Granola or ’Iru’

Granola or ’Iru’

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Assuming I gave you 500g of Kellogg’s Granola and ‘iru’, a fermented locust bean, it is likely that you would appreciate the granola more than my friend Deon Braun would. Despite being in his fifties, Deon looks much younger due to his vegan lifestyle and regular exercise, which includes activities like swimming, hiking, running, surfing and gardening. He often shares with me information about healthy eating and sustainability, and recently informed me about the potential health risks associated with certain non-stick cookware that contain chemicals like polytetrafluoroetheylene (PTFE) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA).

One day, I offered Deon the granola, but he declined, explaining that he doesn’t eat ultra-processed foods. Instead, he enjoyed the ‘iru’ and gave the granola to his house cleaner. Though I didn’t argue with him about whether or not granola is an ultra-processed food, I was inspired by his commitment to reducing his consumption of processed foods. As a result, I decided to reduce the amount of granola I eat daily, and instead opted to slice apples and bananas into my plain yogurt, even though it takes more effort and isn’t as delicious.

While my friend avoids consuming processed or ultra-processed foods altogether, I suggest that we all aim to reduce our consumption of these types of foods. Research has shown that ultra-processed foods, in particular, can contribute to overweight and obesity, as well as increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, and cerebrovascular disease.

Let food be thy medicine and medicine thy food. Hippocrates

 

Tosin 'Badeniyi, PhD

Tosin 'Badeniyi, PhD

Tosin ‘Badeniyi, a Professor at the Department of Biotechnology and Food Science at Durban University of Technology, South Africa, holds a doctoral degree in Food Science from University of Pretoria South Africa. Since 2001, he has conducted research and lectured internationally in the area of food quality and safety. He is the editor of Food Science and Technology: Trends and Future Prospects and has published numerous scientific publications as well as four inspirational books.

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