We as Americans are not only lazy - hello, seriously you will wait for 20 mins at the drive through rather than 1. park and walk in to get your food in half the time 2. take that same time to make your own lunch and bring it with you - but we don't pay any attention to what we put in our bodies. And what is the result? Chronic obesity, sugar addiction, constipation(hey, I'm a mom, its always about poop) increased rates of cancer and heart disease compared to the ENTIRE rest of the world!
The best piece of advice in Lisa Leake's book was to go to your pantry, look at the ingredient list on the back of the items you are feeding yourself, your children, heck even your dog!Can you pronounce them all? Do you have any idea how those ingredients effect your body? I am betting not. We were (and sometimes still are) guilty too.
My excuses to sticking with the diet I was feeding my kids included - my daughter is picky (she is), my son already eats pretty much whatever I feed him, he deserves treats (hello, fruit snacks), it takes too much time to read ALL the dang ingredients when I go to the store, I usually buy the 'natural' or 'organic' item anyway.
Truth is, really my kids adapted just fine. We just stopped buying the junk (goodbye, fruit snacks). I learnt that just because the package says 'natural' or 'organic' doesn't mean its good for you (I'm talking to you, Pirate's Booty!). I just kept presenting the same foods to my kids, telling them we didn't buy the junk anymore, and won't be buying it again. My kids developed new favorites - my son loves plain (whole fat) greek yogurt with a large squeeze of lemon, he loves whole wheat tortillas, his favorite foods are cucumbers & sushi; my daughter loves to pick cherry tomatoes and raspberries off the plants in the backyard, she loves red peppers, she prefers whole wheat noodles to conventional.
We try to keep to Lisa Leake's rules when it comes to the food we buy -
1. 5 ingredients or less
2. Organic produce and meat
3. Grass fed, pasture raised dairy, meat & eggs
4. Full fat (whole) dairy products
5. Whole wheat bread and pasta products
This is easier than you would think. And what we found amazing was that we actually save money! We stick to the outside lanes of the supermarket, avoiding all of the temptation of chips, crackers, fruit snacks, etc. We don't feel like our kids are missing out at all - we allow them to eat whatever they want at birthday parties, and God knows Grandma feeds them all manner of crap!
However, we have noticed a few things about our kids - their behavior has improved; they are more willing to try new foods; they make better food choices; their interest in gardening and beekeeping (we have a hive) and nature has increased; they are more active; they sleep better. All of these changes have cemented our view that we are doing the right thing.
Our next step is to begin to trim down our consumption meat. Neither of our children really like meat anyway, but both love fish. We have this obsession as Americans that we must have this 'protein', paleo fads haven't helped this. The truth is that you can find just as much protein outside of a meat source. There are abundant theories that our excessive consumption of red meat has increased the incidence of cancer, obviously heart disease, and severe environmental damage.
I am aware this is a controversial subject, and I don't judge how others choose to feed their families, but my husband and I find this subject fascinating. How do you feed your family? Any tips and tricks to enhancing the path that we are on?