Monday, July 1, 2013

The Stuff We Teach Our Kids About Food

Growing up in the 80's, I was a product of the "convenience" generation. Drive thru's, frozen meals, diners on every corner. I never had to wait for food because it was always available.

If you had asked me then if I thought I was eating real food, I would have said "Of course it's real. Can't you see it?!".

Ahhh, the days of being blissfully unaware of what I was eating...

They say once you see something, you can't un-see it.  The same is true for what you learn about food. I have seen the conditions cows, hogs and chickens live in on "factory farms". I cannot bring myself to buy that meat at the store. Every time I stand in the meat section, I just want to cry...and vomit. That isn't food the way God intended.

For the past two weeks, my husband's teenaged cousins have been visiting along with his Aunt (their grandma). Because the girls spent almost all their time at our house, eating our food, Aunt Rose brought over a bunch of food. Lots of cheese. I love cheese. She also brought over a gallon of milk that the girls hadn't finished. Since we can't get raw milk here, I buy only organic whole milk. The stuff she brought over was 2% milk that you find in any grocery store. My kids wouldn't even touch it. Now, my kids will eat pretty much anything but they are starting to realize that food is fuel. Bad fuel is bad for the body. I have been doing a lot of reading on milk lately because I really want to get a dairy cow. Did you know that decades ago, skim milk was considered waste material by dairy farmers? It was pretty much used as hog feed because it was better than just throwing it out and it put a lot of fat on them. Now it is marketed as a way to lose weight???? Yeah, tell me how that works.

The oldest cousin has a lot of food misconceptions that I find are very common with teens her age. First of all, they think butter is bad. She is always amazed when she comes to visit that we use butter. We use it a lot. And we are healthy. She has been following Weight Watchers with her dad because he has some serious health problems. According the them (WW), butter is bad and we should all be eating margarine. Not happening in this house! She has also been trained to think that bacon is the worst food ever. Now, we don't go around eating bacon every day (I am pretty sure I could eat it every day though!) but if we want some, we pull out a package of uncured nitrate/nitrite free bacon and we have some. If I was better organized, I would be saving the fat from the bacon to use in other cooking but I never think about it. There is nothing unhealthy about fat from healthy animals.

If we are going to demonize food, let's demonize the right food! Let's call out the gmo, processed, fake foods that we have been feeding our families for far too long. Let them take their rightful place among the list of "foods" that we aren't going to consume anymore. Let's stop driving our kids through the drive thru or picking up pizza most nights of the week because we are "too busy" to cook a nourishing meal. Let's fill our families' bodies with good, wholesome, REAL foods like grass fed beef, pastured pork/poultry, organic fruits and vegetables, butter and whole milk (raw if you can find it).

Think you can't afford whole foods? Next post I am going to tell you why you are thinking incorrectly.

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