Sunday, July 26, 2009

A little summer reading


I only read a book once a year. I read a book on vacation when my children are completely distracted away from me. While perusing the bookstore I came across the New York Times best seller, “In Defense of Food” by Michael Pollan, which of course I picked up because I am all about defending food. Examining it closer, I realized I couldn’t possibly read it because I hate being told what to eat. I hate the guilt such literature ensues. After all, I am a raging sugarholic and have enabled three more abusers (my children), and I hate the phrase “health food”. After looking at a book about midwives (no more babies please) and the history about the Nation’s capital ( I thought it meant “capital” like assets, but it was the actual building, holy boring). I was lured back into “In Defense of Food”. Yes, I felt incredibly guilty after reading it. However, I really got some things out of it.

The premise of the book is that for the last 30 years our nation has been listening to the advice of nutritionists, instead of our mothers and grandmothers and it has only made us obese and unhealthy. The bombardment of the food industry creating “food like” products and claiming them as “healthy” is hurting us, and we need to get back to eating food. The author gives the example of butter, which is an ancient food. Well all the sudden butter was bad, and margarine was healthy because the experts said so. Turns out that the famous trans-fat margarine was breeding the heart disease.

The tag line of the book is, “Eat food, not too much, mostly plants”. Pretty good motto! Lucky for me, I didn’t feel too guilty because I cook mostly food. Aside from refined flours, and sugars, I use food my recipes, but I would like to fill my pantry with more food, and less food like substance. I believe in whole food. I crave whole food. Wholesome food takes time, but I got time. What is more important teaching my kids good eating habits and setting them up for a healthy life, or having my house clean for when the visiting teachers come over? (they laugh because my house has never been clean when they come over, and I am always in my robe). I have a new focus, not health food (gross), not low fat food (evil), not no-way-my-kids-would-ever-eat-that-are-you-crazy-food, but stuff your grandmother made from scratch food using whole ingredients. I have told my kids that I am no longer buying candy, chips, sugar cereal, egos, gogurts, and any other packaged foods (my 4 year old son Everett is preparing his emancipation papers). I going to make more bread, and more delicious whole food treats from scratch to fill our family belly.

Don’t get me wrong folks, I’m not going granola on ya’. Even though I’m not buying diet coke anymore, I’m still hittin’ sonic for a route 44 when I can. I’m not going to put nuts and dried apricots in the piƱata at my kid’s birthday. I’m just going to try to let the whole foods push the food like substances off the plate a little.

Join me won’t you?

1 comment:

Mum in Bloom said...

I agree! I'm on the beginning of my journey to eat better and feed my kids better. It also has great spin-offs like eating in-season (which just tastes better) usually supports a local farmer, and is more healthful. Feels good even if it sounds "granola" ;o)