What's Old is New Again, and it's Here to Stay

unnamed_(1).jpg

For the past 50 years, we've suffered with a food system in the US that was intended to feed millions cheaply. While it had good intensions of providing food security for the country, and making sure we could all afford a basic need, it's had dramatic long-term costs and unintended consequences. Highly processed foods have become cheaper and more convenient than real food, and as the flavoring industry improves their craft, processed foods have become more craveable as well. As a result, over 2/3 of of American adults are overweight or obese, obesity rates in children have tripled in the last three decades, and as of 2012, more than half of the american adult population had one or more preventable health condition.

Read more
Add your reaction Share

The Crappy Food Cycle aka Why The System is Rigged

 download.jpg

It started two years ago.  The confluence of both professional and personal factors that led to the voracious reading of academic papers, medical journals and physician-authored NY Times Bestsellers.  I wanted to understand exactly how food impacts our health and whether or not, through an active choice of what we eat, we could actually reverse illness and disease.  Can a certain type of diet strengthen our immune system, and if so, what is that diet?

Trained as a scientist many years ago, I was driven by the desire to understand as much as possible the biochemistry of the body and the resultant medical implications.  What actually happens to our bodies when we eat different types of food? 

Read more
Add your reaction Share

Keeping it Real During the Holidays

holidays.jpgThe Holiday season is fast approaching, and for many the holiday season = weight gain of around 10lbs. Is there a way to avoid all of that during the holiday season? Yes! If you keep it real; real foods, that is.

First a quick review: WHAT IS REAL FOOD

And conversely, here are some common characteristics of foods that are not real.

Too much:

  • Trans-fat

  • Branched chain amino acids (leucine, isoleucine, valine)

  • Omega-6 fatty acids (plant oils, polyunsaturates)

  • Additives

  • Emulsifiers (polysorbate-80, carboxymethylcellulose)

  • Salt

  • SUGAR

What makes real foods so easy to identify is that they typically don’t have a nutritional label. Yet many still find it difficult to navigate the family buffet table, the all inclusive resort buffet, or the kitchens and dining rooms of friends and families.

Here are some tips on keeping it real during the holidays:

Read more
Add your reaction Share

The US, UK, and CH: a multinational comparison of food and food policy

3J13XAT5LM.jpgAs a food lover, I am always very curious about local food and eating habits whenever I travel. To me, it is an important aspect of any country’s culture and traditions. Within the past three years, I have lived in California, London and recently returned to my home country, Switzerland. Consequently, I have been thinking about the eating habits and the corresponding environments of these three countries and I would like to take some time to share with you some of my observations and thoughts.

Read more
Add your reaction Share

Can You Buy Enough Fruits and Veggies for $61 a Week? The USDA Thinks You Can

AWJD4WV6W1.jpgBack in 2004, the U.S. Department of Agriculture told consumers that they could meet their fruit and vegetable needs for 64 cents a day per person – a figure still sometimes quoted on the Internet. 

Dubious as I think that figure was, the USDA now says that a family of four on a limited budget need only spend $61.28 a week for fruits and veggies. That seems closer, right? But is it anywhere near reality for most people?
Read more
Add your reaction Share

White Mountain Foods, a real food company

Many thanks to the IRN and Eat REAL for inviting White Mountain Foods to post on your blog. We hope to get our products REAL Certified in the near future and to become a member of this outstanding community. Before the IRN Executive Director, Wolfram, reached out, we had no idea that organizations such as these existed. We greatly appreciate and support the work these two organizations are doing to shine a light on the harm we cause by eating poorly.

My name is Jeff Murray and I am the owner and CEO of our thirty-six-year old family business, White Mountain Foods.  It's not my intent to use this opportunity to promote our products with slick marketing sound bites, but simply to explain who we are and what we are doing. We prefer to let our products do the majority of the talking for us.

 WMF_Team_Photo.11.03.16.jpeg

Read more
1 reaction Share

Secret Symptoms

V9AOG26R2W.jpg

As a child growing up I was just like everyone else. I ate doughnuts, had candy before dinner, and loved milkshakes. I never knew any differently. But once my mom, who was anorexic as a child, began investigating her health, I started exploring mine. In 5th grade, I was tested for allergies, and learned I was allergic to gluten, dairy, coconut, and apples. But I didn’t pay much heed to the diagnoses. Whenever my mom wasn't around to supervise, I was a gluten and dairy inhaler. I gorge myself on these foods just for the instant satisfaction and feeling of fullness. For a while I didn't notice any reaction.

It wasn't until seventh grade that my allergies started to make me sick. I was diagnosed with minor hypoglycemia, sinus infections, whooping cough, concussion after concussion, and torn muscles. I eventually became too sick and could no longer play soccer, my favorite thing in the whole wide world. It was devastating. 

Read more
2 reactions Share

Yogurt-Schmogurt! How the Yogurt Industry Markets to You and Your Kids

QL0I5DPNGX.jpg

Every week when I grocery shop I peruse the dairy aisle and feel a desire to scream at the well-meaning shoppers who are buying flavoured yogurt snacks for their kids or themselves, believing them to be healthy choices. Although the dairy industry tries its best to make you believe that you are doing a good thing by buying these products for your family for their calcium value, the reality is, you are not. 

Read more
1 reaction Share

One-Week Roadmap to Healthy Meals

771S335ARZ.jpg 

I’ve noticed that whenever I post online about the IRN or the importance of eating real foods, I get the same comments and questions again and again: ”I get what you’re saying about processed foods and added sugar, but how do I make it happen with a busy schedule and family? How do you do it?”

This week a friend asked me if I could plan a week of fresh food meals within the guidelines of recommended sugar. I sent her the blog post I wrote last year on how I plan my family’s meals but she wanted something more specific, like a “roadmap” to healthy meal planning.

So here is the “road map” I made to start my friend on a real food journey, and I want others to be able to use it too!

Read more
1 reaction Share

Medical Nutrition Products

 

Umas_photo_of_nutritional_supplement_ad.jpegLast week as I was perusing a gastrointestinal medical journal, I came across this full-page advertisement, alerting healthcare professionals to a new “medical formula” meant to help patients suffering from “digestive sensitivities” and “food intolerances” who are on a low FODMAP diet.

Needless to say, being a physician who strongly believes in the healing power of avoiding ultra-processed foods whenever possible, I was curious to know how and why the food industry felt that patients could benefit from consuming their highly processed medical “food”.  

Read more
2 reactions Share

My Story

91E0HB20F8.jpg

About a year ago, I discovered that I was an addict. Like other addicts in the midst of an addiction, I believed that I did not have a problem. I had no idea of the severity of my addiction until I tried to distance myself from it. Breaking the addiction was much more difficult than I had ever imagined - I fell off the wagon multiple times, and found it hard to get back up again. After a few weeks of trying and failing and trying again, I began to feel discouraged. Perhaps this was just how it was supposed to be for the rest of my life. At this point I was convinced that quitting just wasn’t going to happen. But then I watched to the movie that would change my life forever. 

My name is Whittney Sullivan. I am seventeen years old, and a recovering addict of the substance that is causing one of the biggest epidemics in our history: sugar.

Read more
2 reactions Share

The Big Fat Fix Indeed!

(en français)

When I found out months ago that a new lifestyle medicine documentary featuring the controversial (to some, not me!) British cardiologist, Dr. Aseem Malhotra, was in the works with one of the producers of Cereal Killers, Donal O’Neill, I was excited and could not wait to see it!  

As it turned out, I would have to wait, but as soon as the film, The Big Fat Fix, became available to the general public (the day after it premiered to members of the British Parliament), I’m sure I was one of the first people to download and watch it. Then I re-watched it and watched it a third time with my husband that evening.

I was curious if the documentary’s recommendation of adopting a Mediterranean lifestyle fits with the recent changes my family has made.  My husband and I have been on a Real Food Journey for a year now. The film served as a great way to gauge how we fare in comparison with the preeminent cardiologist’s lifestyle prescription.

Read more
Add your reaction Share

From Lipophobia to Carbophobia

In the mid-eighties while I was an undergraduate student in Kinesiology, the Dietary Guidelines presented in a beautiful graphic pyramid was in full swing. We were taught that following those guidelines would be important for the cardiovascular health of our future clients and also for our own health. We also learned the calories in = calories out equation for maintaining weight.

During this time, I can truly say I developed “lipophobia

Read more
Add your reaction Share

Give More Thought to Snacks

According to a recent survey of American’s dietary habits 75% of us eat breakfast, 88% eat lunch, and 90% of us snack daily, yet we don’t plan snacks like we do other meals.

PSDP0Q5WHT.jpg 

Eating candy, chips, donuts, cookies, and other unhealthy snacks will satisfy your cravings temporarily, but they cause your blood sugar to rise and just as quickly drop, making you feel lethargic, moody, and still hungry because you haven’t given your body the fuel it needs. For those with children, studies have shown that up to 45% of the average American child’s caloric intake comes from snacks. Therefore, planning ahead for snacks is as important as the meals you plan for you and your family.

Read more
Add your reaction Share

My Organic Food Stamp Challenge

ProvisionsWeek_1.jpg

When I heard about former Newark Mayor (now Senator) Cory Booker’s one week Food Stamp Challenge on the Sunday Morning Show several years ago, I was intrigued. As a bone health and nutrition coach, I wondered whether I could not just survive but eat well on SNAP Benefits (USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program offers nutrition assistance to eligible, low-income individuals and families).

When I say eat well I mean eating fresh, unprocessed, organic, non-GMO food. Now that’s a challenge!

With that, my friend Vicki and I set a goal to eat well on a budget of $4.40 per person, per day — the same “per day” budget Mayor Booker used.

 

Read more
7 reactions Share

Just Eat Real Food - A Question of Balance

CFBFE8F090.jpgA year ago my family began its journey towards eating only Real Foods. The decision came in 2015 after we received my husband’s cholesterol test results – he was at moderate to high risk of heart disease and had a slightly elevated ALT level (an indicator of fatty liver disease). He was also carrying a few extra pounds around his midsection. We decided that a Real Food diet would be the best way to improve his health.

That was last summer, and this year I anticipated seeing an improvement in his blood tests during his annual physical. Aside from a few restaurants meals and some rare desserts, he had (in my book) been adhering to the perfect diet since his diagnosis - no sugar, not even artificial sweeteners; good sources of fat like olive and avocado oil; nuts and seeds; organic grass-fed meat; pasture raised eggs; berries; green vegetables; and the occasional square of dark chocolate. He was moderately active, lost 15 pounds, and became slimmer around the middle. Sounds perfect, right?

Well, maybe not so perfect…

Read more
Add your reaction Share

No Claims Necessary


GV79M48QQM.jpg

Grocery shopping can be an overwhelming task.  With rows and rows filled with different food items, each sharing their own beneficial claims, how do you know what to buy?  The purpose of food is to provide you with the energy and nutrients your body needs, so why are the so many complicated choices?  And if these items are natural, whole, and clean, why are they processed and packed in boxes with confusing ingredients? 

Read more
Add your reaction Share

Balancing Flavors

6ASMNGB3YI.jpg

The correct seasonings for any dish will enhance the flavor of the food without competing or overpowering. When I teach cooking classes I find that seasoning and balancing flavors are what most people struggle with. If you’re not careful, everything on your plate can taste the same, or one flavor can completely overpower everything else.

Read more
Add your reaction Share

The Big Fat Fix with Dr. Aseem Malhotra

Dr. Aseem Malhotra is one of the most outspoken cardiologists in Britain. He takes practicing medicine to a whole new level by leading the global crusade against excess sugar consumption and championing for lifestyle approaches to health. His new film, The Big Fat Fix, offers solutions to preventing and reversing diet-related disease. He recently joined our advisory board, and as his first act of business, he granted us this interview about his new film.

Read more
3 reactions Share

Eating for Health with Dr. Ed Bauman

eatingforhealth.png

Eating For Health™ (E4H) is a comprehensive approach to educating people about how to eat and enjoy a diverse, real food diet that provides a full range of the nutrients known to promote health and support recovery from illness and injury. It integrates the very best of ancient and modern culinary and nutritional practice as illustrated by the above mandala of wholeness, based on the earth’s generous support of life on our planet in the form of healthy food, water, air, and kind hearts. E4H is a way of being in right relationship with food and other beings -- a path to creating harmony within ourselves, our families, our communities, and with the earth.

Read more
1 reaction Share