Click here to access a written transcript of this episode.
In a society obsessed with “clean eating” and “food as medicine,” it's easy to feel anxious and scared about your food choices. I know that I did for many years before I started to heal my relationship with food through intuitive eating.
The problem is that many common food worries are based in misinformation. And that's why food scientist Erin, also known as Food Science Babe, is dedicated to #factsnotfear. Through her popular social media accounts, Erin dispels myths about food and the food industry using science.
In this episode, Erin sets the record straight about conventional vs organic produce, GMOs, pesticide use, and processed foods. Hopefully after you've listened you'll be able to breathe a sigh of relief and make future food decisions with more confidence.
- What Erin's different roles as an engineer and food scientist have looked like over the years.
- How Erin first discovered the marketing forces behind the non-GMO and organic labels.
- Reasons why food myths and dogma are able to catch on and spread.
- The issues that result when a person makes their diet part of their belief system.
- What the organic and non-GMO labels on foods actually mean vs what people think they mean.
- The problem with assuming that “natural” things are safer and better for the environment.
- How all of our crops today have been genetically modified to some extent.
- The precision and efficiency of modern genetic modification methods compared to older methods, such as cross-breeding.
- How buying organic because you're afraid of conventional isn't a very good reason to buy organic.
- The “Dirty Dozen” list and why you don't need to purchase your produce according to it.
- How pretty much everything we buy has been processed to some extent (which is often a good thing).
- Issues of access and the ways in which food fearmongering can cause real harm.
- How literally everything is made up of chemicals, but it's the dose that makes the poison.
- Pesticide residue levels on crops and how they're well below levels that could be harmful to humans.
- How a food scientist trying to make food taste good is no different than a chef at a restaurant trying to make a meal taste delicious.
- How Erin defines health and wellness for herself at this moment in her life.
Mentioned in This Episode
- The annual “Dirty Dozen” list put out by the Environmental Working Group (the “EWG”)
- The EWG and the Non-GMO Project as examples of biased organizations
- The USDA bioengineered food label
- Safe Fruits and Veggies Pesticide Residue Calculator
This Episode is Part of the Health and Wellness Changemakers Series Sponsored by Superfit Hero
I am so grateful to be collaborating with the body-positive brand Superfit Hero to introduce you to these changemakers who are taking the health and wellness industry in a new direction. The series runs from episode #37 to episode #48, so be sure to catch them all. Superfit Hero is an inclusive activewear brand that aims to provide clothing for ultimate confidence, no matter your size or sport. And if you enjoyed the Superfit Hero Wellness Tip of the Week, be sure to check out the dozens of amazing coaches and trainers in Superfit Hero’s Body Positive Fitness Finder.
Featured in This Episode
Erin (she/her), widely known as Food Science Babe, is a food scientist who has a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of Minnesota. She's worked in the food industry for over a decade, both in the conventional and natural/organic sectors. Erin combats misleading food claims online by using #factsnotfear to share the truth about agriculture, food marketing, and more. You can find Erin on her Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Patreon.
The Queer Agenda
The Queer Agenda is a newsletter dedicated to uplifting LGBTQIA+ folks (where our accomplices benefit too) by sharing thoughtful tools, strategies, advice, and encouragement to help us heal and come home to ourselves. It’s equal parts warm hug, gentle kick in the ass, and queer magic.