Dot to Trot

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Protein — The New Marketing Buzz Word

The new food marketing gimmick -- protein! Just ignore the packaging and actually eat some meat. Your body will thank you.

The new food marketing gimmick — protein! Just ignore the packaging and actually eat some meat. Your body will thank you.

Well the new food marketing buzz word is “protein.” I’m seeing it everywhere. Ugh! I pretty much ignored the “fiber” and “gluten-free” craze, but this is just outright annoying. When I saw a box of Cheerios Protein on my grocery store shelf, I lost it. At first I rolled my eyes, then bust out laughing, and finally I ended up ticked off.

Wall Street Journal (subscription required) writes about this latest marketing gimmick. You see the word “protein” has the “halo effect.” We all understand we need protein. It’s good for you.

Food companies know you need protein. So they simply add some protein, repackage their crappy products with the word “protein” prominently displayed and bingo!  People lap it up.

And guess what? We fall for this over and over again. If the box says protein, we assume it is not only healthy for us, but gives us energy and feel satisfied.

Cheerios Protein lists 40g of carbs per serving.  You are much better off eating 4 ounces of chicken, beef, lamb or pork than this processed junk.

Cheerios Protein lists 40g of carbs per serving. You are much better off eating 4 ounces of chicken, beef, lamb or pork than this processed junk.

Of course, when you actually read the label on your box of Cheerios Protein, you’ll discover that your eating 40g of carbs, 16g of sugar and 21g of mystery carbs in a one cup serving.  Yikes! That is a big insulin spike coming your way. But hey, your getting 7g of protein. Wow!

Yet, if you eat 4 ounces of chicken, you get 35g of protein, zero carbs, and no major spike in the fat-storing hormone (a.k.a. insulin). Seems like eating meat is a smarter health choice than eating protein “spiked” processed garbage.

 

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