Let Them Eat...Better! (A Series & a Challenge)

Good evening all! You may have noticed the past couple weeks, I haven't posted a menu. I apologize for this, but I've been compelled, at least for the time being, to take this blog in a slightly different direction. I've felt that the weekly menus are lacking something - they don't truly share with you my passion for food.

In last week's post, I mentioned a challenge. And even though I'm pretty used to eating fresh, local, and organic (when possible), the challenge even seemed a bit daunting to me. So I've decided to try a series of challenges, making small changes that can have a big impact.

Let's start with why I want to do this challenge (and I hope you'll do it with me!).

The grocery store is full of junk processed food - cheap food with little to no flavor...or artificial flavors. Many of us have forgotten (or have never known) what real food *really* tastes like. We eat because our bodies tell us we need to, not because we enjoy the food we're eating, and I think that's backwards. We should eat for enjoyment for ourselves and those with whom we share a meal...not just to get rid of the nagging feeling in our stomachs! As a result, that nagging feeling will go away.

For me, eating is an experience...most often, a pleasurable one. If I have had a hand in growing the food (or being able to talk to the person who grew it), and I've prepared the food, the enjoyment of eating it increases exponentially. And I want everyone to know this type of enjoyment!

We're all used to buying brightly-colored packages of junk at the grocery store, and as a result of this grocery-store-junk-overload, we've deprived our bodies of the nutrients it needs to carry on its processes in an efficient manner. My belief is that our body is like a car. If you put bad fuel in your car, it won't run correctly. If you don't change your car's oil regularly, eventually, the engine will crap out. Your body works the same way...put junk in, get junk out. My goal is to reverse that.

Buying, preparing, and eating food shouldn't be a chore. It should be...well...an experience! This experience can be even more enjoyable with the right food and the right preparation. Both of these things take practice, so we're going to take a few baby steps to get to the ultimate food experience.

So here's the beginning challenge: For the next seven days, I challenge you (and myself) to cut out packaged, processed food from one of your meals each day. This means no boxed, bagged, or commercially canned foods and drinks...and no fast food. We'll make an exception for milk, since it *has* to come in some sort of container. Now, before you freak out, keep in mind: this is only one meal per day. Surely you can replace your morning bowl of cereal with a banana and a glass of milk!

If you think you're too busy to do this, you've already done your grocery shopping for the week, or you usually stop in a convenience store for your breakfast, just remember that most of the larger convenience store chains have fresh fruit and bottles of milk available for purchase. Most grocery stores will sell you a bunch of bananas and a gallon of milk during any of the 24 hours in the day. Excuse eliminated! :)

Give it a shot. I dare you! And if you slip, big deal. I'm not going to hunt you down. :) After all, you're doing this for you, not me, right? Just try again the next day...or at your next meal.

Are you on board? I'd love if you would comment with your plans for this challenges, your successes, your failures, and any questions you many have along the way.

Mangia Bene!

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