New Year, New Food

You missed me. I know, I missed you too. There’s a number of reasons for my lack of posting, these are (in order): Christmas, holidays, laziness, back at work, wedding (not mine), sickness (mine), and finally; moving house (both me and the man, although not together).

With a New Year comes a new (and I think improved) attitude toward food. From purchasing, growing, cooking to making choices. I know you all love reviews and recipes most of all, but I have been encouraged to also put a bit of my food-ilosphy down on the blog too, for good measure.

So here goes:

The start: why I embarked on my ‘eat for health’ crusade. My Auntie was diagnosed with terminal cancer, 2 years ago in April. A huge shock for the family and a life-altering diagnosis for my Auntie, it was also a blow for me and my sister: breast cancer is prevalent on both sides of the family. One in two men and one in three women will have cancer at some point in their lives. What can you do about it? This.

So I asked myself, HOW can you improve your diet? A lot is common sense, but delving a lot deeper can take you in some interesting directions. I asked Google  the question “I know X is good for me, but why?” (and several thousand derivations of) and began clicking. It started as full-blown research into greens, which included for good measure, reading the entirety of Robyn’s blog.

I devoured websites, books, articles, nutrition information, to understand what constitutes the best diet for my health (you all know diet means ‘what you eat’ rather than a plan to lose weight!) But most formative was my research into Animal Proteins (China Study), Green Smoothies and greens, which lead me to Raw Foodism, Whole Foodism and eventually, Michael Pollan and organic, locally grown, FOOD.

What do I mean by food? Well, MP tells me that food is anything that my Grandma (or Great G’ma) would recognise as food (eg not Twinkies for sure). Easy, or so you thought. Once you flip over the packet you find out what is really in whole wheat bread. So what do you do now?

That’s easy: stop buying things in packets. Learn to cook everything from scratch. Don’t eat those things in the packets you can’t pronounce (you won’t believe how many of them come from either sugar or corn – and I’m not talking the nice table corn people can actually eat). Most of all, don’t fall for this kind of crap:

(Rev milk container, I saw this this morning!)

Yes, when you start removing things, or changing a food, you are deleting a lot more than just the ‘fat’. Nature is far more complex than we could ever know. Believing we are above this is called reductionist science. It’s also the reason that taking vitamins doesn’t really work.

So what do you eat? You can follow Michael Pollan’s ideas, Whole Foodism, Slow Foodism, you can shop at markets, buy organic (or not), change the way you shop (nice graph), get more sustainable (polyculture farming), get local (CSA), as well as be realistic at the same time.

The Resolution

My ‘war’ in the New Year is on refined carbohydrates and refined sugars. There are definitely degrees to which your food has been played with/modified/refined and the ultimate goal is to keep processing and refining to a minimum.

When you’re trying to get a food blog up and happening, it’s impossible to cut them out completely, so my NY resolution is to minimise them and try not to cook with refined ingredients in so far as possible.

You can substitute honey for sugar and use whole grains. On the weekend I made waffles with oat flour (I blended a cup of oats!) and whole wheat flour, eggs, butter, milk (raw, I’m the biggest fan of non-pasturised, non-homogenised) and yoghurt (same deal), honey, baking powder, cinnamon. No preservatives, no sugar. Served it with maple syrup, blueberries and strawberries. And to be honest, they were REALLY good!

Recipe (I substituted with some oat flour and added an extra cup of flour as the waffles weren’t ‘rising’ in the waffle maker)


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