Eat Real Food

I seem to be on the radical edge when it comes to cuisine. I regularly encourage people to eat real food. Such a simple statement, but in our culture, it seems foreign to some people. They sometimes look at me like I’m crazy. They think artificial whipped cream, non-dairy creamer and donuts is real food. Obviously, I don’t.

Lately, I have noticed that every time I go to the grocery store I see a woman with 3 or 4 kids hanging off her grocery cart. When I look into their carts, I don’t see anything that I would call real food. No fresh fruit. No fresh vegetables. No fresh meat or fish or fowl. Lots of over-processed, high calorie, low nutrition foods.

Even though my local grocery store has a magnificent selection of fresh food and a huge organic section, the woman’s cart is full of prepared snacks, frozen pizza rolls, soda pop, boxes of macaroni and cheese, cookies, cake, candies, sugary cereals, potato chips, fish sticks, etc. Lots of items that are loaded with chemicals, hydrogenated oils, sugars, high fructose corn syrup, preservatives, artificial flavors and artificial colors.

I could go on naming artificial substitutes for real food, but you should get the idea by now. The kids that are hanging off the grocery cart are starting out their very young lives with very poor nutrition. Is it any wonder that there are so many overweight children? Are we supposed to be surprised by the sharp rises in asthma (auto-immune dysfunction), autism (brain disorder), ADHD and ADD?

Some people have tried to blame vaccinations for some of it. Vaccinations might be a factor, but the crap that parents are allowing, nay– ENCOURAGING their kids to eat is toxic and a constant toxic barrage, in the form of daily diet is not providing the building blocks kids need to be strong and healthy in all ways. If parents smoke around the house, it’s even worse. And if parents create a stressful environment for the kids to grow up in, the negative symptoms will be aggravated.

I know a woman who eats almost no fiber. She considers an occasional glass of orange juice to be enough fruit. An infrequent salad is her “roughage.” She won’t eat any beans or brown rice. When I’ve been with her at restaurants, she eats meat, pasta or Mashed potatoes with extra gravy, and barely touches the broccoli. I’ve watched her eat for nearly 25 years and her diet has not changed. I haven’t gotten personal enough to ask about how it affects getting food through her system, but she has told me she has high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

I’m not claiming to be a perfect eater. I have a Coca Cola or some ice cream once in a while. But I don’t eat “instant” foods or stuff that’s breaded and fried. I also avoid MSG, hydrogenated oils, high fructose corn syrup, nitrates, sulfites, artificial flavors and artificial colors. I eat fresh fruits, fresh veggies (some from my son’s organic garden), salads and some meat, including chicken, pork chops, brown rice and beans. I hard boil six eggs at a time and keep them in a bowl in the fridge in case I get really hungry and need a snack.

It’s not that hard to prepare a simple, nutritious meal. Saute some chicken. Steam some vegetables. Make a quick salad. If you’re busy, dig out the crock pot, throw in the ingredients and come back later. If the kids are old enough, get them to help.

I know that parents of young children are competing against the commercials on the cartoons that make toxic food seem like ambrosia. It’s hard to keep saying no when they beg for junk food. I suggest offering substitutes. With my son, I gave him yogurt instead of ice cream, fresh fruit instead of candy, and real (not instant) oatmeal instead of sugar coated cereals. My son prefers real food over the artificial, nutritionally bleak substitutes.

Even though it is a radical idea to some, I say it’s time to get radical. Eat Real Food!!

Copyright © 2009 by Victoria Young