|Evil? Good? Or neither?|
Probably by now you’ve heard about the Dreamfield’s issues that have arisen lately. A study shares that a smallish control group of people showed blood sugar spikes similar to regular pasta within hours of eating the touted, low glycemic load product that has been gracing store shelves for years now. People now wonder if the product isn’t what it seems… Well, is it?
So what’s the deal? And why in the heck bother to review the product?
Answers aren’t as easy as you might think. Is it what it seems? Yes… or no, depending (I’ll get to that as we continue). Why review the product? Because for those people who don’t experience elevated blood sugar, weight gains, stalls, or hunger, this product is valid and performs as it claims.
When the dam broke loose per Dreamfields, I went through the requisite disdain, upset, anger and bra burning (hey, I had a permit) that I’m sure many others felt at the possibility of being duped.
After all, I’d already told myself the stuff was no good, even after using it successfully for about a year. And, let’s face it–Jimmy Moore’s interview with the Dreamfields CEO didn’t do the product line any favors, did it? As the CEO worked his way uncomfortably through the interview, I sensed someone who didn’t seem to understand what was happening or didn’t have the hard answers consumers want. This sent up a major red flag to me as a consumer.
Then you add the study, which flew in the face of everything I’d heard and experienced. Forums grew ugly with infighting about the pasta’s abilities. Facebook erupted in long discussion chains about the stuff. Blogs moved to prove or disprove the theory about Dreamfields and its claims.
So I gave up. It’s expensive to buy the pasta in this economy, at $2.79/box anyway. Might as well pack it in and buy the cheap, store stuff for a buck. In the end it’s all pasta…
I bought, then, for the first time in years, two packages of the standard store brand spaghetti off the shelf. There was nothing particularly special about the spaghetti. I cooked it per instructions, drained the pan, and was surprised at the amount of what can only be described as a blobulous mass of lugubrious, starchy film 1/2″ deep in the sink after the pasta drained. It looked literally like a T-Rex hocked a loogie in there. Dreamfields never looked like that. Ever. This was a pretty nasty visual I wasn’t expecting.
As the plates were heaped with small amounts of pasta, the second thing we noticed was that we inadvertently devoured two entire bags of the regular stuff during dinner, something unusual for us.
What’s worse? We were starving 30 minutes later. STARVING. Like painful hungry starving. Painful, hungry, I will eat your face even though it’s socially awkward and likely unacceptable, but only with sauce starving. It was gnawing, painful and miserable… and from the standard pasta.
I was pretty flustered by this point. Normal, store bought pasta proved to be a horrible, stomach upsetting, hunger inducing experience I wasn’t expecting. We were all pretty surprised, to be honest. Had we always felt this miserable after a spaghetti dinner and never realized it?
So, in an effort to check one last time, I set out to give one final chance to Dreamfields to redeem itself and to test its mettle against what we’d experienced only the day before with the store brand. I expected to be hungry, feel miserable, and expect essentially the same experience we had from the normal pasta, further proving no pasta is going to be decent, Dreamfields or otherwise.
In fact, once I again served the pasta that promised only 5 net carbs of impact, we were pleasantly surprised. One single box of the product effectively fed my family of six, including four teens–unlike the two bags of standard store-bought pasta that left us literally starving for more.
The Dreamfields pasta is clean, easy to make, drained nicely in the sink (no dinosaur snot), and it was pleasant to eat. Sure, it loses its matrix as a result of the addition of the tomato sauce if one mixes the two together prior to serving, but simply spoon the sauce on the side and don’t store it in with the product if it goes in the fridge and you’re going to be fine, more often than not. That is, unless you’re someone who can’t stomach wheat, or the Dreamfields affects you as any other pasta would, in which case, you’re not in the target market for this product.
Even though our family’s experience was eye opening, I then continued to run the Dreamfields experiment on kids who came to the house for dinner who were close to my kids (muahahahaha!). The results? Best case, diners ate less and stayed full longer. Worst-case: They didn’t notice a difference because they ate quickly and devoured a ton… but they were still full hours later.
I remember one friend of my teen daughter’s heaped her plate with the pasta (I’m sure she was used to the regular, starchy stuff, at home) and couldn’t finish but 1/3 of the plate. She looked at me and said, “Wow. I’m just not hungry I guess.” She didn’t understand the power of the magical unicorn sprinkle Dreamfields matrix, but it worked for her. Even hours later, the usually ravenous teen never once raided the ice box.
My mother in law loved the stuff so much, I shipped an entire crate of the stuff to her house in a small Washington town, where the product was harder to find locally.
Overall result: While I didn’t at all set out to prove Dreamfields is superior (at least in my family and neighborhood), we came to the conclusion that, based on hunger, lack of intestinal/digestive distress and appearance, pre-and-post cooking, the stuff does what it claims.
Let me also state that while I haven’t tested blood sugar, I’m pretty sensitive to what I’m putting into my body. Carrots and broccoli, for example, are like sugar in my bloodstream. Within 30 minutes of eating either, I’m ready to chase a Good Humor truck down the street and molest the driver for a Creamsicle. When I have cauliflower or spinach, on the other hand, I’m literally full for hours. And this is from vegetables. Imagine how bready or sugary products affect me. It’s insane.
Because of this hyper awareness, this knowledge extends to everything from being able to spot a soy-filled food item by the tingling in my mouth to the knowledge of hidden potatoes followed by stomach upset, to extreme sinus pain in my teeth should I consume something with sugar.
Different bodies, different consumables, different reactions.
Does that mean others’ experiences, when different than mine, are wrong? No. Does it means the studies are meaningless? No. The discussions rendered moot? Oh heck, no.
It means that every consumer should try a product for themselves and determine what is best for their
body in terms of reaction. Do your own blind tests and be your own consumer activist. Don’t apply popular sentiment to yourself, and don’t be as quick to take up the pitchfork as I was–especially if it might be better used to eat some low glycemic pasta…
As for my house…
|Stocking up for the summer…|
Price: $2.79 at King Soopers, $1.99 at Super Targets for 13.25 oz package, 6.5 servings
Save: Visit Dreamfield’s site for a dollar off coupon here
Usefulness: Cooking, posing with sexy meat sauces. Filling for those who can handle it.
Negative: Contains wheat and is a little bit spendy. Not filling for those in whom it induces hunger.
Found at: Super Target
Website: Dreamfields Pasta
Disclosure: This product was not provided to me for review and hasn’t affected what I think of the stuff.