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Is your family eating real food?
You may not even realize that you are eating “fake food”, but unfortunately, many of us are!
Processed meats, cereals, and pre-packaged foods that are filled with additives, preservatives, artificial flavorings, coloring and other yuck!
This “fake food” leaves us feeling tired, sluggish, depressed and sick!
Are you ready for a change?
Try these 5 easy steps to get started…
Real Food for Real Mamas
There is nothing like becoming a mother to motivate us towards better health.
Eating a healthier, real food diet is perhaps the surest way to improve your family’s health!
“Let food be thy medicine” is not only a popular cliche, it is absolutely true!
I’d like to take a break from the usual baby theme to talk about this topic that is relevant to every mom.
So, whether you are a new pregnant mom or you’ve been a mom or grandma for several years already, this post is for you!
You may have heard the buzz surrounding “real food” lately.
It is becoming quite a popular term referring to unprocessed, healthy food.
While eating healthy food is not new, the movement to improve our health by eating foods that are either organic, minimally processed and/or in their whole natural state is gaining momentum.
Healing Chronic Illness with Real Food
My family has used real, nutrient-dense food to heal all sorts of ailments from seasonal allergies to Lyme’s disease without having to resort to conventional drugs.
After making a decision to remove toxic convenience food from our diet completely, and replacing it with organic, nutrient-dense food, we witnessed remarkable results in a very short time.
For example, my husband, who previously suffered from chronic fatigue due to allergies and food sensitivities, no longer experiences fatigue or allergy symptoms!
Similarly, two of my children who were diagnosed with Lyme’s disease, are both relatively symptom-free after focusing their healing protocols on a healing foods diet.
Another exciting recent example was with my daughter’s morning sickness.
Unfortunately, she experienced some pretty awful nausea with her last pregnancy.
I encouraged her to try increasing soluble fiber in her diet as discussed in this post, and she experienced dramatic improvement.
In fact, it wasn’t until she stopped eating the suggested amount of legumes in her diet, that she noticed the nausea returning.
She immediately returned to the diet and felt relief again.
Real food to the rescue!
In addition to a nourishing real-food diet, my family also uses homeopathy to promote health and healing.
I have written a post about using homeopathic remedies for pregnancy, childbirth and infant care. For more information about that, check out this post!
I also HIGHLY recommend checking out this website for information on how to use homeopathy to heal your family.
The author is a very skilled homeopathic practitioner and a great lady too!
She is also a huge advocate for real, nutrient-dense food.
Food is Medicine
I am a firm believer that everything we need for good health and healing is found in nature.
Food is medicine because it is a gift from our Creator.
God intended food to be nourishing and healing to our bodies.
Instead, many modern foods are full of chemicals, additives and preservatives that stress out our immune system and promote sickness.
“The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison.”
This famous quote is from Dr. Ann Wigmore, a natural health practitioner and pioneer in natural health. I whole-heartily agree with her statement!
Our bodies are designed to heal themselves and the many nutrients found in real food, such as antioxidants, vitamins, fiber, digestive enzymes, etc. promote normal bodily functions and support the body’s self-healing and detoxification processes.
What is “Real Food”?
Defining “real food” is going to be a bit different for everyone, but I would agree with those who say that real food is food in its natural, unprocessed state.
It can also be food that is easily prepared in our own kitchens. So for example, foods such as bread, butter, or yogurt.
We often purchase these foods ready-made, but since they are minimally processed or not in need of factory-processing, I would consider them in the “real food” category as well. (Make sure you check the labels, though, and only purchase those without chemical preservatives, additives or coloring)
An easy way to shop for unprocessed food is to shop around the perimeter of the grocery store… so think produce section, dairy section, meat section etc.
Foods in this category also would be foods without an ingredient list. Why? Because they are the only ingredient and do not need an ingredient list! (meat, milk, vegetable, fruit, nuts, legumes, rice etc.)
Also, think of foods that you can either grow yourself or purchase at a farmer’s market.
I would take things a step further and encourage you to buy all your meat, produce and dairy from local farmers, if possible!
Not only is this the freshest and most nutritious, but it supports and encourages sustainable, organic farming practices.
Remember, as consumers, we vote with our dollars, so a vote for local, organically-raised food, is a vote against big food companies that give us poor quality, mass-produced, highly-processed “fake” food.
Let’s Get Started – 5 Baby Steps!
It can be overwhelming at first to begin eating a healthier diet, but remember to start slowly and take “baby steps!”.
Where do you begin?
If you are a beginner, check out these baby steps to help you get started!
1. Read Labels!
The best place to start is by reading labels.
Use google and search for those ingredients that you cannot pronounce. They are probably chemical flavor enhancers, preservatives, or other food additives that your family does NOT need!
Better yet, buy foods that do not have need of an ingredient list, since they are the only ingredient!
2. Shop the Perimeter of your Grocery Store
Look for single-ingredient foods, such as meat, produce and milk.
Avoid foods that have a long list of non-food ingredients added to them!
3. Learn to Prepare Foods Yourself
Avoid pre-packaged, convenience foods such as frozen pizzas, frozen entrees, pre-cooked or canned beans or sauces.
Focus on one thing at a time, though, and learn how to prepare it.
Don’t allow yourself to get overwhelmed by trying to take on too much all at once.
Remember…. baby steps!
I like to cook in bulk.
For example, when I make a big batch of chili or homemade pizza, I make extra for the freezer. Then when I have need of an easy meal, it serves as a quick, convenient dinner that is still healthy and nourishing!
When shopping for items such as beans, rice or other whole grains, try to buy them in their dry state and soak and cook them yourself.
Soaking and cooking your own grains and legumes will make them far more digestible and greatly increase their nutrient absorption!
For more information on how to properly soak and cook beans and grains, check out this post from one of my favorite healthy food bloggers!
4. Get Rid of the Bad Stuff!
Throw out food in your pantry or refrigerator that doesn’t meet your new standard.
I know what you’re thinking. You spent your hard-earned money on some of those “foods”.
The truth is, they are not really nourishing food anyway! Your family will be better off without the added chemicals and toxins.
Also, consider phasing out boxed cereals and other packaged convenience foods. They are not only nutritionally lacking, but they may be downright dangerous to your family’s health.
This post explains the reasons for avoiding these highly processed foods.
5. Follow the 80-20 Rule!
Think 80%-20% as a general rule.
When you are starting out, don’t beat yourself up for eating something that is not a healthy, nutrient-dense food.
Instead, aim to consume 80% of your diet at home from real nourishing food. Then an occasional splurge when you are out will not be so bad.
However, if you are trying to heal from chronic illness, you may wish to be more strict with your food choices.
Either way, DO NOT get overwhelmed or quit because you have not been 100% faithful to your new eating resolutions.
This is not an “all or nothing” thing!
It is a lifestyle change that requires forming new habits. This sometimes takes time.
Remember…. baby steps!
Ready for the Next Step?
Are you looking for more advanced steps to improve your family’s health?
Check out this post if you are ready for more advanced steps or if you are serious about improving your family’s health naturally.
Share Your Story!
Also, if you have experienced improved health in your family by switching to a healthier diet, please share your success stories in the comments!
I hope to encourage everyone who is struggling towards better health with these posts, not overwhelm them!
Thanks in advance for sharing your stories!
*Disclaimer – The information in the post is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be medical advice. I am only sharing my family’s journey towards better health. Please make sure that you talk with your doctor if you are experiencing serious health concerns.