especially because this is a snack food and you are pretty much guaranteed to be eating more food with added sugar later on.

Many people may be fooled into thinking these are healthy when it’s just as bad as a Snickers bar.

Now, what about the sugar that occurs naturally in fruit? How much of the 17 sugar grams comes from fruit? I would really like to know.

However, as the amazing resource that 7-Eleven is, they do have much healthier dried fruit options that do not have added sugar 💛 I’ve seen mango and pineapple so far! However, before we switch food products, I have one more bone to pick with these:

Look at that green fruit in the package preview window. Now, scroll back up and look at the ingredients. If that’s too much, I’ll jump right to the point:

There are no green fruits in the ingredients:

Pineapple & star fruit are yellow 🍍

Papaya & mango are orange (and sooooo delicious😋)

Cantaloupe is also orange, but there’s a loophole here as there is a green variety of cantaloupe. But it’s usually called by its name, Honeydew melon. And also, it’s fruity parts are light green.

The added yellow #5 and blue #1 make the color green. Oh no, artificial ingredients.

Look, enjoy this as a snack if you must. Consider it real fruit candy But keep in mind a real serving is like 5/6 pieces.

The 100% natural, no sugar added dried fruit is different.

We can tell that this one doesn’t have much added to it. On the package they say the whole pineapple was dried, then they sliced and packaged it.

It tastes good but it’s not pretty. That is, if you want a vibrant yellow pineapple ring, it does not look like that.

Of course, it is still beautiful in its own way.

The sugar content of these claims to be 14g per package. At least we know with this, the sugar comes from the fruit.

Give it a try and let me know what you think 🙂

Plant-Based Coke

Can we talk about something unwholesome metaphorically?

Yes drugs are bad, don’t worry. But just because something comes from a plant doesn’t make it healthy.

The reasons why that’s true are a long list. Some of those reasons are subtle but sometimes it’s for a big, obvious reasons.

By name alone, we know that coke is not something that should be done. It has a big reputation of being bad for your health. Do not do drugs.

Speaking of drugs, it seems like the worst ones are mostly chemical looking and really processed. The more processed something is, the worse it usually is for your health. Especially when you can’t read the ingredients.

It’s a risky situation. You have a right to know what you’re getting. No thank you for mystery ingredients.

Stepped on coke is when people add a lot of inorganic material to the drug to make it stretch further. In the agriculture world, they step on the food growing with pesticides for the same reason: so that the food will last longer.

That wouldn’t be a bad thing if organic sources were used but no – lots of commercial farms use nasty chemicals that have been known to cause cancer.

Pesticides are bad. They make the food not as healthy and nourishing as it can be.

Back on topic, plant-based coke is an illicit illegal drug for lots of reasons. Technically, it comes from a plant called the coca tree. Sometimes the workers chew on the leaves as they harvest it.

But we will never see an agriculture worker tasting the process of spraying pesticides. It’s the opposite for them; they have to wear protective suits and masks.

So it looks like, with produce, the bad pesticide stuff happens before it’s picked. And then with cocaine, the bad energy begins when the plant base is picked.

Chemicals, no matter how small the amount may seem, will accumulate in the body for years and years.

Plant-based food items that have bad ingredients are sort of the same. Eating lots of sugary foods may give you a bad feeling. Bad habits and addictions have a way of showing up in ways that you don’t want to deal with in life.

Truth be told, this is a whole rabbit hole that is a little boring to discuss. BUT more than that, it is important to remind others that just because something is available does not mean that you should have it.

Consider this: junk food is a drug. That’s why we eat so many at one time. The taste of sugar, fat, and chemicals all make a very pleasant combination that you want to eat more and more of.

One reason why cocaine is so detrimental is the tendency users have to become addicted.

Studies show that white sugar is just as addicting as cocaine, but why is nobody talking about it?

There is a lot to go on and on about here.

Obviously coke is not the only plant-based drug. At one time, all drugs were plant-based. And then as science progressed, the smart people at the time figured out the chemical compounds inside the plants that make them effective. After that, instead of using plants still, they learned how to create the chemical without the extra plant matter.

Prescription drugs are stronger than herbal supplements for that reason. They’re also harmful, for different reasons – health and non-health.

Chemicals in our lives are nearly impossible to avoid all together. But when you know what’s bad for your health then you can try to avoid it.

This article on if plants can be used as drugs proposes that the lighter your body is, the more a person will be able to feel the effects from quality sourced herbs. Check it out.

Thanks for reading.

Tomatillos!

These fruits (or are they vegetables?) were a first time buy for me. Like many, I often saw tomatillos in the produce section and passed by without a second thought. Well, today I gave it that second thought. They were on sale for $.99 cent a pound!

A stranger saw me randomly choosing some of these golf-ball shaped Earth foods and he had something to say.

“I’ve only seen 2 people buying these,” he said. “Me and you.”

I replied, “Well, that’s interesting because this is my first time!”

He was surprised and immediately began to give me cooking tips. Namely, he told me to roast them. Roast until the skins get “real black” then peel it off and add to chili.

I thanked him for the suggestion. Because I probably would have eaten it raw.

At the word raw, he made a scrunched-up face.

“Nah, dont do that,” he said. “They’re not very good that way.”

“One more thing, sir.” I thought I’d better ask an important question while in the midst of an experienced tomatillo eater. “How do you know when they’re ripe?”

His reply made us both laugh.

“They’re always ready.”

It was cool to meet that guy.

They smell like grass.

Of course, I ate some raw when I got home.

It tastes like sour citrus at first, then a grassy flavor comes through as well.

I like it. They’re a member of the nightshade family, which would explain the green tomato appearance.

I don’t make chili very often so I won’t be taking that guys suggestion. But this roasted tomatillo salsa looks tasty, yeah?

Thanks for reading.

Pears

Oh, how I love pears; let me count the ways :

  1. They’re so juicy!
  2. No peeling necessary
  3. Variety of textures
  4. A colorful selection

Here are the top three found in the grocery store:

Red pears are SWEET but be careful, they’ll get mushy if they’re over ripe.

Bosc Pears are a favorite to many.. check the neck to see if it’s ripe (or smell it). Mmmmm.

D’anjou pears are fun to say and they’re just as delicious as the others.

When checking for ripeness, it’s easy! When they’re soft, they’re ready.

Melons

The original idea for this essay covered only cantaloupes and honeydew melons. There was a back and forth battle about whether or not to include watermelons, seeing as they are a little different.

In my biased opinion, seeded watermelons reign supreme over all others.

All melons mentioned in this body of work share the similarity of having a high water content and an abundance of seeds. That’s why they are perfect for eating in the summer time! The flavor of the melon depends on the variety that you’re getting.

They are usually affordable too, especially when bought in season. Cantaloupes can be found abundantly in most pre-made fruit salads. Honeydews also, just to a lesser degree. Are you cool with that?

If you’re buying cantaloupes, follow the smell. You will not have to hunt to find a ripe cantaloupe, the fragrance will find your nose.

If you’re buying a honeydew, buy one that is blemish free with no soft spots.

If you’re buying a watermelon, get one with seeds. Among other things, the ones with seeds usually tend to be the sweetest. Also, if you’re looking for a sweet watermelon, get one with a yellow patch on it so you can kind of see how it sat in the dirt for a while as it grew.

Watermelons are so cool. Such a big fruit filled with water and it all comes from 1 seed.

watermelon
Nice yellow patch on this one. Yes, it was sweet.

 

Cucumbers

Crunchy, long, and green. That’s a cucumber for you. They are sold as whole produce in the grocery store. Baby cucumbers are also a thing, although finding them fresh can be tough given the fact that small cucumbers are also made into pickles.
If this essay included gardening tips, I would point out that small cucumbers are ideal for eating. The advice that follows would be to harvest them before they grow as big as the ones in the grocery store. Why? Personal preference, mainly… Big cucumbers should be at least partially peeled before serving, if only for a more enjoyable eating experience.

Choosing a cucumber:

Look for cucumbers that are evenly sized and have smooth skin.
Absolutely NO: fragrance/odor. Also avoid soft or wrinkly cucumbers because they’re probably old.

English Cucumbers

There are the long, narrow cucumbers that come shrink wrapped in plastic. The environmental sin can almost be forgiven because of the convenience of working with this variety. The outer skin of these are thinner and does not require peeling. They usually cost more too (probably to cover the cost of the excess plastic.)