Gut Re­ac­tion

Moose Jaw - - Front Page -

I used to be that gut re­ac­tion guy, the guy who would quickly re­spond to a sit­u­a­tion with lit­tle or no fore­thought at all and I have paid the price, usu­ally in the penalty box. Over the years and years of sit­ting in the penalty box con­tem­plat­ing my mis­deeds and in­stant re­sponses, I hope I am learn­ing to keep my tem­per and make an hon­est as­sess­ment of sit­u­a­tions…be­fore I snap! It is part of my never-end­ing quest for self-im­prove­ment and when I lose the abil­ity to re­main cool and calm, I know in my heart there must be a rea­son. At this mo­ment in time, my out­rage far ex­ceeds my quest for self-im­prove­ment through calm­ness and seren­ity. I will share the rea­son for my ex­treme anger. “They” are chang­ing the for­mula for one of my and many oth­ers’ most pop­u­lar foods in the his­tory of Canada…Kraft Din­ner! It was only a few years ago that I first heard that KD (Kraft Din­ner) was go­ing to mess with a sta­ple food that is lit­er­ally in 99% of the pantries in Canada. In the case of KD, the “one per­centers” are those that do not KD and not the elite rich “one per­cent” of our so­ci­ety who prob­a­bly still eat KD. Just like in the Bare­naked Ladies’ hit song “If I had a $1000000,” the elite rich one per­centers eat more KD with fancy ketchups and mus­tards. KD is as ba­sic a food as you can get, how­ever it is a man­u­fac­tured food, with only 10 in­gre­di­ents - one of which is #5 orange food dye or tar­trazine. This is the in­gre­di­ent that gives KD its dis­tinc­tive bright neon orange “cheesy” ap­pear­ance and prob­a­bly some imag­ined cheese flavour, as well. Why would any­one want to mess with the tra­di­tion of cheap fast home pre­pared meals that is so eas­ily pre­pared that even a guy like me can cook? Al­though, af­ter more than half a cen­tury of KDing, I still read the in­struc­tions on the side of the box. You never know when things will change. Well, things are go­ing to change Jan­uary 1, 2016 as the man­u­fac­tur­ers of KD re­spond to an on­line pe­ti­tion of more than 365,000 sig­na­tures call­ing for the re­place­ment of #5 orange dye (which is an edi­ble petroleum prod­uct) from KD. The #5 neon orange dye will be re­placed with a com­bi­na­tion of nat­u­ral herbs and spices like pa­prika, an­natto and turmeric which will sat­isfy the pe­ti­tion sign­ers, but will it sat­isfy the KD con­nois­seurs of the world like my­self? Will the recipe that has stood the taste…er…test of time, for at least 80 years, con­tinue to al­low peo­ple to make and eat a hot pasta meal in less than 10 min­utes? For pen­nies? I hope so be­cause if not, there will be a gi­gan­tic ex­o­dus of col­lege stu­dents and other fru­gal fans of the bright orange pasta to an­other neon food like …cheezies! Oh wait a minute, they are chang­ing the colour­ing agent in cheezies, as well! Two of my favourite food groups are sud­denly be­com­ing health­ier and of course I won­der it that will af­fect my health. Could a guy with 60 odd years of eat­ing bright orange foods laced with #5 dye, made from edi­ble petroleum by-prod­ucts, take the strain of eat­ing health­ier? I don’t think #5 dye has had any ef­fect on me, or has it? The smar­ty­pantsknow­itall­guys have the sci­ence to show that this #5 food­colour­ing or tar­trazine is linked to al­ler­gies…”ah­choo”, hy­per­ac­tiv­ity and the in­abil­ity to con­cen­trate…er…”what was I say­ing?”, some can­cers and pos­si­bly some psy­cho­log­i­cal ef­fects as well which just makes me crazy! My #5 neon orange food colour­ing laden body will need to be weaned from tar­trazine and I won­der if there are pro­grams for me and my fel­low KDers avail­able to get us hooked…er… con­di­tioned to the re­place­ment healthy food colour­ing? I just had a hor­ri­ble thought; I be­gan to worry about other foods that could be us­ing this food dye that is banned in many Euro­pean coun­tries. My fears had been con­firmed when I dis­cov­ered that #5 dye is used in many of my other fa­vorite food groups such as candy corn, jelly beans, jams and jel­lies and even the food I feed my dog. I guess I will have to in­clude be­com­ing more aware of what is in the man­u­fac­tured foods I eat as part of my eter­nal search for self-im­prove­ment… or I could just eat my fa­vorite foods and not read the boxes, but that would be a gut re­ac­tion!

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