January 8, 2013
If you would like to try the unprocessed life I recommend you start off by replacing one meal or snack every day and then doing more. It is very overwhelming to just go cold turkey. When you realize that everything you eat is processed and have to replace everything it is too easy to just say why bother? It is difficult at first you have to read every label. A mild example is sour cream. Most have thickeners like modified food starch. Low-fat products have added sugar and that includes skim and 1% milk.
Where to start?
If you eat a granola bar for breakfast trade it for fruit and string cheese. Oatmeal is quick to make in the microwave if you use quick oats. The packages of instant oatmeal are not any faster to make than your own. Scrambled eggs and poached eggs are also easy to make in the microwave. One of my favorite breakfasts is refried beans spread on a warm corn tortilla and rolled up. I make large batches at one time and freeze them. They heat up quickly in the microwave.
For lunch if you eat a sandwhich and chips make sure you eat real cheese instead of the wrapped slices. Find a bread with the fewest ingredients or the best is to make your own. Make it on a Saturday, slice it, freeze it and then pull out as much as you will use in a few days or a week. Try to stay away from mayos and salad dressings. They all contain soybean oil. Contrary to what most health magazines will tell you soy is not good for us unless it has been fermented like in soy sauce. Choose chips with the fewest ingredients like plain potato chips. The key is to look for foods with 4 or less ingredients with names you can pronounce! If you eat frozen entrees, stop! I just can’t support any of them. They are highly processed and full of sodium and unknowns.
Supper is so easy in our house. Meat, veg, potato. If your normal supper is Hamburger Helper or other meals in minutes from a box or freezer bags, stop! It is so easy to make you own with elbow macaroni, tomato sauce or diced tomatos, meat, and cheese.
You may decide there are items you aren’t willing to give up and that is okay. In our house Shannon has kept Miracle Whip and Ranch dressing. I tried many times, unsuccessfully, to make these homemade. I just couldn’t get it right for him so we agreed he could keep these things. At the same time I don’t think I could talk him into going back to his old cheese or make him a pizza from a Chef Boyardee box. For the most part he likes the changes over the past year. Once you have made the changes you will realize that real food tastes so good!
Start slow and build up. Even a small change is a good change and a change you won’t regret.