My Journey to Whole Foods
When we got married, I knew how to cook. I mean, I knew the very basics. I could pull out a recipe and follow it. But I didn’t really know how to cook. I didn’t have this natural instinct or skill of throwing together meals and recipes. I realized after watching my mom that she could just rummage in the fridge, pull out random ingredients, and make a delicious meal in minutes. This is the skill that I lacked and I knew that as a homemaker I needed to get to that point!
I still can’t make up killer recipes very well, but I have come a long way in these 3 1/2 years. As I began my journey of cooking, I bought cookbooks, browsed the internet (and later Pinterest), and learned all the new recipes that I could. But I still lacked something. I lacked the basic goal behind my cooking. I wanted to make yummy and healthy meals for my family, but what “healthy” meant seemed to change with the latest news headline.
How many grams of fat and carbs is too much? Is skim milk healthy or not? Sweet and Low is the way to eat healthy without sugar right?? It all seemed so confusing so I generally tried to make healthy things like beans, chicken, and “whole wheat” pasta. I was making a concerted effort to feed my family healthy! But I was wrong. I wasn’t cooking healthy. I was pumping my family full of sugar, sodium, and chemicals.
Around this same time we found out that my husband has high blood pressure and high cholesterol. We had suspected it for some time, it runs REALLY high in his family. His grandfather died at 41 from a heart attack so we knew that we always needed to be sensitive to it.
We found out for sure that my hubby has high blood pressure and cholesterol in the summer of 2011. The doctor sent us home with a low sugar low sodium diet pamphlet and suddenly I was on my own figuring out how to lower the sodium and sugar for my family.
Our doctor recommended a diabetic diet so I began researching. I got a diabetic cookbook and started searching online. I got the same advice: switch to artificial sweeteners, don’t use table salt to season food, ect.
And then I began reading food labels. When I went in to buy my “healthy” canned black beans and vegetables I was shocked to find out how much sodium was in each can and often loads of unnecessary and harmful chemicals.
I had to find another way to eat
The shocking news of what is really in our food started to sink in. I wasn’t really feeding my family very healthy. The “healthy,” more expensive whole wheat bread I was buying every week was chalk full of sodium, chemicals I can’t pronounce, and lots of SUGAR! I wasn’t sure what to do, since even the “healthy” alternatives seemed to be so unhealthy! So I grabbed my iPad one night and started searching ways to eat healthy.
I started with looking for recipes on making dried beans and homemade bread. And a whole new world opened up to me. I stumbled upon a ” real food“ blog late that night while finding out how to make dried beans in the crockpot. What I found was fascinating! There was this whole diet out there that focused on eating healthy food that wasn’t processed or refined. I found a diet that didn’t include un-needed sugar, chemicals, and other toxic things. And better yet, I found a diet that is easy to follow and one that isn’t a “fad”.
You see, the real/whole foods diet has been around for centuries. Adam and Eve were eating the whole food diet, not Weight Watchers. Our great great Grandmothers were feeding their family the whole food diet, not this processed junk we pass off as good food today. From that night I started devouring what it means to eat a whole foods diet. I have learned so much along the way.
Had it not been for a few blogs sharing this diet, I may still not know about it today. But even with the resources I could find, I was left doing hours upon hours of research trying to really figure out what healthy eating means. I hope to make that part easier for you. All month long we will be tackling all the basic issues of what a whole foods diet is and I’ll throw in some fantastic recipes along the way as well.
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