Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Chaos & Confusion in the Cupboard

I am reading a fascinating book, In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan that is making me question my eating in a way that I never have.

I like to think that I am a fairly healthy eater. At times I am a little wacky at what I put in my body but I also clearly indulge with brownies, gelato and beverages, often. No judgement! Pollan says that most of American culture has become a little too obsessed with healthy eating. I know that I go to three separate grocery stores so I can get my Ezekial Live Cereal, homemade Peanut Butter and Brown Quinoa in bulk. I eat organic veggies and little meat. I think to some this could be seen as obsessive but to me it is the norm.

The book explains that we (the health obsessed) eat for the nutrients not the food. As a culture we are positioning foods as healthy but adding nutrients like Omega-3 or pro-biotics to foods that do not typically have them. I find myself victim to this... I am a sucker for enhanced Omega-3. The problem with this is that our bodies may or may not process these manufactured nutrients.

This book, though not rocket science, has muddied up my views on soy, nuts and overall consumption.

Seven main concepts that I took away:
1- Look at label. Less is more in terms of ingredients
2- Avoid products that have health claims. If they have to "claim" it... well, you get the point.
3- Shop open markets or the peripheries of grocery. Stay away from the box.
4- Eat mostly plants, especially leaves.
5- Eat wild foods when you can, including meat.
6- Eat as the Asians do... or the French... or the Indians. Anyone except us dumb, unhealthy Americans.
7- Pay more, eat less, eat slow and with someone. Cook and enjoy your food...with wine.
That's advice I can take. So, if anyone is up for dinner, in honor of Pollan, I will cook wild and leafy foods with the promise good tunes and great wine and slow eating! Bon a Petit!


Toylady said...

I wanna come! I'll be there in 6 hours! :)

Katherine said...

That book sounds fantastic! I will have to run out and get it. It's been so hard with a new little one getting back on track with healthy eating. I am looking for as much inspiration as I can.

Caroline said...

I'm reading his other book, The Omnivore's Dilemma now. Everyone should read this book too!