I took my wife out on a sun-downer date at a popular venue in Lusaka like I usually do (ichupo chisuma)😎. She promptly ordered room temperature water and was thrilled to receive branded ‘alkaline water’. Her excitement surprised me and when I inquired about it she said “Ah babe, it’s healthy!” She wasn’t willing to say much more than that and I realized something 🤔💡most people are attracted to labels they don’t fully understand 👉🏾Alkaline water! Sugar free! 100% natural! Gluten free! Organic! Do you understand what you’re paying for when you insist on these things in the shops and restaurants you frequent? My default assumption is no, and because I choose to believe that you don’t know I’ll break it down for you.
First things first, alkaline water. The hype behind these products comes from claims that its high alkaline content acts as a neutralizer to the acids formulated in your body. Typical drinking water has a pH of 7 (neutral), while alkaline water has a pH of 8-9. I won't explain pH but feel free to peruse your children's chemistry books in your own time. For now just know that pH is a scale from 1 to 14 that measures the acidity or alkalinity of a liquid - anything with a pH below 7 is an acid, and anything with a pH above 7 is an alkali . This is where Alkaline water advocates look to hype up the product, and because the stomach is a naturally acidic environment they claim Alkaline water can be used to counteract this and protect you from things such as tooth decay, adverse bone health as well as delaying the aging process among other things.
Verdict: More hype than anything; ni vi manzi chabe. Just drink the same water your grandparents have been drinking. They lived long and aged just fine on ordinary water.
Two things to note here: First, as long as a product contains less than a gram of sugar per serving then they can claim it is sugar free on the label. Second, sugar free is the absence of your typical white spoon sugar but it is often replaced with artificial sweeteners (check the ingredients label for things such as sucralose, maltodextrin, aspartame, saccharin if you want to know whether you're being played) to help maintain the sweet taste we've all come to love.
Verdict: Does it taste sweet? There’s sugar in it😔or some form of an artificial sweetener to help give it a sweet taste. This isn't a healthy alternative so don't fall for marketing tricks. Clean up your nutrition in general before you mislead yourself into believing that sugar free biscuits for breakfast is okay.
100% this, 100% that 🍊 🍎 🍍 🥤
100% fruit juice? Partially true. They probably did use real fruit, the problem is it's not just fruit in there. There's other things (mostly sugar and artificial sweeteners) that are added to enhance the taste and keep you buying the product because 'hey! It tastes good and it's healthy!'. It's likely not. My advice? Buy a blender and make your own 100% fruit juice. Ever noticed that the one you buy in the shop and the one you make yourself tastes different? Ever wonder why?
Verdict: If you buy it then it's because you just want juice, not because you want to be healthy because at the end of the day if you didn't squeeze those oranges yourself then the words 'pure', or '100% fruit' shouldn't entice you.
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye and barley. For some people gluten causes digestive issues such bloating and in extreme cases damage to the intestinal lining (celiac disease). The gluten free products seek to address these issues.
Common products that contain gluten are beer, bread, pasta, baked goods, and cereals 🍺🍞 🥯 🧁 🥣
Verdict: Unless you've been medically diagnosed with celiac disease or experience serious discomfort after eating gluten containing foods, ukazidya chabe. You've been raised on bread so you can't now start claiming it's creating problems outside of your belly expanding. Some (or most) of you consume beer🍻, have you looked at the ingredients? Don't act boujee mu ma shop na ma restaurant when you know that your African stomach can handle anything.
Organic 🍗 🥚 🍖 🐟
Organic means the food or animal has been grown without the use of artificial chemicals, synthetic fertilizers, hormones, antibiotics or genetically modified organisms. This unadulterated form of food leads to higher nutritional value.
Common organic foods come in forms of fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy products and meat.
Verdict: Worth the purchase for your fruits, vegetables, meats, eggs, poultry and fish. You'll reduce your exposure to artificial chemicals and antibiotics and improve your health through improved nutritional value from the foods you eat.
NB: If it hasn't been certified as organic don't bother with the product.
I hope this all helps you make better decisions. Don't enter shops and restaurants mungulu mungulu paying over the top for products that do more for your psychology than actual health.
4/11/2021 11:30:45 pm
Now I know better 😬 and will do better . A very informative blog
4/12/2021 12:53:42 pm
Ms. Alkaline Water😂 I sincerely hope so!
Mweene JJ Kabunda
4/11/2021 11:34:28 pm
This is a great article bwana.....information that a lot of people need to know.....people are eating healthy supposedly but gaining weight without understanding why
4/12/2021 12:57:43 pm
4/12/2021 01:27:08 am
Well nicely articulated article so manje manzi yali ones nikumwa chabe?
4/12/2021 01:00:32 pm
Nikumwa chabe mudala! We’ve grown up drinking this same water. Our parents and grandparents have all been drinking this same water. Ni vi manzi chabe.
4/12/2021 03:08:15 am
Tanvela bwana. Zikomo, this was a very informative article. Nika yamba ku shushana nabantu bamene bafuna ku nkala bougie vaboza pa budget yanga, we shall remind and continue to refer them here!
4/12/2021 01:05:09 pm
😂😂😂mwati ni boza😂 bantu ba sanka vintu va ma label when they’re not the ones footing the bill. Kulibe ku ku meka ku ma restaurant, ba passe che blog iyi.
4/13/2021 05:03:17 am
Yaba...change if mindset for sure. Substance over form!
4/13/2021 08:46:37 am
Substance over form indeed! We shouldn't be swayed by food labels unless we understand them.
4/18/2021 07:02:47 am
Interesting.... I'd like to hear your take on following Blood group diet. You should write a blog on that
4/18/2021 11:37:43 pm
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ISSA Certified Fitness Trainer & Nutritionist