Americans now eat more than 70% of their diet in the form of processed foods. There is a saying in Japan, where there is a front there is a back…the bigger the front, the bigger the back. In terms of food this means that convenience foods are quick and easy and taste great now, but may lead to expensive and serious health problems down the line.
Most processed foods use highly much refined flour products, bad salt, low quality oils and simple sugars, not to mention chemicals such as preservatives, colors, pesticide residues and artificial sweeteners, as well as genetically modified ingredients.
It is best to shop the perimeter of the grocery store and have the majority of your food cooked from scratch. There are so many different “diets” out there, but the ones that work mostly agree on the fact that food should be prepared from fresh real ingredients.
Of course cooking food from scratch takes much longer and requires more work and planning, but isn’t your health and vitality worth it? There are some foods like canned soups or frozen burritos or veggie burgers from the health food store that can be enjoyed in moderation.
Not everyone needs the same diet, some need more animal protein, others need more vegetarian sources, some can have dairy, others can’t, some can have gluten, others should have a non-gluten diet or even be grain-free. But everyone needs a variety of vegetables and fruit, preferably fresh, every day, and plenty of clean water.
Processed foods are addictive and are often engineered to be that way. Some studies show that animals will react to the simple sugars in foods the same way they react to a cocaine addiction. You have to make a conscious decision that you are not gong to be a lab animal in an experiement but that you have a spiritual temple and you are going to feed this body with whole and healthy foods. Soon your body will start craving the healthy choices and you may notice that you feel out of balance with too much processed foods.
It is so easy these days to find recipes online or in cookbooks that avoid the ingredients that you don’t want. When you find a recipe you like, share it with family and friends…spread the love and the health around. Eating fresh healthy foods is truly your own health “assurance” plan!