Friday, March 13, 2015

GMO-Free Girl - Rachel Parent

Not long ago I was introduced to the GMO-Free Girl. Not in real life unfortunately, but somehow, before 6-months ago, I had never heard of her.  If you have never heard of her, well, let me introduce you to Canada's very own Rachel Parent - 15 year old , amazing environmental campaigner. 



At just 12 years old she completed a school project on GMOs that launched this young woman on a journey to educate the world about our right to know what is in our food, and the impact of GMOs on our planet, our health, our ecosystems and our future. She won an award for this speech and since then has many applaudable achievements including:



Rachel's accomplishments are so much more numerous than this.   If this is what she has accomplished by the age of 15, I can not wait to see what she is able to accomplish in the years to come.  This girl is going places! 

So now lets talk a little about GMOs. GMO stands for Genetically Modified Organism.  Doesn't sound scary, right? Keep reading and see if you feel the same way.  Genetically modifying food is the process by which scientists alter the genes of plants or animals with the DNA from different species of living organisms, bacteria, or viruses.  Still sound normal, or safe?  Keep reading. 

Source: http://www.kidsrighttoknow.com/gmos/


GMOs were introduced to increase crop yields, by creating plants that were more pesticide and herbicide resistant. Yeah!? No, not really so great.  Here's some more scary info I got from David Suzuki's site (www.davidsuzuki.org/what-you-can-do/queen-of-green/faqs/food/understandin-gmo/) that helped me form this decision:  apparently, the companies that develop and patent GMO seeds are the same companies that develop and patent the pesticides and herbicides these seeds have been modified to be more resistant to (i.e. Monsanto is the seed company and is also the parent company of the pesticide company Roundup).  So, the seeds are modified to withstand increased levels chemical application on the crops.  

In my opinion, you can wash your vegetables all you want, but you will never be able wash off all the chemicals that have been applied to them.  You see, the skin of our fruits and vegetables are much like our skin. They are permeable and therefore absorb what is applied to it. Not only that, the roots of the plant absorb the chemicals from the soil that they grow in.  Think about how a white carnation placed in coloured water absorbs the colour from the water right to the tips of the petals.  Our fruits and vegetables are no different - they absorb what is in the ground they are planted in. 

So are there risks to GMOs? Are they safe?  Many groups and people feel that they are not.  This is not surprising to me.  According to Mercola.com, GM foods have been found to result in tumors, organ failure, gastric lesions, liver damage, kidney damage, allergic reactions, and more.  Some of the other negatives of GMOs that I located in my research are:
  • GMO foods hold less nutritional value
  • the pesticides being used in mass amounts on these crops don't readily break down and  therefore pollute our earth and water sources.  
  • as weeds and pests are becoming resistant to pesticide use, more and stronger pesticides are being applied to counter this
  • the built in pesticides in GMO seed crops have been linked by some researchers to the the dying off of several insects including monarch butterflies and honey bees, which are important for the pollination of many plants and crops and therefore invaluable in the production of our food
So how do we know if the foods we're consuming are genetically modified?  Well, currently food manufacturers are not required to label foods that they produce that are genetically modified.  This is why Rachel Parent founded her Non- Profit, Kids Right To Know.  Rachel and her organization believe that "we all have a  "Right to Know" what is in our food, regardless of age..." . I would love to share more info with you on the dangers/concerns around GMOs and the importance of the introduction of labeling laws, but I am far from an expert in this arena so I'll leave that to Rachel Parent. She does a much better job of imparting this knowledge.  
Please take a few minutes to watch one of her very informative and eye opening videos and visit her Non-Profit's website at www.kidsrighttoknow.com...and remember that this very intelligent young woman is only 15.  Let's help her change the world we live in.  Let's show her our support by Liking the Kids Right to Know Facebook page, or even helping her deliver the message of concern to more people by making a donation to help her with her with the related expenses to do this.

Want to learn more? Rachel's website has several links that can help with that: http://www.kidsrighttoknow.com/education/.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Glorious Life Anniversary Contest

Do you like free stuff?
How about GREAT things that are also free?  
Okay, better yet, do you like great GLUTEN FREE products that are free?
Enter to win at www.facebook.com/gloriouslifehandcrafted.
It's a contest too good to pass up!


Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Gluten Free Food That Is TO DIE FOR! - Kulture Foods

Okay, so you all know that I (along with my family) am Gluten Free. It has been a few years now since we unexpectedly had to hop on the Gluten Free train.  It has been a Journey for this Gluten Free Mom.  At first, I had to learn what the heck gluten is. Then I had to train myself on it's language and how to find it in an ingredient list. It truly does have it's own language.  You won't find it listed as 'gluten' in the ingredient lists on your food products.  It's a sneaky little thing!  After finding gluten free foods I then had to figure out which ones taste bad (some of them were just aweful), which ones were bearable, and which ones tasted like I must have read the label wrong because it tasted so go it could not possibly be gluten free.  It was trial and error. Gluten free foods are fairly expensive,  so trying products only to find out they taste like garbage, or cardboard is disappointing on so many levels.  But when I find a product that makes me want to spit it out because it tastes too good to be gluten free, well then, I feel like I'm on cloud nine, over the moon, in heaven.  And THAT is exactly what happened last weekend.  Son said he wanted to go to the farmer's market. We were a bit tight on time but we all wanted to go and so we fit it in between breakfast and skating.

I love buying fresh produce, and being a crafter myself, I love looking at and appreciating the the lovely labours of other crafters.  Very seldom do I ever find gluten free goodies that are made in a gluten free kitchen and can be eaten without risk to my health and wellbeing.  This time was different.  I came upon a booth with a sign that read "Gluten Free should taste good."  and so I bit...I stopped to talk to the vender.  First question: Is everything here (at the booth) gluten free? His answer: Yes.  Second question: Is your kitchen gluten free?  His answer: Yes.  Now I was truly interested.  We chatted for a bit and he offered me a taste of the bread.  One bite and I was sold.  This bread is the BEST gluten free bread I have EVER tasted.  It was moist and spongy, not like the texture usually found in gluten free breads. THIS bread is better than ANY other - even the best store bought gluten free bread. Over the years I have tried baking gluten free bread myself and experimented with many recipes. But never did I ever come close to the heavenly goodness of this bread.  If you are gluten free and have been searching for bread that makes your mouth water, is amazing, wonderful and to die for...well I won't keep you in suspense any longer.



I give Kulture Foods two thumbs-up.  I realize that to some I seem a bit over the top, even kooky, but holy hannah, I can't wait to get more of this bread!  It wasn't just the texture and taste that pleased me though. It was the size of the loaf too. If you have ever bought a loaf of gluten free bread, you'll get it.  The size of the loaf was comparable to wheat bread.  The price was a bit more than store bought bread (at least those in the mid range at the store I normally shop at), but taking into consideration the size of the loaf (and the taste/texture too of course), it was reasonably priced ($7). 

I'm raving about their bread, but that's not all they make that is wonderful. We I went kinda bananas and bought a bit of almost everything they had: muffins (wonderful!), buns (also fantastic!), chicken pot pie (awesome!), and of course their bread. If you have a chance to check out Kulture Foods, their foods are well worth a try! Thank you Kulture Foods!

P.S. This product review was written on my own free will. Kulture Foods did not request it, nor will I receive any monetary compensation for writing this article.  I simply found a product I love and wanted to share it with the world. :)