For the most part we eat a healthy diet around here. We raise all of our meat and I prepare most of the meals from scratch.
But then there are things like potato chips, cheese crackers in the shape of fish, and honey nut cheerios. To say we ate whole and real foods would be a lie.
When you begin to really read the labels of packaged foods, you see that sugar is in almost everything. The problem with sugar is that it is highly inflammatory and is probably the biggest issues that leads to illness in the US.
I am not just talking about white sugar or high fructose corn syrup. Those yummy fruits, like grapes, are loaded with sugar. Yes fruits are whole foods, but sugar is sugar. Honey and maple syrup? Those are better than granulated sugar, but it must still be consumed lightly.
Because I am always looking for new ways to challenge myself and to load myself down with more work. I decided to try and switch us over to more real foods and whole foods. I blame Pinterest. I saw a pin come across my feed about *real food* and it got the wheels turning.
The past week we have started our food journey. The basic premise is that you only consume whole foods and any packaged items must have 5 ingredients or less. Processed foods are out.
Now, I didn't throw any food out because that is wasteful, plus you have to sort of wean your kids and yourself off the processed food you love so much. (I may or may not be hoarding the last bag of potato chips.)
Take a look in your pantry and see how much processed foods are in there. It is amazing when you actively look for such foods, how they have accumulated into even the best diets.
So here is what we have on the menu for the week for dinner:
Whole wheat pizza
Crock Pot Chicken Tacos
Baked Spaghetti with salad and artisan bread
Braised Beef with veggies and rice
Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Rosemary Encrusted Roast and Roasted Veggies
Ricotta Cheese Pancakes
Lunch has consisted of leftovers, egg salad and whole wheat bread, and sliced roast on pita bread.
Breakfast has been muffins, oatmeal, smoothies, and eggs with toast.
Sounds simple, right? Looks like I have it all figured out and organized, right? Well, let me tell you that I have one word for this meal plan: EXHAUSTING!!!!
I have been in the kitchen everyday for long stretches, and that is on top of making cheeses almost each day. My wheat grinder has been over drive and the oven has been baking foods almost non-stop.
Breakfast has been the toughest because I love having cereal around. It's simple and the kids can make it themselves. When the mornings include milking cows, a large breakfast is not something that happens here.
I did make some granola cereal and the kids loved it, however it only lasted one day. Making enough cereal for 9 people can be daunting.
I also made some flavored coffee creamer, and I will admit that it is quite yummy. I doubled the recipe and it is lasting a good while.
Lunch meat is another item to go because it is heavily processed, so I cooked a roast and sliced it for sandwich meat. I have a freezer full of grass fed beef and it is good to use it up.
Yesterday I went to the local Chattanooga farmer's market to buy strawberries, thinking I could make jam and let the kids snack on berries. Wouldn't you know that all the farmers but one was sold out within the first hour? I bought a few from the farmer who still had some, but they were overly ripe and not good for snacking. Instead I made crepes and whipped some fresh cream to add to the strawberries for a dessert. We were all thrilled with that scenario.
Awe, yes...my first world problem.
I intend to stick with this and see it through the difficult adjustment period. Devin and I do go on *dates* once a week and I will be able to order and eat what I want (does that sandwich come with chips? Can I order extra chips?????)
So tell me, how have you adjusted real foods or are you thinking about making the switch? Ideas and suggestions are always welcome!!!
Happy Monday Ya'll!