My November 2, 2023 post was titled “Is There One Food You shouldn’t Eat?” Great, but what should we eat? This article is not “eat an avocado every day for better health” or any other specific food for that matter. It is about food quality in general.
The amount of information in print and on the internet about what you should or should not eat is staggering. For much of it, you can find an opposing viewpoint. I believe you cannot go wrong if you focus on food quality.
Some people like to dive in the deep end of the pool, others go down the steps and wade in slowly. Here are some ways to up your food quality wherever you are on that journey and whichever approach fits your level of challenge.
· Dive into the deep end by avoiding all packaged foods. These are pre-cooked packaged meats, frozen microwavable meals, canned soups, boxed cereal, etc. – most everything that is heat and eat.
· Wade in by eating less packaged foods and when you do, eat the ones with the shorter list of ingredients.
Eat it like it came from the ground.
· Dive into the deep end by buying organic fruit and vegetables in the produce department and eat all of the edible parts. Don’t peel apples or carrots, don’t cut the stems off broccoli. Eat nuts and seeds. Don’t worry about buying frozen when out of season or for backup.
· Wade in by getting some vegetables in smoothies or in dried form. Eat nut butter.
If you eat meat.
· Dive into the deep end by eating grass fed, grass finished meat rather than feed lot meat. You are not only what you eat, but what you eat ate.
· Wade in by purchasing meat in the meat department rather than the pre-cooked meat in the frozen meal section.
· Dive into the deep end by eating fruit. If you have been eating SAD (Standard American Diet) with a high amount of processed sugar, berries may not taste sweet at first, but once you cut back or eliminate sugar from your diet your taste buds will adjust, and fruit will taste sweet.
· Wade in by baking your cake, frosting, brownies, and cookies from scratch rather the box which contains hydrogenated oils so it can stay on the shelf for months.
These points are for when you are cooking at home. You have much less control when you eat out. Restaurants and fast-food joints have only one goal – to get you to come back and spend more money. For restaurants, that can mean a dining experience in addition to the food which is good. However, for the food, they may not care about the quality of the fats or the amount of sugar or sodium in their dishes. So, the more you cook at home, the more control you have over food ingredients.