Wednesday, February 20, 2013

My Food Philosophy

Like my side bar says:  Give thanks.  Amen.  Dig in.

I want to be clear about something, I believe its important to take care of the body you've got.   I don't believe eating or not eating certain foods (or substances claiming to be foods) makes you any better or worse of a person.  If you call the Big Mac dinner, or a cinnamon roll breakfast, or light yogurt and a dressing-drenched salad lunch, and you thank the Lord for what you're eating... God bless ya!  I hold no personal judgements against you or your diet.  We can get together for lunch anytime.  I promise not to condemn you for eating Micky D's if you won't judge me for eating my slow-cooked pulled pork with homemade coleslaw and sweet potato.

I see the Biblical trend towards a self-made religion through a restricted or "righteous" diet.  A diet doesn't make you righteous.  A diet doesn't make you unrighteous.

My change in diet and newly forming food philosophy has nothing to do with believing it to be morally wrong to eat certain foods or morally right to eat others.  It's purely a what's-best-for-the-physical-body philosophy.

I'm not even really hung-up on Paleo or Whole30 diet labels.  I have chosen to go grain-free and sugar-free (not honey-free) and dairy-free because after adhering to a Whole30 and/or Paleo diet for the past month and half I feel never-going-back better!  You can read more on my Whole30 here.

I like the way Dallas and Melissa Hartwig, the authors of It Starts With Food (a great read by the way):

If you’re reading this blog, we all have one thing in common:  we try to eat well, whether we call it “Paleo” or “Whole30″ or just plain “clean”. We know the difference between Real Food and Stuff You Can Eat. We eat real food, natural food, nutrient-dense food. We avoid foods that require additives to be “healthy”, high-tech fabrications designed to replace real food, and food-like products made from ingredients we cannot pronounce. And we do this, day in and day out, for the vast majority of our meals and snacks.

I believe that what we eat has an enormous impact on our health and how we feel.  My health and how I feel is important.  One thing I've come to realize about myself is that what I've really valued is taste and convenience... actually not even the taste.  I mean yes, the chocolate cake or pizza tastes good for five seconds before it starts to hurt me, but now that I've been eating clean or real (as I like to call it), I've found that those foods don't even taste as good to me anymore.  The foods that I liked and craved gave me seconds of pleasure and weeks of pain.  I was trading a moment of pleasure and convenience for being hurt.  I don't want to be hurt by food anymore!  Sheesh!  Rediculousness!  I want to eat good, real food and not hurt myself. 

I was thinking today about how my kids are growing.  Their cells are dividing and they are generating the mature bodies they'll live with for many years.  And then it hit me, "I need to feed them real food!  I can't be just giving them the stuff I consider S.Y.C.E (stuff you can eat) because they are used to it and it's convenient and cheaper while I eat real food!"

I have been weaning my kids off the S.Y.C.E diet they are used to and they're actually doing really well shifting over to "real" food.  But I've still caught myself planning to eat something and giving them the S.Y.C.E they want just to appease them.  I don't plan on taking away treats for my kids.  Treats are a pleasure in life that we all, especially kids, can enjoy and be thankful for.   But the treats don't have to hurt us.  So instead of pre-packaged cookies with lots of ingredients my kids and I can't pronounce I'm gonna make them some homemade fudge.  Ingredient list: cocoa, coconut milk, vanilla, and honey.

Again, I don't believe for one second what you eat or don't eat makes any moral difference.  I do believe what I eat and don't eat does have an effect either for good or bad on my body and health.  And as a mom and wife, and the head chef of the house, what I choose to feed my family is going to effect their bodies and health for good or bad.  I want to feed them real food, not just something they can eat.

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