Food should be tasty and nourishing, providing our bodies with the nutrients we need to fuel us up for our daily activities. Traditionally grown and prepared foods, offer a variety of flavors, textures and nuances, it also offers all the nutrients the body needs to function properly. Unfortunately, fast foods and microwaveable meals are quickly replacing our traditional heritage meals. We live in the age of canned beans, maize and tomatoes, lunch in a box and 5 mins microwavable meals. Most of these convenience foods have been refined or processed, are loaded with artificial flavors, taste enhancers, sugars and lots of salt. The result: loss of taste for real freshly made healthy food flavors, huge consumption of saturated fats, oils, refined carbohydrates, salt, sugar, artificial flavors and taste enhancers, larger portion sizes which together lead to an increase in overweight and obesity and obesity-related diseases like hypertension, stroke and heart diseases. That is why we want to encourage you to #EatRealFood for 30 days. This challenge is as simply as ABC; trade convenience food for real freshly made heritage food. Here are 5 reasons why you need to eat real food (and maybe make real food consumption part of your Lifestyle).
1. Real food will nourish your body.
Real food does not only contain all the nutrients your body needs for proper functioning, real food when traditionally prepared offers a variety of enjoyable flavors, tastes, textures and nuances. Natural traditional spices and herbs arouse your senses and your taste buds making eating a delight. Eating pasture-raised meats for example, offer good sources of vitamins, minerals and good fats. Fresh fruits and vegetables consumption especially those in season offer the highest amounts of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Whole grains when properly prepared offer tons of micronutrients. Proteins from Whole and fresh milk offers vitamins, minerals and linoleic acid good for bones and teeth. Fresh fish, poultry, beans and peas also offer the proteins our bodies Need, greatly and positively enhancing your health and wellbeing.
2. Real food is not processed.
Real food is unprocessed, unrefined, and whole. It has not been stripped of its inherent, natural nutrients and nutritional value which happens during industrial processing. Consuming whole, unrefined foods, you feed your body with natural, real nutrients present in the food. Eating whole real foods creates a satisfaction which will help you reduce reliance on processed foods like white flours, white sugars and refined vegetable oils. Foods which when consumed regularly are detrimental to your health.
3. Real food, traditionally prepared maximizes nutrient density.
Before the industrialization of agriculture, raising, growing and preparing our foods through traditional methods was the norm. The methods used back then nourished those generations who had lesser nutrition-related diseases as compared to our modern generation. Preparing foods using these traditional method will optimize the nutrients they contain. Souring grain, as in the case of traditional sourdough, increases the availability of minerals. The habit of fermenting vegetables – as in sauerkraut like the Germans did and kimchi like the Asians was born of practicality – a way to preserve the harvest well into winter but serves the dual purpose of increasing beneficial bacteria, food enzymes and B vitamins. By preparing foods traditionally, we maximize their nutrient density.
4. Real food will raise generations of healthy people.
Research has shown a link between feeding during pre-pregnancy, pregnancy and health of the offspring. Mothers who ate poorly (refined carbs, processed foods high in fats and oil and lots of sugars) before and during pregnancy tend to have children who become obese and are at risk of cardio vascular diseases and vice versa. Proper nutrition before, during pregnancy and after goes a long way to health prevent diseases which may affect your future generation. Feeding your child(ren) with real food and by teaching them how to eat to nourish their bodies, you give them the right start from the very beginning. By so doing, you raise a generation of people who will value nutrient-dense, unrefined whole foods. Nourish yourself properly both pre-conception and during pregnancy.
5. Real food helps the environment and the farmers.
Eating real fresh and local foods ensure that the farmers in your community are compensated fairly for their hard work – planting, harvesting crops and raising animals the right way. You enable them feed themselves and their families. When you buy fresh food from local farmers, you can be sure that your food is save, grown with little or no fertilizers and are not genetically mutilated. Also fresh food in season, grown locally offer have their nutrients all intact. Moreover, grass-fed and pasture-raised meats like cattle nourish the earth by sequestering carbon in the soil and improve the native flora. Now that you know why real food is good for you, click here to know the rules and here to take the pledge.