If it’s not pharmaceutical drugs being advertised on TV, it’s natural supplements being pushed in health magazines. If you want to feel old and rundown, watch Jeopardy or Wheel of Fortune and take note of the advertising. Everything from cholesterol lowering drugs to denture paste to laxatives to viagra. It’s not much better in the magazine world. Unfortunately, that says something about our general state of health in this country.
“A rich source of fiber,” grapefruit pectin “may help maintain cholesterol levels already in the normal range.” All that for only $31.98 a bottle. Hmmm? Let me get this straight. You can keep your “already normal” cholesterol levels “normal” by taking grapefruit pectin supplements.
Here’s an idea. How about we skip the supplements and eat real grapefruit?
I’ll admit, I’ve fallen for some less-than-good-for-me health food claims in the past (of all things, wheat germ) and I do take a few supplements from time to time, but my gosh, we’re getting bombarded with over-the-top health claims these days. What’s true and what isn’t?
The US Food and Drug Administration recently put the smack down on General Mills for claiming that Cheerios have been “clinically proven to lower cholesterol.” Oops, the FDA says those words classify Cheerios as a drug since the intent is to prevent or treat disease and as such, they need to go through the “approved new drug application” process.
If you can’t believe in Cheerios to lower cholesterol, can you believe in grapefruit pectin? Maybe, maybe not. I believe in the healing and medicinal properties of whole foods, but I’m not buying into advertising claims applied to food that comes in a box.
I’m also not buying into the pectin supplement claims, but I am a huge fan of fiber and just in case the pectin can work some magic somewhere in my body, I leave as much of it on my citrus fruit as possible. See above for pectin-saving peel photo. I use a small paring knife and keep as much of the fibrous membrane on as possible.
3 cups mixed greens
1 grapefruit, peeled (minimally), seeded and sectioned
1 avocado, sliced
1/2 cup pecans *
crumbled goat cheese
All purpose salad dressing (this is my default salad dressing)
2 tablespoons Annie’s Naturals organic Dijon Mustard
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons honey (or less if you don’t like sweet dressings)
Start with the mustard and place all ingredients in a small jar. Shake vigorously. If you start with the mustard, it won’t separate. Use as needed for any salad.
Assemble salad, sprinkle with pecans and goat cheese, drizzle with dressing and enjoy.
* I like toasting my pecans in a dry skillet on medium/low for 3 to 5 minutes to bring out the flavor.
Go forth and eat whole foods, pectin and all.