We'll start at the beginning....
How can we start a conversation about eating good, healthy, and most importantly, tasty food at home?
As a society, we’ve given up taste and nutrition for convenience. What and how we eat, and what tastes we prefer, have been decided for us by a variety of sources. We’ve been taught that tomatoes should all be the same size and shape; we’ve been hypnotized and our food memory cleansed of what a tomato actually looks like, let alone its fragrance. All produce needs to be shiny under a perfect layer of wax or worse. We’ve been told to start our day with orange juice followed by a bowl of processed cereal. Processed meats for lunch usually end up on slices of a ‘bread’ full of preservatives and dough conditioners. The concept of day-old bread has vanished as most loaves from a grocery store will grow penicillin before they actually become stale. Then there’s the eternal question: "What’s for Dinner?"—getting a tasty and nutritious meal on the table is not difficult and shouldn’t be overwhelming.
Mostly, we’ve been manipulated towards sweet, salty, creamy and crunchy. Food scientists have worked hard to add various chemical compounds to food to give the right ‘mouth feel’ such as the bacterial secretion that is xanthum gum. We’ve forgotten what real food tastes like. And the big secret is, real food tastes great. When food is good to start with, you don’t need to alter it with mad science; simple preparation is all that’s required. You don’t need to be a chef. With a little knowledge about food, you can make healthy and appetizing meals, at home or wherever you are.
That’s what Tasting Health is all about.
For centuries, we have known about the link between food and health. Hippocrates, the father of medicine, wrote about it in ancient Greece. Many of our earliest diagnosed illnesses were caused by the absences of nutrients contained in certain foods and were easily cured by correcting the diet. Scurvy, vitamin C deficiency, was cured and prevented with citrus fruits. Scurvy is now being seen again, despite all the ‘enriched’ supermarket products we consume.
So if food equals health, and good food equals good health, then here are the keys to eating well:
- Eat Fresh
- Eat Seasonally
- Eat Locally
- Eat Wisely
By doing this, you can avoid Food Boredom—baked chicken breasts and broccoli every meal gets old and is bad for you. Instead, embrace Food Freedom—as you know more about food, you’ll make better choices and have better health.
What is ‘good’ food? Food should look like food. The more whole the product, the better; it should be minimally processed so you can decide what to do with it. Stay away from highly processed and preservative-laden products. Read labels. If it looks like a chemistry list, put it back. Think about where your food comes from. Shopping at local farmers’ markets, where most produce is picked less than 24 hours before you buy it and the farmers can tell you how its grown, is my preferred choice. You can grow some things yourself. Avoid pesticides. The nutrient content of food is highest when it’s picked, so you’re getting the best nutritional value and taste when it’s fresh.
In the weeks to come, I’ll discuss
- Why it’s better to eat at home.
- How to plan meals for the week.
- Buying and prepping foods for easy use.
I’ll give you simple and delicious recipe ideas for healthy meals and help you learn to prepare them.
It’s all about Tasting Health.