Monday, March 19, 2012

Food is Fuel

Lately I've been getting a little too into reading about food and nutrition.  It's kind of annoying, you become "hungry" (hahaha) for more information on diet, nutrition, exercise, health, etc.  You start to realize how much propaganda there is in the food industries telling us what is "healthy" and "balanced". It all began last year after reading  Omnivores dilemma, then watching Food Inc, followed by watching "Fat Sick and Nearly Dead," leading to reading the book"Good Calories Bad Calories" by Gary Taube. Now I'm here.

My husband and I transitioned over to paleo/primal after Christmas and haven't looked back.  With my husband's gluten intolerance, it actually turned out to be a good choice for us.  Now, paleo/primal is a big "fad" to some right now, and you can argue the carbohydrate debate all day as to whether or not we need 50, 100, 150 or more grams/day until the cows come home, then continue to argue whether or not you can call yourself paleo if you eat dairy.....but what I really love about paleo/primal is how it really makes you focus on what you're putting in your body.  By eliminating processed grains (wheat, corn, rice), legumes (beans, soy), and processed sugars, you're truly just forced to put whole foods into your body.  You'd be hard pressed to find a processed a food that doesn't contain soy, corn, rice, wheat, or processed sugars (and their by products).

I find myself scouring the internet for new recipes and getting creative in the kitchen to find savory and filling meals that are healthy, satisfying and grain-free.  I think of food as fuel and try to eat when I'm hungry and gauge how many grams of carbs I need based on my activity level that day, not mindless cravings.  I read the labels of every food that comes into my house and our bodies.  Over the last few months I've become really appalled and disappointed at our food industries.  I'm appalled at what's in our food.  I'm angry at how it's deceptively marketed as healthy, or targeted to kids.  Really, Trix cereal is "heart healthy"?  Did you know one serving of the typical children's cereal has as much sugar as a can of coke? Of course my 2 1/2 year old will want the yogurt with sponge bob on it that has twice the sugar and less protein than the yogurt I would choose for her.  What part about white bread resembles any kind of grain to you?

Want to know another thing that is really frustrating? I subscribe to the Sunday paper mostly for the coupons, and every week I'm frustrated at how the only coupons that I can use are for laundry detergent and cheese.  Every other coupon is for processed junk.  No wonder why americans don't eat a healthy diet, we're basically coerced into buying crap because it's cheaper and faster.  It is unfair and just plain wrong that it's more expensive for the average family to eat whole foods, fresh produce, lean fresh meats, than it is for them to buy pre-packaged processed foods, laden with salt and sugar.'re probably bored already.  This is just something I've become really passionate about.  I challenge you for a week to read what's in your food.  Ask yourself if it even resembles real whole ingredients.  Stop counting calories and listen to your body, feed your body when it's hungry, not when it's noon.  Food is fuel.


Jeanne said...

It`s not just in America, believe me. Over here (England) we have a shop that is advertised with the slogan "That`s why mum`s choose Iceland" Iceland is a cheap shop thay sells predominently frozen fast food. It`s cheap, laden with salt, sugar and palm oil and you can do a ton of shopping really cheaply. It saddens me too. The amount we spend on healthy groceries per week is horrendous. If we wanted to eat junk, our food bill would be cut in half! x

Sarah said...

Awesome post, Jenney! I couldn't agree more. It's also terrible in schools. It made me sick to see my students eat chicken nuggets, French fries, corn and chocolate milk. This kind of meal is offered rather than whole foods be ause it meets the quantity (rather than quality) or calories required. The saddest part is that in my school, it was the I only meal that some of those children would get in a day. I share your passion, girl!