Saturday, July 28, 2012
Processed Food Purge
On April 24th, Donnie and I started on a new diet. Well, we really don't consider it a diet; we really consider it a lifestyle change. We've been reading up on and generally following the principles of the Weston A. Price Foundation. Four months later and 25lbs. less each, we remain committed to the new habits we've incorporated at meal times and during grocery shopping trips. We enjoy our meals, aren't going around hungry, and feel great too.
We started out slowly on this new way of eating by reducing our bread intake, cutting out desserts, and adding in higher quality meats and veggies. Then we ditched diet soda to cut our caffeine intake as well as the chemicals we were consuming. Donnie has even given up coffee although I am still drinking the equivalent of two cups a day. We started adding healthy saturated fats back into our diets. Vegetable oils of any type were out, and coconut oil and bacon grease became standard. We also began to make smart choices about organic produce. Refer to the Dirty Dozen here.
At first I vowed to use up all the processed foods I already had in the house. Why waste money, right? But as time has gone on, I found that I just couldn't stomach serving up the processed foods at meals. I just felt like one box of xyz that had 50 ingredients I couldn't pronounce in it wasted all my other efforts over the day to try to eat healthy. So this weekend I decided it was time to purge the pantry and the refrigerator of all the processed foods still in the house. I filled up about 8 boxes with soups, canned veggies, cake mixes, and pasta. We won't miss these products, really. And, our local thrift store, Guardian Angel, said they'd be glad to take any non-perishable food products not out of date.
Those of you who have been in the large walk-in pantry that I'm blessed with know that from time-to-time it has been anything but walk-in:-) I'm pleased to say that there is now a lot of room in it. You could almost do a jig! Now that I'm done with purging the processed foods, I will make an effort to better organize my kitchen gadgets and the food items I still need to store outside the refrigerator.
See the pic at the top for a view of the emptied back of the pantry. I'd say we're 85% processed food free and/or organic only now.
It's amazing when we eat fresh or fermented foods just how much activity goes on in our refrigerator and freezer instead of in the pantry. In this shot of the freezer, you'll see a lot of beef from Wilkerson Farms and some pork from Rainbow Meadow Farms. I'm low on chicken right now. We signed up today to cowpool to get an 1/8 of a side. Soon the freezer will be filled with even more grass fed beef.
In this shot of the refrigerator, you'll see Maple View Farms milk, kumbacha, butter, sauerkraut, lacto-fermented ketchup, local eggs and homemade bbq sauce. Lots of cheeses and veggies hidden in the drawers too.
I cook a real dinner almost every night, and on the nights when we don't eat fresh, we eat leftovers from the night before. Lunch often consists of quality leftovers too. Breakfast is eggs and bacon or sausage most days as well. When we travel, we pack lunches to take with us for picnics and make smart choices at restaurants for breakfast and dinner.
Donnie and I guesstimate that we are spending about the same on groceries now as we were before. When you don't eat out much, you can afford to buy better quality foods to prepare at home. But we sure are eating what we feel is much better now.