Ugh, The Dinosaur Camelbak Has To Go

Say-No-BPA-Free-AlsoLatest studies show chemicals used to replace “BPA” are worse for our health than BPA. My friends over at Mommy Business alerted me to this news in a recent blog post and I had to share with you. While thankful for the critical information, I’m grumbling over what happens next – finding a suitable replacement for the dinosaur camelbak that Evren snuggles with just about every night.

Back in 2007, when studies showed BPA mimicked estrogen in our bodies, I purged the plastic from our lives.That was pre-child days – so MUCH easier to use only glass though I still got flak from my family! Endocrine disruptors like BPA in our “food safe” plastic containers, found on receipts and more were being linked to lower fertility and increased cancer risk – two conditions I wanted to avoid as hopes of babies were in the horizon.

Fast forward to a few years ago when plastic manufacturers finally caved and committed to BPA-free, I started getting lax too. At first, it was just three stackable recycled BPA-free storage containers. Then, Evren started eating solid food and it was all over. The BPA-free plates cups and utensils snuck their way back into our cabinets AGAIN. Sound familiar?

Apparently, the plastic purge needs to happen once and for all because the latest studies have scientists screaming loud and clear “There’s NO safe alternatives to BPA.”

The latest animal studies showed exposure to common BPA substitutions like bisphenol-S (BPS) or bisphenol-F (BPF) causing hyperactivity in animals. The worst part is researchers found low doses of exposure to be more harmful than larger ones. And, according to another recent article “In laboratory tests, 95% of hundreds of ordinary plastic products put through “real world” conditions, such as through a dishwasher or a microwave, tested positive for leaching estrogenic chemicals.”  I don’t know about your family, but I use plastic so I can put in the dishwasher.

Of course, plastic manufacturers are pushing back saying the studies aren’t rigorous enough. Well…

I think the founder of CertiChem (an endocrine disruptor testing lab), George Bittner said it best “If you went into a space with a radiation detection device and found radiation, would you stop to take additional time to find out where the radiation was coming from? It wouldn’t matter—you’d just want to get out.”

That’s all folks, we’re getting out of plastics!

Here’s my plan:

  • Search Target for more snapware since they go sale often (these are glass pyrex with snapable lids)
  • Stock up on stainless lunch containers  (pricey, but definitely worth it).
  • Take the plunge and purchase a Life Factory 9oz glass bottle for Evren (it costs an arm and leg, but we need a camelbak replacement pronto)
  • Add more cute wooden bowls like these – though I hate that they can’t go in the dishwasher, they’re a safe alternative that Evren likes using

Thanks to Melissa at Mommy Business for the push! Read more tips for getting rid of plastic and which items to substitute for your plastic favs from Melissa over at Mommy Business.

Now, for the sake of your kiddos’ health, what’s your plan to shed plastics?

Homemade Almond Milk in Thirty Seconds

Almond Milk in 30 Seconds

You might be wondering, why on earth would you make your own almond milk? Homemade almond is soooo delicious and tastes nothing like the boxed kind. Though I prefer homemade, it’s not the real reason behind my hunt for a simple, cheesecloth-free recipe for almond milk. The real reason is the BIG, UGLY word “CARRAGEENAN” that’s found in most manufactured almond milk.

Carrageenan is a food additive extracted from red seaweed. It’s used mostly in dairy products and alternative dairy products to improve texture. There are two types of carrageenan: degraded and undegraded (food grade) carrageenan. Despite what some food manufacturers say about the safety of food-grade carrageenan, studies show both it’s  impossible to separate the two versions in the manufacturing process and, regardless, both versions are harmful to our health. Here’s a quick round-up of the extensive research by Dr. Joanne Tobacman on the ill effects of carrageenan:

  • It’s linked to malfunctions, ulcers and even cancers of the gastrointestinal tract (please don’t consume if you have any GI issues like IBS)
  • It causes inflammation which is linked to many diseases from Parkinson’s to cancer
  • It impairs insulin sensitivity which can lead to diabetes

Gross right?! The presence of carrageenan negates why we choose almond milk over cow’s milk in the first place. With almond milk, we’re expecting to avoid the stinky gas and stomach rumbles. But, the research shows carrageenan in almond milk may have you blowing the tank of the toilet!

So, what’s a dairy-free mama gonna do? Well, this mama decided it was time to find an alternative recipe that’s not only free of carrageenan, but is also speedy and simple! Traditional homemade almond is a pain in the tuckus to make. After you’ve spent 8 long hours soaking the nuts, you’ve got to squeeze the thick, messy almond goop through a cheese cloth or a nut bag. Who has time for squeezing a big mess of runny nuts through a mesh bag? Not me!

Thank goodness for Almondie by Eden’s Nuts! Almondie is made from high grade, sustainably grown California almonds that are peeled without any heat or chemicals. This process removes acid and enzyme inhibitors so the almonds are easily digestible and contain all of their natural nutrients.

almondie long

30 Second Almond Milk

1. Combine 2 tsp Almondie with 1 c filtered water in covered container
2. Shake vigorously.
3. Drink!

It was so amazing to find Almondie – a real life saver! When I told peeps at Eden’s Nuts I was writing a blog post about their product, they sent me a coupon code so you can save some moolah.! Use the code “Danielle1” to purchase one jar or “Danielle2” to purchase six jars.

Do your fav dairy and alternative dairy brands have carrageenan (check the Cornucopia Institute’s list here)? How do you feel after reading about carrageenan? Are you going to try Almondie? Tell us in the comments!


Healthy Holiday giveaway

Sometimes I love taking the kitchen by storm and whipping up something delicious for the fam. But, with the holidays just around the corner, I barely have enough minutes in the day to breathe let alone cook an A+ meal.That’s where this little lifesaver comes in!


During an especially busy week, I’ll toss a couple of ingredients into my crockpot and let dinner make itself.  In the winter, I love turning my Super Simple Chicken Bone Broth into Tasty Chicken Soup or slow cooking my favorite Butternut Chili from Gluten Free Goddess. In the summer, I can easily whip up Slow Cooker Pulled Pork in the middle of the week. (Girl, you know that’s an accomplishment!) The family loves these easy peasy meals because this mama is relaxed. Plus, an added bonus is getting dinner for a couple of nights from one meal!That’s why I’m giving away one of the Set n’ Forget 6 Quart Programmable Slow Cooker. You too can use it to cook up one of my favorite recipes from my personal crockpot recipe folder (I’ll even package those up and share them with the crockpot winner!). I’ve cooked countless simple, healthy meals with my crockpot and my family honestly wouldn’t it have it any other way. With less time spent on dinner prep, we have more time for fun!To enter the giveaway, use the rafflecopter widget below. There are many ways to get entries to win from liking us on Facebook to joining my email list so you can receive regular tips, recipes and more that make raising a healthy family super easy! The more options you chose, the more entries you’ll get!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy Holidays (now, get cookin!)The Healthy Holiday Giveaway begins December 6 at 12:00am EST and ends at 12:00 AM EST on December 20th. Giveaway entrant must be a resident of the United States. This promotion is sponsored and administrated by Healthy Mamas for Happy Families and the opinions expressed are my own.