Consumption patterns: One profound shift to health and freedom

Last week, I wrote about Nannie’s empowered journey to health and freedom. How can each of us reach this same destination?

I’m of the belief that changing our consumption patterns from mostly processed foods to mostly whole foods profoundly affects our diets, and consequently, our collective health.

Whole foods originate from the Earth and its bounty. (Think animals, nuts, seeds, and plants.) Processed foods are manufactured by humans or machines. (Think cereal, hotdog buns, pop-tarts, and seltzer.)

In general, whole foods offer vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients essential for longevity. On the other hand, the majority of processed foods consist of empty calories, that is, they’re devoid of nutrition.

While whole foods are pure, processed foods contain additives, such as artificial colors, maltodextrin, high fructose corn syrup, and other gunk (yes, I ❤ the technical terms 😉 ) that hinder health and wellness.

For example, a recipe for homemade tomato sauce may consist of the following: garlic cloves, onions, carrots, celery, tomatoes, olive oil, basil, oregano. Voila! It’s a winning recipe because each component is a whole food that originates from the Earth.

In contrast, a jar of tomato sauce purchased from the grocery store may consist of tomato paste, herbs, salt, and pepper, but also guar gum, Red 40, and refined sugar. Yikes! This store-bought tomato sauce is processed because all of its components do not originate from the Earth.

This week, try swapping processed foods for whole foods. However you begin is awesome in every way! Depending on where you’re at in your journey to health and freedom, you may feel ready to make this shift during a single meal one day this week, or at dinner each night for the next seven days. The only thing that matters is that you do indeed begin.

Remember, this shift in consumption patterns doesn’t have to be a monumental change filled with angst and rigidity. Go for a noble effort rather than aiming for suffocating perfection. You totally got this 🙂

Comment below to ask questions, to share your go-to recipes featuring whole foods, and to tell us how this shift in consumption patterns affects your health!

Until Next Week…Plan Well, Pack Well, Live Well,

Katie

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Nannie chooses health and freedom. What about you?

My grandmother, whom I call Nannie, awoke from a sound sleep this past Monday morning due to acute abdominal pain. She rushed to the hospital, and in less than 24 hours, underwent an emergency procedure. When I saw her in recovery, attached to an IV pole and an oxygen tube, my heart broke.

Nannie and I are best friends.

Nannie is the type of person who, while walking down the street, will scout out a stranger feeling blue, engage her or him in conversation, listen to her or his life story, and then proceed to tell that person how he or she should go about fixing what’s broken.

She will call you up, she will call you out, and she will disregard your excuses about why it can’t be done, or why it won’t happen.

People really dig it.

Because as she’s breaking you down and building you back up again, she makes you feel safe. And cherished. And hopeful.

She was born and raised in Dorchestah (Dorchester, MA) amongst 16, (yes, 16) brothers and sisters. She had a childhood straight out of hell: an alcoholic father, an abusive family structure, an impoverished home, and a neglected neighborhood. Food was fleeting, and health was a luxury, not a right.

When Nannie and I discuss how she overcame her upbringing to become the empowered, healthy, and vibrant woman she is today, her answer always comes back to a choice she made long ago. She didn’t want the life that she was born into. So she chose to create a life she would grow into.

Nannie wanted to be healthy, and she wanted to be free. (Isn’t there a piece of all of us, albeit sometimes silenced, that wants the same thing?)

So Nannie made it happen. She did it for her mother, her siblings, her husband, her kids, and most importantly of all, she did it for herself.

Nannie is seventy-seven years old. She’s a yogi. Her form during plank pose is #likeaboss. She eats chia seeds like they’re going out of style. Her manifesto is “all my cells are well.” And she can maintain an informative discussion with you about organic versus conventional produce, the Dirty Dozen, and the Clean Fifteen.

In other words, Nannie dominates on every level.

I’m relieved to report that Nannie is doing quite well following her emergency procedure. In fact, Nannie decided to do Shiva pose at the hospital while attached to an IV pole (once a yogi, always a yogi!).

She is healthy, and she is free. And she has nobody to thank for that but herself.

This summer at Let’s Eat Lunch!, we’re choosing health and freedom. For ourselves, for our loved ones, for our world. Each of us has power within to make this choice. Let’s Eat Lunch! will provide the information and inspiration to sustain it.

Why do you choose health and freedom?

Until Next Week…Plan Well, Pack Well, Live Well,

Katie

If you found what you read compelling, please consider:

Forwarding this blog post to a friend and encouraging him or her to follow me at:  www.letseatlunch.wordpress.com

Liking this blog post.

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