10 Ways to Start Eating REAL Food Today

Adopting a new way of eating can feel like you’re turning your life upside down. There are so many varying opinions. Low fat? No fat? Calories? Carbs? Green smoothies? Superfoods? Vegan? Paleo? (no wonder most people choose to do none of the above…that’s enough to make your head explode!)

A Rule I challenge people to live by is to just eat real food. Make little changes in your day to day life and they will soon become automatic. Here are 10 simple changes you can make to your diet which can have very rewarding effects on your health, the environment, your family and your community.

10 WAYS TO START EATING REAL FOOD TODAY

  1. Get to know your Local Farmers: Ask questions about how animals are raised, what they eat and how they are treated. Also ask about produce too. How are pests dealt with on fruit and which veggies are currently in season. Most farmers are happy to chat with you about what they are doing.
  2. Eat with the Seasons: When we live in a particular climate, our bodies get the most from the foods that naturally grow in the soil that surrounds us. Most of the time, our bodies will need exactly what is being produced at the time. In Ontario for example, it is appropriate for residents to eat long cooked root veggies in the winter and raw salads in the summer. Visit your local farmers market or sign up for a CSA farm box delivery. This is a great way to find inspiration and invest in being creative.
  3. Eat only what your Grandmother and Great-Grandmother would recognize as food. Period.
  4. Eat Meat but be Discerning: There is a vast difference between a pastorally raised chicken and a factory farmed chicken. Grass fed beef and the products from the cow (such as the milk) are going to yield a very different nutritional provision than something from a commercially farmed animal. The slightly higher cost is worth it in terms of taste and how your body will thank you!
  5. Eat Cultured foods Regularly: This helps to keep the digestive system in balance and the healthy bacteria at good levels. Some of my favourites include home-made kimchi, cultured yogurt (also home-made) and home-made, fermented sodas (like ginger beer)
  6. Choose Quality over Quantity: When you make a conscious effort to choose the most nutrient dense foods, you will feel satiated. This will result in a decreased desire to snack on junk food.
  7. Cleanse your Cupboards: Rid yourself of anything processed, boxed, packaged or full of ingredients you cannot pronounce. If it’s not there, you won’t eat it.
  8. Give up your Fear of Fat: Fat is needed for maintenance and production of healthy tissues, hormones and healthy brain function. Your skin and hair will also thank you. Try to include healthy fat in every meal (butter, olive oil, avocado, coconut oil, bacon, lard, tallow, etc)
  9. Say no to Processed Sugar: Limit your consumption of sweets and use only minimally processed sweeteners in your cooking, such as maple syrup, raw honey or unrefined cane sugar (also known as rapadura or sucanat). Like agave and stevia? Think again. Yes, they both COME from natural plant sources but are still HIGHLY processed (just like white sugar)
  10. Consider that food is for more than just fuel: It is social, cultural and sensual. Some even look at it as a meditative experience. When you prepare meals for and eat with others, you are presented with an opportunity to provide delicious nourishment from sources that you know and trust. It is a beautiful way to express your love for the people who matter most (and this should include yourself!) It doesn’t get much better than that!

 

 

Michelle Kapler
Michelle Kapler
When I’m not working, you can find me knitting socks, writing for my blog, eating oysters that my husband has lovingly shucked, creating and co-creating meals for loved ones or hanging out with my Herbal Medicine Textbooks and and a very specifically pulled espresso.
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