Of the rest of my life. The beginning of 2015 has heralded the start of my new focus on food. I am wanting to reduce my family’s dependance on processed food and return to a diet more in keeping with our ancestors. Many foods that we consume today would not be recognised by our grandparents generation. We are consuming more and more processed foods and our health is getting worse – coincidence? I think not.
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We consume more sugar, fat, and junk than ever before and we are seeing an increase in diabetes, heart disease, cholesterol etc etc. It’s about the time we focused on what we are eating and make a change from within.
I have done a lot of soul searching over the past few months with some health issues I have. I know a diet based more on whole foods and much less on process food can really only make the situation better.
As I’ve mentioned before my biggest inspiration for this is Lisa Leake at 100daysofrealfood.com so I will be endeavouring to incorporate as many of her ideas as possible on my journey. I’ve been inspired by the changes in health she has seen with her own family when she undertook this process. I will be following her 14 Week Challenge that has started this week and will blog about my experiences about as I go. My kids Miss 15 and Mr 10 aren’t so sure about this pledge but hopefully by taking it slowly they won’t even notice the changes.
I’m normally really good at making a menu plan and following my shopping list but I have become really slack with this over the past months. This means I am just buying whatever and hoping to find inspiration when I get it home. I’ve gotten lazy and it’s leading to lots of waste, can’t be bothered nights, and takeaway. When I menu plan I make much better choices and eat much healthier meals.
Week 1 (14 weeks of mini-pledges)
“Eat a minimum of two different fruits or vegetables (preferably organic) with every breakfast, lunch, and dinner meal.”
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I always try to incorporate fruit or vegetables into our meals but some days it just doesn’t happen as convenience wins out. However, now that this is part of the pledge I will ensure that every meal has at least two fruit or vegetable. I note that Lisa says to eat organic but the reality is on such a low food budget ($100 per week) I really can’t afford the extra cost of organic. I do regularly go to a farmers’ market to purchase my fresh produce and will continue to do this. I am also in the process of setting up my own vegetable garden and am really looking forward to having fresh, homegrown produce in the near future.
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This first pledge is relatively easy for me to do because even though I’m overweight I’ve always eaten a lot of fresh produce. My weight is from the other crap I eat outside of mealtimes and this is what I really want to reduce by doing this pledge.
On this journey I am going to gradually move to a whole food diet and cut out a lot of the processed food. We don’t eat a lot of meat as a. my daughter is vegetarian (but will eat fish) and b. it’s expensive. I do get ham, bacon, and chicken for my son and cook these for him when his sister isn’t home for a meal but for the most part my son and I eat vegetarian too.
One problem I envisage with transitioning to whole foods is that a lot of whole-grain foods are so much more expensive than the processed foods. What I don’t understand is how this can be given that the processing takes more effort? Shouldn’t this make the more processed foods more expensive? I can’t work that one out.
Unfortunately on such a small budget it can sometimes be hard to justify $5 for 1kg of brown rice when you can get 2kg of white rice for $3. I do the bulk of my grocery shopping at Aldi which reduces my bill considerably but unfortunately they don’t offer a large range of whole grain foods. I will endeavour whenever possible to find the whole-grain options but if paying less for white (I know it’s more refined and nowhere near as good for you) means I can feed my kids then……. I’m hoping, however, that by doing this process slowly that eventually I will have it so that I can incorporate whole-grains alot more. I really hope that is the way this pans out!