Sorry for the delay in posting, its March Break here and the family and I have been very busy! The warm weather came early and we’re trying to enjoy every minute of it, in case it doesn’t last (which in this part of the world it rarely does until May!) That means lots of hikes and playing in the back yard and desperately looking for any signs of wild edibles popping up (a little early yes but it never hurts to look).
Today I wanted to write about the rules to our family’s no processed foods journey. I was at a friend’s house on the weekend; they are two of the most natural eaters I know. They raise their own chickens and eggs (which we appreciate more than they know!), they plant a garden in the spring, her mom has an orchard where they grow peaches and cherries which we all get to enjoy (again thanks!), he hunts for wild game, they make a lot of their own things like barbeque sauce and breads, pastas, baked goods etc. We always do some kind of pot luck when we get together, with lots of delicious foods and wine of course. But even though they eat very well, they were a little stuck trying to figure out what we could and couldn’t eat. The barbeque sauce they made was delicious but it did have brown sugar in it, which we decided because of the scant amount (he used mostly molasses to sweeten it) that we could eat it. I did tell them that if necessary we are using organic raw sugar, turbinado or demerara but not what most people buy as “brown sugar” since it’s really just white sugar with coloring and artificial flavour in it. Then there was some debate about what was in the Red Velvet cupcakes they’d made as they weren’t sure whether we could eat them or not, and it made me realize that maybe our personal “Food Rules” weren’t so clear.
Lately I’d been reading quite a few nutrition books concerned with eating more naturally and with less chemicals, like Jillian Michael’s Mastering Your Metabolism, Sophie Uliano’s The Gorgeously Green Diet, Tosca Reno’s Eat Clean Diet, Karl Weber’s Food Inc. and Michael Pollan’s Food Rules. They all have a lot of great tips on how to change your diet to be healthier, less processed, ingest less chemicals and live greener, but the one I probably got most of my rules from for Lent was Michael Pollan. In “Food Rules”, he gives the reader a very clear, easy to follow set of rules by which everyone should be eating. Here’s the top 5 most important ones my family is following:
1. Eat Food – choosing real, whole food instead of something processed
2. Don’t eat anything your Great-Grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food – that gets rid of anything that doesn’t look like food
3. Avoid food products containing ingredients no ordinary human would keep in their pantry – so cellulose, xanthan gum, calcium propionate amongst many others are on the no-eat list!
4. Avoid food products containing ingredients that a third-grader can’t pronounce – very similar to the last but very effective when taking my boys out grocery shopping with me!
5. Eat only foods that will eventually rot – so that cuts out preservatives!
Hopefully that helps sort it out for most people, if you still have any questions about my “rules” message me below and I’ll straighten out what I can. I’ll also be posting my weekly grocery list and more recipes as has been requested. Have a great weekend and get outside! 🙂