Do you want to eat healthier?
You make a resolution every year to change your habits and become healthier. Eat better, exercise more, feel better and lose those last 10 pounds. But, you want to start and you get totally overwhelmed because everyone is telling you to do something different! Eat paleo! Do Whole 30! Go gluten free! Do this program! Do crossfit or this and that and don’t do this but do the other thing! Uggghhhhh!
You just don’t know where to start.
Seems hopeless sometimes right?!
It seems too complicated. You go to the store and look at the prices and your eyes bug out of your head. You think, why would I spend 2x as much for an organic apple than a bag of chips or a non-organic apple for that matter? Then you feel stressed and think; “I don’t have the money in the budget to eat organic!”
I have been there. We are a one income family, with 3 kids, a teenage SON who eats like horse, a teenage daughter and a tween, and all of the neighborhood children that hang out at our house daily. I HAVE to be gluten free due to an allergy, and I insist on my kids eating whole foods (Not the store), real food, unprocessed or very little processed food. You are right; it’s not cheap. There is nothing cheap about it; but you CAN do it on a budget.
My kids have never had the flu (or a flu shot), they are rarely sick and if they do feel under the weather, then it’s usually just a slight cold where their body is just doing what it is supposed to do; fight off bad germs! You can either pay now to eat healthy or you can pay later in the doctors office for your co-pay and many many prescription pills or treatments.
The motto is this:
Eat foods made by people in white coats and expect to see lots of people in white coats later.
So, pay now for good health or pay later in doctors bills. Either way you will pay and I can promise you, that it is cheaper in the long run to eat healthy now.
How to know if your food is frankenfood:
Wait, what is frankenfood!? Well, it’s food made by people in white coats, made in a big factory with tons of additives, chemicals, sugar, and preservatives. All things that cause inflammation in your body. I will begin with listing only the top yucky additives for now. You have to start somewhere! And we are starting with baby steps!
First: Learn to read food labels. Here is how you do it: Look at the ingredients. The ingredients is the most important thing to look at when looking at the back of food packaging.
The ingredients for example on Skittles is:
Made of: Sugar, Corn Syrup, Hydrogenated Palm Kernel Oil, Less Than 2% of: Citric Acid, Tapioca Dextrin, Modified Corn Starch, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Colors (Red 40 Lake, Titanium Dioxide, Red 40, Yellow 5 Lake, Yellow 5, Yellow 6 Lake, Yellow 6, Blue 2 Lake, Blue 1, Blue 1 Lake), Sodium Citrate, Carnauba Wax.
If you see any ingredients that you can not pronounce, it is frankenfood.
The Top Ingredients to Stay Away From:
- Corn Syrup
- High Fructose Corn Syrup (all this is, is a shot of round up and toxic to your body. It is called a neurotoxin)
- Red 40
- Blue Lake
- Yellow 5 or any other colors. Your food label should not contain the colors you see in a box of crayons!
- MSG- MSG is a neurotoxin. This is a powder that is used in many foods. It tricks your brain into thinking it needs more. Steer clear of that! There are over 40 names that MSG hides under. But don’t stress about this one ingredient just yet. You can not avoid it at all times, but eating real, unprocessed food is start. *HINT* When you go to a Chinese restaurant you can actually request that it be MSG free. Chinese food is one of the most prevalent places to find MSG. To read more on MSG click here.
If you eat real food you shouldn’t have to worry about this ingredient. I’ve never seen an a piece of fruit or a vegetable with MSG in it.
If you see anything with the the word hydrolyzed or hydrogenated stay away. Put it right back where you got it from and step away! All this is, is trans fats. Trans fats cause:
- heart disease
- high blood pressure
- inflammation throughout your body which causes many other chronic conditions.
If you see hydrogenated or hydrolyzed then it’s frankenfood! When you really think about it, it really is not very hard to know what to eat. The thing is, is that the food industry has come up with food “ideas” that aren’t truly food, but they are technically edible; meaning you can chew it, you can taste it, you can swallow it, and it will eventually pass through your system. It doesn’t have to be food for the FDA to approve it. Have you ever thought about the fact that the FDA controls our food AND drugs? It is BACKWARDS.
Frankenfood keeps the pharmacutical companies and many doctors in business . Granted we need doctors, but our need for them has gotten out of control. Use common sense when choosing what to eat. Everything is SO different now than 40 years ago. Our food, even our TV programs and commercials are different. Think about this, when you watch TV, what commercials do you see? Most of the commercials you see now will be for some kind of prescription drugs stating all of the horrendously awful side effects that they cause, even being DEATH. IF it’s not drug commercials, you see brightly colored foods with cartoon characters marketed towards kids. That is probably one thing that hasn’t changed too much in the last 40 years. It’s a shame, because all of those foods are highly processed, lacking any crucial nutrients and most contain almost all of the ingredients I listed above.
Most kids today don’t really know what “real” food is. It is crucial to teach kids now, so that healthy eating habits are established at an early age. What your children eat now, will most likely determine their health issues later in life.
Cancer, unfortunately is a disease that humans created. What is your body make of? Cells. Cancer in simple terms, is abnormal cell growth due to malfunctioning cellular structures. Much of what causes our cells to malfunction is chemicals and man-made ingredients that are not meant to be ingested. Your cells are essentially what you eat. If you eat chemicals, your cells do not know what to do with it and it can and will eventually cause them to malfunction, causing illness.
Now, we can not avoid ALL chemicals; but we can avoid ingesting them in our food for the most part. We unfortunately breathe them and they are in our everyday environment, but you don’t have to EAT them on a daily basis!
A long list like the one started above can be overwhelming, and can certainly give you the feeling of, “what is there left to eat?!!” You may even want to just give up. But don’t. We will walk though the process one step and one bite at a time.
So, when trying to avoid artificial ingredients, the main focus should be on a diet of whole, unprocessed foods, including organic vegetables, grains, legumes, fruits, nuts and seeds, organic and grass-fed meats, and organic dairy.
In another post soon to come is why you need to make sure your proteins are clean, preferably organic and grass-fed.