Important fact about polar bear liver
Misinformed folks are jumping on the bandwagon of the “Nothing White Diet.” I cringe every time I hear these words. I’m here to defend the colorless.
A Harvard study blamed white potatoes for weight gain in the United States. French fries are the most popular form of vegetables eaten. Avoiding all potatoes because of a study that zeros in on a manner of cooking is like throwing the baby out with the bath water.
Sure, white potatoes, white rice, white flour and white pasta are high in calories when smothered in gravy or sauce or grease. A plateful of pasta definitely will add extra weight as compared to a smaller one cup portion.
The brown and whole grain varieties of these foods add more fiber and antioxidants. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans encourage “making half your grains whole grains.” Meal planning should not totally avoid white foods.
Bananas, cauliflower, garlic, ginger, mushrooms, onions, potatoes, turnips, white corn, white nectarines and white peaches are a few of the white foods that people avoid because of the fear of gaining weight. White fruits and vegetables contain nutrients that provide powerful immune boosting activity. They also can reduce the risk of colon, breast and prostate cancers. They have been identified as able to balance hormone levels, reducing the risk of hormone-related cancers.
Yet people still ride the tide of the “Nothing White Diet.” Hearing that someone is following this regime makes my blood boil. There are no good foods or bad foods.
Wait, I will eat my words. There is one bad food that no one should ever eat. If you ever are stranded on an arctic iceberg and happen to shoot a polar bear, I have one caution. Bear meat is high in protein and will sustain life until rescue occurs. Do not, and I repeat, do not eat the polar bear’s liver. It is so incredibly high in Vitamin A that it will be toxic. When the helicopter does arrive to transport you to safety, you will be dead. As far as I am aware, there is one bad food, polar bear liver.
As far as eating white food, have at it! Portion size is the key to weight control, not the color of the food.
A concern with the white potatoes, flour, rice and pasta is the potential impact on blood sugar levels. These types of white foods have very little fiber and they break down into sugars more quickly causing a blood sugar rise more than high fiber foods. This action could cause some people to be hungrier sooner. When people are hungrier sooner, they eat more resulting in weight gain.
Instead of following a “Nothing White Diet” consider a high fiber diet with at least 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day. Call it the “Nothing but Fiber Diet” and enjoy lower blood sugars and blood pressure. Be careful with the polar bear liver, though, you just never know.
Bobbie Randall is a certified diabetes educator, registered, licensed dietitian. She supervises a diabetes self-management training program at Aultman-Orrville Hospital, Orrville. Contact her at email@example.com or 330–684-4776.