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Health & Wellness Wednesdays

Dealing with Addictions

Addicted To Cookies

As a weight loss coach for the past few years, I have encountered quite a few people who say that they are addicted to cookies.

At the heart of it, they are actually addicted to sugar. But for some of them, they cannot get through a day without consuming an overabundance of cookies.

Our culture has really normalized food addiction and made it into an almost trendy thing - personally, I think this is really too bad.

Moderation and self control are important characteristics for us as humans because overindulgence in anything is not good for us.

Too much sugar, too much alcohol, too much stuff, too much shopping - it’s all not good for us.

The thing about too much sugar is that it is bad for us physically. It causes harm to our bodies over time. Whether it’s trendy to say we can be “healthy at any size” or not, I would argue that this is a conversation about health that has nothing to do with worth, value or loveability. At some point our health suffers when we over consume sugar; our joints are affected by extra weight, our blood pressure goes up when we eat too much sugar, we can end up with fatty liver disease…and a whole host of other ailments.

I’m also not saying that you have to be a certain size or weight to be healthy. But I am saying that overconsuming sugar is a problem that we need to address as a society. 

It’s easy to become addicted to food or sugar as well - we have to eat and there is sugar added to SO many foods these days.

If you ask me it’s time for an overhaul of our ingredients lists on many of our regularly consumed products. Let’s get back to eating real, wholesome foods that do our body good.

Recommended Book

The Cookie Bible

Feb 21, 2024
ISBN: 9780358353997

Interesting Fact #1

The cookies that the Cookie Monster enjoys on Sesame Street are actually painted rice cakes.

SOURCE

Interesting Fact #2

Chocolate chip cookies were invented in the 1930s by Ruth Wakefield, who ran the Toll House Inn with her husband.

SOURCE

Interesting Fact #3

On that note: Have you noticed chocolate chips never melt? That's because they have less cocoa butter than chocolate bars.

SOURCE

Quote of the day

“I want to take all our best moments, put them in a jar, and take them out like cookies and savor each one of them forever.” ― Crystal Woods

Article of the day - A Brief History of the Cookie

The cookie, such a small little treat, but surprisingly has a very long history and is loved by millions. Did you ever how the first cookie came to be and what they look like in different cultures? Here is a Brief History of the Cookie.

The actual definition of a cookie is pretty wide. A cookie is any flour-based sweet cake that can easily be held in your hand. Cookies can either be crisp or soft, thick or thin.

The Origin of the Cookie

The first cookies are thought to be test cakes bakers used to test the oven temperature. They date back as early as 7th Century A.D. Persia which is now Iran. They were one of the first countries to grow and harvest sugar cane.

With war and exploration eventually sugar was introduced to the Mediterranean area and European countries and so were cookies. And by the end of the 14th century, cookies were common place in European cities. The earliest cooking books from the Renaissance were chockful of cookie recipes.

One popular type of cookie in Elizabethan England was a square short-cookie made with egg yolks and spices and baked on parchment paper.

After the Industrial Revolution, improvements in technology led to more variety of cookies be available commercially. The base for all cookies were the same though: wheat flour, sugar and fats like butter and oil.

Coming to America

Of course when the Europeans arrived in the Americas, they brought their cookie recipes with them. Soon they adapted the old recipes to fit the New World. American butter cookies are a close relative to the English teacake and the Scottish shortbread.

In the Southern colonies, every housewife knew how to bake tea cakes that had no extra flavoring except butter and sometimes a couple drops of rose water.

The first American cookies that showed up in cook books had creative names like Jumbles, Plunkets and Cry Babies which gave no clue to what was inside the cookie. As the expansion of technology grew in the United States, new ingredients started to show up in cookie recipes. For instance with the railroad, more people could purchase fruits and nuts like coconuts and oranges. Even cereal started showing up in cookie recipes after the Kellogg brothers invented cornflakes in the late 1800s. Then when electric refrigerators became available in the 1930s, icebox cookies also became popular.

Here are some of the most popular types of cookies from around the world.

Animal Crackers originally came from England to the United States and were first just called “Animals”. Then in the late 1800s, manufacturers in the United States began making them. Then with the rise of P.T. Barnum and his circus, “Animals” became “Animal Crackers” and that is when you started to see the still familiar square box with a circus cage on it and a handle for easy carrying.

Anzac Biscuit are Australia’s National Biscuit, but they started out as a hardtack biscuit for the Australian army. Because of their longer shelf life, these biscuits were used as a substitute for bread.

Biscotti is the general term in Italian for cookies. The word actually means “twice cooked”. For these cookies, the dough is shaped into logs and baked until they are a golden brown color. Then the logs are sliced into individual cookies and baked again.

Other countries have their own version of the Biscotti. The Dutch call theirs a rusk cookie and in Germany it is the zwieback.

The Chocolate Chip Cookie actually was invented by mistake by Ruth Graves Wakefield in 1937 in Massachusetts. She ran the Toll House Restaurant and would often bake cookies for her guests. On the day in question, she was making “Butter Drop Do” cookies when she realized she had run out of baker’s chocolate. She used a bar of semisweet chocolate instead expecting it to melt into the dough but instead the pieces of chocolate kept their shape. And that was the first bath of chocolate chip cookies. She originally called the cookies, “The Toll House Crunch Cookies”.

In 1939, Betty Crocker mentioned the cookie on her radio series on “Famous Foods From Famous Eating Places” and soon people everywhere were asking for the chocolate chip cookie. Ruth eventually made an agreement with the Nestle company that allowed them to print the recipe on the back wrapper of their Semi-Sweet Chocolate Bar and the rest is history.

In 1997, the chocolate chip cookie became of the official cookie of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
The origin of the Fig Newton is still up for debate. One claim is that the jam-filled cookies were invented by a Philadelphia inventor named James Henry Mitchell in 1891 when he created the machine that allows the cookies to be filled with jam. The machine was patented in January of 1892 and the cookies got its name from the town of Newton, Massachusetts.

Another claim is that the Fig Newtown was instead first created in 1899 by Charles Martin Roser in St. Petersburg, Florida. He had a cookie and candy manufacturing company and the legend says that he sold the right to his fig cookies for 1 million dollars, but there is little evidence to support this.

Ladyfingers date back to 11th century France and were popular among the royalty of Europe. In the early 1900s, they also became popular in the United States and Specialty Bakers Inc. in Marysville, Pennsylvania became known as “The Lady Finger Specialist”.

The Nazareth Sugar Cookie, also known as the Amish Sugar Cookies, probably has origins in Germany, but was perfected in the Nazareth area of Pennsylvania by German Protestants that settled there in the 1700s. The cookie is actually shaped like a Keystone, the state’s symbol.

This is just some of the popular types of cookies around the world. How is cookie dough made? There are so many different fun recipes.

Question of the day - How much sugar do you think is too much sugar in a day?

Dealing with Addictions

How much sugar do you think is too much sugar in a day?