When my kids are around the extended family, I find myself repeating things like, “okay, enough candy” and “no more juice, you’ll have water” to my son. When my F-I-L brought home sugar-free pancake syrup for Hoss (likely because I bark about the sweets), I realized something.
We confuse the heck out of people.
So, I’ve outlined the way we eat – partly for myself, and also for anyone else I may be confusing (sorry).
“Eat real food. Not to much. Mostly plants,” is the phrase you see associated with his name most often. As far as I’m concerned, that’s all you need to know.
Pollan also suggests avoiding “edible food-like substances” in the grocery store – the processed, chemical-laden packaged stuff that pretty much can’t decompose. (If it’s not good enough for bacteria to eat, it’s not good enough for my family either.)
Additives and fake versions of the real thing are to be shunned, including artificial sweeteners, fake fats, artificial colors, stabilizers, etc.
Weston A. Price
Eat traditional foods, the way pre-industrial people ate. Vegetables should occupy most of the plate, meat is fine, fat is no cause for concern (not even saturated), fermented foods are beneficial, and grains are okay, but better when soaked or sprouted.
If dairy is consumed, it should be minimally processed. Don’t alter the fat content, and pasteurization changes the composition and kills off the good stuff.
In his book, the Primal Blueprint, he establishes characters Grok, an active and healthy primal human, and Korg, the modern American with a host of health issues that stem from a sedentary lifestyle, poor diet and misinformation about food from both the medical community and advertisers.
Unlike other mainstream-ish diet books, he cites biological and anthropological information throughout to zero in on what our bodies are designed to properly digest and absorb nutrients from.
She demands quality and freshness to the point that, even at 84, she jumps behind the butcher counter to show the meat cutter how it’s done. She grows a lot of what she eats, and she prepares her family recipes as she learned in the “Old Country” as much as possible. She knows how a proper tomato should taste, how a sufficiently ripe cherry should taste, and she prefers her own cooking to most restaurants. Trust me, you would, too.
My own silly little policies…
Enjoy food that’s worth enjoying.
I love brownies, but not all brownies are created equal. Fresh from the oven or from a real bakery? Yes, please. From a plastic flip-top package in the grocery store, days-old with stale frosting? Neh. Fresh bread from the oven? Always. Sandwich bread in a bag? Not worth my jaw movements.
Foods I would consider “bad” but yummy are for celebrations.
Dessert does not naturally follow a meal. But yes, I will have cake at my child’s birthday party, (even though I usually scrape off colored frosting). And I probably have 3-5 sugary soft drinks (never diet) per year.
Restaurants are also for special occasions, so I order what I want.
That said, my preferences have kind of aligned with my food philosophy over time, but if I’m out to eat, I’m going to enjoy it.
I will swear up and down that I can taste additives.
Canned soup tastes like a can. Frozen pizza tastes like plastic. Nonfat, sugar-free ice cream tastes like something you should be putting in your car. Hydrogenated anything leaves an icky film on my tongue.
I personally don’t do dairy.
Last I checked, I never became a baby cow, so I’m not convinced I need it. Plus, dairy makes me break out like a tween. I’ll eat ice cream when the occasion calls for it. (Like, when my husband knows he made me mad and makes it up to me with Bruster’s. It’s like he admits he’s wrong, only better. I’m easy.)
I won’t ask you to accommodate me.
I may sit there and push around the food that was wrapped in cellophane not long ago, but it’s not personal.
We don’t replace.
Staying away from sugar doesn’t mean replacing it with artificial sweeteners. It means just plain not eating sugar. If I have a meatless dinner, there’s not some turbo-processed fake meat thing from the freezer on my plate. It’s beans and veggies.
There’s enough information out there that I know I shouldn’t be eating the fake stuff. I mean, I use Splenda(R) to kill ants. How can that be better for me than sugar?
The human body is always healing something. Make it easier.
Nobody is perfectly healthy, ever. From paper cuts to the flu to cancer cells (yes, we have cancerous cells in our bodies, always), we’re constantly fighting something. And if you minimize the immune resources your body uses up to fight what your food is hurting, your immune system can direct those resources to attack something else.
Note: The linked images of the books above are affiliate links. The authors and publishers have no clue who I am, so nobody is paying me to recommend them.