HEALTHY EATING – ONE BITE AT A TIME.

So this is often the bone of contention or rather the bone of judgement at kids parties. Mama bears stand around the table and start that conversation. You know the one. The one where healthy eating and lifestyles are discussed.

It’s often the conversation that leaves me with conflicted thoughts:

 

– “Am I doing enough for my family, enough nutrition? “,

– “Damn, why didn’t I know that about processed foods ?, I dont read enough”.

– “What on earth is going on – gmo, animal rennett, soya lectin, hormones, free range, organic, banting, sugar, sugar and some more sugar?”

 

I am left in a quagmire of anxious tension, guilt and shock , and all the while telling myself to calm down.

 

Yes I believe it’s true that big business has infested our food with gmo, hormones and everything else that shouldn’t be on a plate – to increase profits.

 

And yes,  the idea that our kids are reaching puberty earlier because of food content, is entirely plausible. And sure I believe that our bodies are what we consume – and so our kids may be prone to certain diseases, allergies and health risks, even if only realized later in life.

 

All of this is true – but how do I counter it?

 

I met awesome parents over the weekend whose son had his first taste of caffeine after 18. They live in a sugar free household – all of this is out of choice. Their 15 year old refuses any fizzy drinks because she has been taught this from very young.

 

So where is my family in all of this????

 

I am going to tackle this problem in bite sized pieces.

 

Bite one: Avoid fast food junk. Definition of junk food store: a place where they sell food that doesn’t disintegrate even if left laying underneath your car seat for 1 week

 

Bite 2: Avoid processed food and consume real food.Since most of our food is processed I will start with the basics: no processed cheese and meats (boy oh boy doesn’t the mist reent Listeria outbreak prove this point). Eat fresh veggies and fruit.

 

Bite 3: Water is the preferred beverage of choice. Love it. Drink it. And drink it purified as often as is possible.

 

Bite 4: Avoid food with added hormones and gmo.

 

Bite 5:  Avoid sweeties and everything else in that family where possible – whether solid or liquid.

 

Bite 6: Enjoy what’s not on this list so my munchkins can learn to enjoy it.

 

Bite 7: Load lunch boxes full of the good stuff.

 

Note to self: when you get it wrong and the plan goes pear shaped – as it will at parties, holidays and grandparent visits, chill out! This is  process not a test. One day at a time, one bite at a time. Phew!!!!

 

ONE PLATE AT A TIME

I am nowhere near the super mums of our time – the ones that have galvanized their whole homes into perfectly working ecosystems in oneness with the planet. I’m trying, and it takes a lot of time – time to label read, to unlearn, learn again and to make different choices.

 

In the homes of some of these mums, they eat organic whole foods (many of them pick from their own gardens). They use glass – only glass, they drink purified water, they only drink water!!!!. They bant or graze or???? They live in sugar free homes and their kids embrace it. They consume hormone free milk and free range poultry. Their breakfasts and most other meals are gmo free. They wear pure cotton or pure wool. They only use organic soap, shampoo and bubble bath. They use bicarbonate of  soda or aluminium free deodorant on their arm pits. They use clothe nappies and they gym as a family. They use natural medicine. They switch the wifi off at night and they recycle. Phew !!!! I’m exhausted just reading it all aloud.

 

They read labels – oh yes!!! And they KNOW stuff. They know how the processed foods and all the chemicals make the brain tick, the body grow and the hormones do what they’re not supposed to. Shoo they know … and they put me to “agha shame”.

 

Ha !!!!! I mean we still do junk food. Writing this makes me feel like I’m telling a nasty secret. And while I’m confessing, I might as well tell you that my kids love sugar. We try to keep our home “sweet free” on ordinary days (which are weekdays and weekends) but it only lasts until granny comes to visit. They even call granny the “sweetie shop”.  I give my kids hot dogs for lunch. Broken down into content language, it is nothing more than processed chicken on a carb with little or no nutritional value. Some super mums I know, give their kids hummus, cucumber and biltong for lunch or smoked salmon with slices of tomatoes and cream cheese. Like wowsers!!!!!

 

We’re not there yet!!! We do set out healthy snacks in help yourself jars of biltong, nuts and whatever is trending. We use a water purifier and drink plenty of water. We recycle. We also try to use natural products on our bodies.

 

We do plenty of fresh fruit and veggies. I buy them old school from a green grocer – where there aren’t any labels. So admittedly, i don’t how they’re farmed.

 

We avoid processed foods. We do make a point of buying hormone free milk, free range eggs and try to go organic as far as possible. We steam our veg and oven bake our proteins on most nights. When oil is needed we use olive or coconut oil as our first choice. Why – because I agree – food content is not what it used to be and the human body is not made to consume processed food and chemicals. I believe all the rubbish we consume will show up adversely down the line, in our health.

 

But hey the conflict is that a wrap can’t substitute a home made roti and rye bread cant substitute a fat cake. Baked sweet potatoe strips with a grilled piece of meat can’t replace a Russian special seasoned with masala and a dash of vinegar from your local Akhalwayas. Yum!!!  Yes I know it’s bad for your health. There goes that ‘nasty secret’ feeling again.

 

So what do I do to give my family optimal nutrition and a healthy lifestyle. I take it in stages, one  purchase and one plate at a time – while I label read, unlearn, learn again and make different choices.