I’m not a big processed food fan. By processed foods I mean anything that comes in a can, bag, or wrapper that is already cooked and ready to eat. I don’t hate it all but I do read ingredients and stay away from the things that have an unrecognizable list of chemicals in them.

I enjoy a potato chip or other salty snack now and again. I don’t usually have potato chips around the house because I’ll just eat them mindlessly. That salty snack urge is powerful so I only get chips when I actually want some. I go for some sort of natural kettle cooked chip. They’re the best. I almost never get flavored chips any more. These days they don’t taste like anything but chemicals to me and I feel bad after eating them. They are hardly an invigorating snack.

One of the only canned foods that I enjoy is Stagg brand chili. They have a good list of ingredients and a nice flavor. All other brands of canned chili that I’ve tried, Bush’s, Hormell, Cambell’s Chunky, and whatever store’s house brand are all bland and tasteless. The supermarket house brand I tried once (I can’t remember which) was so bad as to be inedible. Seriously, that stuff was foul. I can’t believe they sold it as food. Stagg is the only canned chili I will eat. They have a variety of flavors but unfortunately one of my local supermarkets only caries two of the flavors and the other store doesn’t carry that brand at all. And those are the “Super” supermarkets.

Another thing I never have anymore is a snack cake. You know, all that Hostess and Drake stuff. Ring Dings, Ding Dongs, cup cakes, Devil Dogs, or whatever. I was never a big fan of them but now I never buy them at all. If I buy them I’ll just eat them and they’ll make me feel bad. A snack should give you some “get up and go” and not make you want to take a nap. The only snack cake I still get is the Little Debbie coffee cakes. I still like them for whatever reason.

I am a chocolate fan but I don’t go crazy with the stuff. I usually have a bag of 60% cocoa chocolate chips lying about the place. It’s cheaper than buying a bar and I only have a little at a time. I can’t remember the last time I had a full size candy bar. I never want that much candy at once. I’ll get a bag of mini candy bars every now and then. That way I can have a variety of types of candy and only have a small amount. If I’m hungry I’ll go grab something real, like a piece of fruit, bread, veggies, or even a piece of chicken and then some chocolate afterwords. Eating candy to fill yourself up is just a bad idea that gets worse and worse as I get older.

In my youth, which ended around 25 or so, I could eat anything and it didn’t matter. Junk food never used to make me feel bad. It was just food like everything else. I never ate a lot of fast food, even then, but I noticed it was McDonalds food that first made me feel bad after eating it. Not all of it. But I never get any of their specialty sandwiches. If I ever eat at Mickey D’s it’s a basic hamburger and small fries. I’m cool with that.

I eat granola bars as snacks. I’m not quite sure where they fall on the junk/processed food scale but I like a lot of different types. The crunchy ones, the chewy ones (as long as they’re not too sweet), and lately some organic ones. I’ve been trying out some organic snack crackers too. I still like a taste of a salty snack but all those flavored cracker are loaded with chemicals and, once again, make me feel listless after I’ve eaten them. The organic snack crackers have a list of ingredients that I recognize. Pretty tasty too.

I’m also a breakfast cereal eater. Love the stuff. Another thing where I’m not sure where it falls on the junk/processed food scale. I don’t eat the really junky sugar cereals. I mostly like Cheerios, Wheaties, Shredded Wheat, Rice Chex, and the like. I might have a small bowl of Apple Jacks or some such as a dessert but I couldn’t imagine having it for my breakfast. And my imagination is strong, Grasshopper.