"Crunchy?" I asked, perplexed.
"Yeah. You know. Crunchy-granola, organic, earth-mother, healthy food NUTS." he responded. I grinned, because it was obvious he was looking to us for some sympathy. Despite being in a library, I busted out laughing when the worst thing Dan could tell me his wife was doing to him was insisting they use a Midwife and Doula for baby #2!
"Hey, I was skeptical at first, but you may want to try it. Its only improved MY quality of life, and the food is great! - for the most part!" Kyle chimed in. Dan looked at me and his eyes widened.
"Dear lord... you've gone crunchy too!" he gasped. And me, in my 'stir the pot' mentality, said,
"Sure if you want to put it THAT way. I need to catch up with your wife on Facebook so we can share crunchy notes!" and giggled at my friend's involuntary shudder. He placed his big hand on Kyle's shoulder and said,
"You have my sympathies brother. We could start a support group? Maybe meet at McDonalds?"
"No, no I actually am enjoying the journey." was my husbands cheerful response.
Dan shook his head and muttered something about brainwashing.
I can't blame him though because I was the same way. If we hadn't had some health scares I'd be right on board with Dan and giving him the sympathy he was looking for. I turned my nose up at the organic section at Kroger and dismissed it as something for 'rich people who hate themselves.' To be honest, I'm still trying to figure out ways to avoid the Organic section of Kroger simply because its so cotton-picking expensive! (That's part of the reason why we have a vegetable garden!)
Ok so before I get side-tracked on several other rants I could easily get sucked into about the Food Industry and people not wanting to educate themselves, I'll finish my blog 'series' on why were are getting green, gross and apparently crunchy. And for those of you who were curious, I haven't ordered any of the weird things I mentioned several posts ago (like seaweed and mushrooms) YET because #1. I wanted to order some Essential Oils from that company and when flammable liquids are part of the package, shipping jacks WAY up and #2. I'm in this 'eeny meeny minee moe' phase in learning how to grocery shop healthy. Which thing do I stock up on this paycheck? Soup bones or arrowroot powder? They both will last a while but which will I use first? And while I'm stocking up how do I make sure to not spend ALL our grocery money so that we have some cash leftover for the weekly things we buy? Gu-uh. I know if it were easy then everyone would be doing it. But living a Nourishing Traditions lifestyle AND a Dave Ramsey lifestyle at the same time is C.H.A.L.L.E.N.G.I.N.G!!!!
I DO however have a glass bowl on my counter top with Sourdough bread Starter fermenting. I am VERY excited about it.
Did I say I was going to avoid a rant? Hm. I think I just got sucked into a budgeting rant. Sorry! Ok back to our New Food Reasonings :
First, you need to know that by incorporating the healthy fats and oils into our diet, Kyle and i have actually LOST WEIGHT just by the diet change (an added bonus is that our workouts go much better, longer and our muscles don't feel as sore or tired at the end of it) This seems so illogical until you think about it for a minute: Why do our bodies need food? We eat food for two reasons.
1. Food is essential for energy, which we need to live
2. Food tastes good and our tongue is a powerful master!
Lets look at point one first. How does our body get energy from food? From digestion! you say. Yes, but which aspects of the food do our bodies digest? Our digestive system is designed to break down the food and separate the good stuff - vitamins and minerals, sugars, carbohydrates, fats, and proteins - from the bad stuff - toxins, useless carbs and fibers. If it gets too much of what it doesn't need at that time - such as fats, sugars, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals, then it stores them up. Vitamins and minerals go into the immune system and make it stronger for when illness attacks and the sugars, fats and carbohydrates get stored in body fat.
Now modern diets say that we must avoid ALL fatty things and ALL carbohydrates and ALL real sugars and replace them with foods labeled 'diet.' Diet coke, diet margarine, diet 'sugar's such as sweet-and-low and equal. And we must work out. Often, regularly, and cheerfully.
1. simple carbs have very very low nutritional value, OR the nutritional value is staked onto one side. Your body gets too much of one thing it needs and not enough of another. So its depleted in one area and stores up too much in another area. Hence too many bagels with cream cheese = a larger pants size. In addition, your body cannot extract the nutrients from carbs if it doesn't have enough of the right vitamins already stored up. If it can't digest it now, it either throws it away or stores it for later.
2. Your body NEEDS good fats - which contain high amounts of proteins and vitamins - to regenerate cells. If you omit proteins and healthy fats out of your diet, you have nothing left to rebuild and repair those muscles you are working so hard at the gym! (Thus you may be skinny but you cells can't repair or regenerate, which leaves you open to injury or chronic illness at the worst and at the best very wrinkly skin and stretch marks!)
On the opposite side of this point is that fat and sugar substitutes have either been damaged on a molecular level in the extraction process, AND in the case of margarine have had their cells and molecules changed so many times and had so many additives mixed in (margarine's natural color is off-grey and tastes foul so they add dyes and flavorings to it) that chemically it closely resembles plastic.
3. Your body CANNOT PROCESS ASPARTAME. Yes it is true sugar is not healthy for you. It is true it increases pant and dress sizes, and it is true if you use the diet sugars you will - for a while - see your weight go down. The reason why you see your weight drop temporarily is because your body doesn't know what to do with the fake sugars. It has no nutritional value whatsoever. It does not give you energy at all like sugar does. So what does your body do with it? It stores it away in fat. Because it thinks, 'well, whatever this is I can't use it now. Maybe it'll come in handy for later.' But whenever 'later' comes, the body goes to its stores and supplies and says, "Well I know what THIS fat molecule does. I'll take THAT one. This equal stuff looks pretty, all blue and sparkly on my Fat Supply Shelves, but I still don't know what to do with it! Maybe one day..." and leaves it there. Well our bodies need to do 'spring cleaning' like we do with our houses. Thats why working out is helpful, it stimulates using up stored fats and cleaning off the 'fat supply shelves' and giving them a good dusting. BUT, your body can't do that with aspartame or sugar-substitutes. So they just stay there. What happens when something stays on your shelf at home? Yes it collects dust! What does dust look like in your body? TOXINS. What do toxins do? CAUSE PROBLEMS. They cause diseases!
Now that we've got all THAT cleared up, believe me when I say that incorporating natural, healthy fats and sugars into your diet is the way to go!
I said there were two things to note, right? The first was that by eating counter-intuitively - or counter-modern-culturally by incorporating fats, we're actually losing weight.
The second thing to note is this: I know lots and lots of people who have had to change their diets for health reasons, and then get very snobby about food around people. They are kind of condescending or just plain rude. We don't want to be like that. Yes we still eat out with friends, and yes we still go to friends' houses for food. And no we don't expect them to cook for us according to our guidelines.
Here's what I very strongly believe: God cares about how we eat. He dedicated a lot of Mosaic law to food guidelines and Jesus taught a lot while eating or feeding people. However Peter had a vision whose main message was that he needed to stop being a food snob. (Acts 10:9-16)
I don't want to become a Food Snob. Yes I am VERY passionate about diet right now. I am very particular about how I grocery shop right now. And if you come to our house for dinner, you'll probably eat something thats cooked in a way you haven't eaten it before or you'll have something you've just never had before - like dandelion greens in the salad. However I want to respect the fact that not everyone feels convicted to get off the Standard American Diet, and not everyone cooks according to our guidelines. So we eat whats put in front of us at other people's houses, we say thank you for deserts that people give us, and we go to restaurants and enjoy the chips and salsa appetizer that people buy us.
But we HAVE noticed whenever we do 'cheat' our tummies are rumbling all evening and its harder for us to get to sleep. So if you do invite us over and I don't eat a lot, its not because your cooking isn't scrumdelicious. Its just because I know if I pig out as much as I want to I will PAY for it later!!
Join me next time to talk about Herbs and Essential Oils!!!