Men’s Health Magazine: 125 Best Foods for Men – Really????

Written by Max Goldberg on November 22, 2012. Follow Max on Twitter: @livingmaxwell.

When I heard that Men’s Health magazine recently came out with its 125 Best Foods for Men, I was very curious to see what they selected.

In terms of the process and criteria, the magazine “analyzed more than 1,000 supermarket foods and awarded points for products that are low in calories and high in protein and fiber, and made with whole ingredients.”

Additionally, “the packaged food for consideration must be nationally available at supermarkets in at least a majority of the 50 U.S. states. Products with limited or online-only availability will not be considered for inclusion.”

Before even taking one look at the list, my initial thoughts were:

1) I don’t know how the 125 Best Foods for Men could include anything but organic food products.

2) I don’t know how any food that contains GMOs could be on the list.

GMOs carry incredible health risks and are laden with toxic pesticides. If anything, foods that contain GMOs should be on the 125 Worst Foods for Men.

MY ANALYSIS

While there was a good number of organic products on the list, including milk, meats, and crackers, there were several other picks that really caught my eye. And I don’t say this in a good way.

1) The Best Cereal was Kellogg’s Fiber Plus Cinnamon Oat Crunch. This choice was a complete and utter joke.

Some of the ingredients include “sugar, soluble corn fiber, corn bran, artificial flavor, and BHT for freshness.”

Sugar is horrible for a person, the corn is most likely to be genetically-modified, and BHT (Butylated hydroxytoluene, a petroleum-based synthetic preservative) has been shown in studies to “increase the risk of cancer as well as accumulate in body tissue, cause liver enlargement, and retard the rate of DNA synthesis and thus, cell development.”

(It should be noted that Kellogg’s recently donated nearly $800,000 in order to defeat Proposition 37, California’s GMO-labeling initiative, and is one of many brands that I am boycotting.)

2) There were three kinds of yogurt on the list (plain, flavored, probiotic) but none selected was organic.

This means that there is a good chance that the milk used in this yogurt was taken from animals who received recombinant bovine growth hormones (rBGH).

Dr. Samuel Epstein, Chairman of the Cancer Prevention Coalition, an international leading authority on the causes and prevention of cancer, and the author of  What’s In Your Milk?: An Exposé of Industry and Government Cover-Up on the Dangers of Genetically Engineered (rBGH) Milk, warns that:

– rBGH makes cows sick. Monsanto, who used to own the patents to rBGH, was forced to admit to about 20 toxic effects, including mastitis, when rBGH had been administered to cows to make them produce more milk.

– rBGH milk is contaminated by pus, due to mastitis (an infection of the udder commonly induced by the hormone), and also by antibiotics used to treat the mastitis.

– rBGH milk is chemically and nutritionally different than natural milk.

- Excess levels of IGF-1 have been incriminated in well-documented scientific publications as causes of breast, colon and prostate cancers.

3) The Best Protein Powder was Optimum Nutrition’s 100% Gold Standard Double Rich Chocolate.

I went to Optimum Nutrition’s website and the full ingredient list was nowhere to be found.

So, after more digging, I located the ingredients on Muscle & Strength, an e-tailer of supplements, and found that this product contains “protein blend (whey protein isolates, whey protein concentrate, whey peptides), cocoa (processed with alkali), artificial flavors, soy lecithin, acesulfame potassium, Aminogen®, lactase.”

The very first thing that educated shoppers of whey protein look for is whether the product contains rBGH.

Brands that don’t use rBGH very proudly put this on their labels, as Tera’s Whey and Solgar, respectively, do below.

Since there is absolutely no mention of rBGH on Optimum Nutrition’s website, one must assume that its whey does contain rBGH.

Furthermore,

– The soy lecithin is most likely to be genetically-modified.

– The product contains artificial flavors.

– Cocoa processed with alkali dramatically reduces the amount of flavonoids.

– Acesulfame potassium is an artificial sweetener.

– Aminogen is some type of patented, and presumably synthetic, digestive enzyme.

—-

How do products with artificial sweeteners, artificial flavors, and synthetic preservatives make the 125 Best Foods for Men list, given that Men’s Health clearly stated that the products selected must be “whole foods”?

There can be two possible explanations for this.

First, the judges at Men’s Health never bothered to investigate the ingredients of the products that they selected.

Two, the products selected are advertisers in the magazine.

While the list of 125 did contain several organic brands, the fact that a health magazine named the products above, and other very questionable ones, to its 125 Best Foods for Men is nothing short of a disgrace.

To see the full list of the Men’s Health magazine’s 125 Best Foods for Men, click HERE.

Please comment below about what you think of the products chosen. What products do you agree with? What products do you not agree with?

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18 Comments

  1. Good research thank you. I can confirm the advertising practise of not talking too bad of your advertising client. Did you forward your article to menshealth?

    Written by the eruope guy on November 23, 2012 @ 12:16 pm
  2. I agree. I’m pretty sure that the 125 best foods for men (and women and children) are all in the produce section.

    Written by Mary on November 23, 2012 @ 2:11 pm
  3. It would be great to see your suggestions side by side with theirs.

    Written by Paul on November 23, 2012 @ 2:43 pm
  4. Thanks for reading. Yes, I am sure they know all about it.

    Live well,
    Max

    Written by Max Goldberg on November 23, 2012 @ 2:51 pm
  5. Hi Mary,

    You could be very right. Or, at least a very high majority of them.

    Live well,
    Max

    Written by Max Goldberg on November 23, 2012 @ 2:52 pm
  6. Hi Paul,

    That is something that I would like to do one day. Thanks for your input.

    Live well,
    Max

    Written by Max Goldberg on November 23, 2012 @ 2:53 pm
  7. Thanks for this research! The author of the article is obviously not up on real food and most likely thinks the foods are well chosen. That is the best thought. The author of the article is a shill for the chemical industry. That is the worst thought. Somewhere in between is the truth. Thank you again for helping us sort through the huge amount of information about food floating around these days.

    Written by Ann on November 23, 2012 @ 6:59 pm
  8. Hi Ann,

    I appreciate the words. What most likely is the case that Men’s Health has advertisers that it has to support and they probably figured very few people would actually question their list and go through the ingredients.

    For a health magazine to select some of these non-organic, GMO-products, it is a complete farce.

    Live well,
    Max

    Written by Max Goldberg on November 24, 2012 @ 1:16 pm
  9. Max, thanks for writing this great article. However, it would help mankind if you actually made practical suggestions. It is good to unearth all these issues. However, most guys like myself who subscribe to Men’s Health are left wondering what the alternative is. So, do everyone a favor and publish your own list side by side to their list.

    Written by Tonie in Washington, DC on November 29, 2012 @ 6:05 pm
  10. ” was taken from animals who received recombinant bovine growth hormones (rBGH)?”
    Also worth mentioning is all of the food the cows were eating; had pesticides, GMO’s and more deadly chemicals in them!!

    Also you Didn’t mention about the Organic Soya Lethicin. Soy is definately bad for our health: http://www.naturalhealthstrategies.com/dangers-of-soy.html I’ve never read on anyone’s blog, that said organic soybeans are bad for you, but organic ones are good for you. Thats what I get from what people are saying. I wish that in all forms of preparation, that they were good for us!

    Written by Rita on November 29, 2012 @ 11:26 pm
  11. @Paul Thats what I was thinking sometime ago. Is to put comparisons along side each other in the media. In mags and books etc. – if a mag or book gets to be too many pages, they can provide links of the Good True articles.

    Written by Rita on November 29, 2012 @ 11:32 pm
  12. Hi Tonie,

    I cannot promise that I will do a side-by-side list (maybe I will) but I will do something or some list specifically geared towards men. I need to give it some more thought but I want to put something out there that will be helpful to you and others.

    Thanks for your comment and stay tuned!

    Live well,
    Max

    Written by Max Goldberg on November 29, 2012 @ 11:55 pm
  13. Hi Rita,

    Very good point and that was something that should have been mentioned.

    Organic soy lecithin is a controversial one and not everyone agrees that it is bad for your health. Non-organic soy lecithin clearly is not good for your health.

    Thanks for your input!

    Live well,
    Max

    Written by Max Goldberg on November 29, 2012 @ 11:58 pm
  14. Hi Rita,

    As I responded to Tonie, I will be doing something to give people guidance as to what Men’s Health got wrong and what my suggestions would be. I’m not sure what the form will be (maybe side-by-side comparison) but it will be something similar.

    Live well,
    Max

    Written by Max Goldberg on November 30, 2012 @ 12:00 am
  15. Hi Max,

    Thank you so much for your informative website. It’s awesome! One thing I would like to ask. When you mention Farmer’s Market, all fruits and vegetables have to say “Organic” correct? I live in Jersey and all the Farmer’s Market that I’ve been to have no organic fruits & vegetables. I usually have to go to Whole Foods or Trader Joes which are a little pricey.

    Written by Iris Nunez on February 21, 2013 @ 11:50 am
  16. Hi Iris,

    Not all farmers at farmer’s markets are certified organic. Ask them if they are using chemicals — usually, they’ll tell you. Numerous times they have told me that they are using chemicals.

    This is very different than buying non-organic produce at the supermarket where you can’t talk to the farmer and have no idea if chemicals are being used or not.

    Live well,
    Max

    Written by Max Goldberg on February 24, 2013 @ 9:47 am
  17. If they leave those foods off then where is their funding going to come from??? I agree that foods filled with crap do not belong on a healthy list EVER!!! But they are thinking about the bottom line and their viewer ship. Many people in this country see nothing wrong with GMOs and processed foods. So if they come out strongly against them people may stop reading their magazine.

    Written by Wendy on May 10, 2013 @ 12:28 pm
  18. Hi Wendy,

    I agree with you but I don’t think people will stop reading their magazine. The real risk is alienating advertisers.

    Live well,
    Max

    Written by Max Goldberg on May 10, 2013 @ 4:20 pm

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