This 12-part video series (22-minute episodes) open our fridges, freezers and pantries to uncover the real science behind the fundamental foods we eat. From the mussel farms of the Marlborough Sounds to the rice paddies of Australia, Carolyn Robinson has been busy traveling to find out where the food we eat originates and how it gets to our plates. What’s Really In Our Food? continues to debunk common myths and misunderstandings surrounding nutrition, and looks at any other health benefits or risks that could stem from the food we eat every day. The 12 foods investigated in this post are Berries, Soy, Shellfish, Burgers, Curry, Milk, Fish, Lamb, Soft Drinks, Pies & Pastries, Salads, and Diet Foods.
We ask the questions most of us do working through the shopping list, such as are berries really a super food or is it just marketing hype? We know about the fat and the sugar but is there any nutritional benefit to Ice Cream? Is there anything apart from a beer gut to be worried about when it comes to drinking beer? In an episode on Shellfish, we reveal if it’s worth shelling out on oysters to improve a romantic evening – and watching our Oil episode will make you think twice about eating from the family BBQ every night. Carolyn also investigates where the pork industry is at when it comes to pig welfare after a controversial few years.
In this series, we have more expert opinion to help us understand the latest food research. We also continue to translate the bewildering labels and chemicals listed on the back of food packaging, and conduct our own lab tests on popular products to test for nutrition and expose anything else that shouldn’t be in there. If you want to know what food really does to our bodies, the fascinating Human Experiments will tell you. In the return of this popular segment, Carolyn puts some of the scientific theories to the test using brave volunteers. Will the foods we give them make them healthier, unhealthier, slower or smarter? We’ll see what a diet of instant noodles does to the inner workings of a flat of students and in a shellfish experiment on brain function, Carolyn recruits four well known faces from the ‘7 days’ show to see if a diet of mussels helps them better remember their jokes. In our beans episode, we’re finding out if there is anything you can do to make children want to eat their greens!
Is their reputation as a nutritional super-fruit deserved or is it just marketing hype? Carolyn investigates if antioxidants really work in our bodies and with many berries covered in numerous pesticides, should we be them eating them at all?
Season 4, Ep 7: Soy
Carolyn discovers it’s in an enormous amount of processed foods and we’re probably eating more than we think. So is it healthy? Or is it toxic? And can it impact on fertility?
Season 4, Ep 8: Shellfish
Carolyn investigates whether the shellfish in our shops could contain bacteria, viruses or even potentially lethal biotoxins. Can mussels increase your brain power and are oysters really an aphrodisiac?
Carolyn investigates whether burgers can provide us with key nutrients, or are they simply packed with fat and salt? And what exactly are they made of?
Season 5, Ep 2: Curry
What goes into a curry and where do the ingredients come from? Carolyn explores whether spices can protect us from cancer; does coconut milk contain contaminants; and whether chilli could be toxic.
Season 5, Ep 3: Milk
Is milk really a super food? Could some milk trigger heart disease, diabetes and sudden infant death syndrome? And what’s the environmental cost of our dairy industry?
Season 5, Ep 4: Fish
Could antibiotics and toxic heavy metals be lurking beneath the batter? Are all Fish and Chips loaded with fat? Carolyn travels to Vietnam to find out if we should be worried about imported fish.
Season 5, Ep 5: Lamb
Does our best lamb now get shipped overseas? Are we serving up hormones and anti-biotics with our most iconic Sunday roast? And can choosing the right veggies reduce your risk of cancer?
Season 5, Ep 6: Soft Drinks
Is bottled water really any better than tap? Do soft drinks contain ingredients that cause cancer? Are caffeine drinks messing with our sleep and harming our kids? Carolyn explores the supermarket drinks range.
We eat close to 70 million pies a year so what’s hooked us on the taste? Carolyn finds out if there’s such a thing as a ‘dodgy pie’? And could the fillings of some of our favourite pastries be less than savoury, or even put us at risk of disease?
Season 5, Ep 8: Salads
Can salad prevent cancer, diabetes, heart disease and even improve our eyesight? Or does the risk from pesticides and toxins mean we shouldn’t be eating it at all? Carolyn investigates whether the benefits outweigh the risks.
With more and more Kiwis struggling with their weight, Carolyn separates the reality from the hype. Are artificial sweeteners hazardous or helpful to your waistline? Do high-protein products work? And is it worth spending money on ‘diet’ meals?