Saturday, April 24, 2010

30 Days of Whole Foods: A Challenge

Whole Food Challenge
Photo by Matt Hannon

I've been eating a lot of processed foods lately. It's hard to resist when there are so many new and absolutely delicious gluten and dairy free products coming out on the market. I do it for the sake of the blog! You all want to know what's good so I must try it ALL and write about it!!! Oy. Yesterday I bought some Udi's blueberry muffins and oh my gosh are they awesome, but like someone said - muffins are just ugly cupcakes. So true. The first ingredient on the package is sugar!

Recently I've been hearing some buzz on twitter and the blogs about cleaning up our diets and trying to stick to whole foods as much as possible. Happy Herbivore is hosting a 30 day challenge starting May 1st and she's inspired me to share this challenge with all of you. She is not gluten free but there's a google group over there with a sample shopping list that will give you an idea of what this challenge means.

I've been making big strides in how I eat lately but as usual with me I always take two steps forward and at least one step back. Going back to work has been a struggle when it comes to meal planning and eating properly. I know it's not difficult to do, I just have allowed myself to slack off and this has to stop. I'm going to get sick if I keep going the way I've been going!! That cannot happen.

I'm making this challenge my own and doing it in such a way that it's realistic for my lifestyle. For example, frozen vegetables and dried fruits will be allowed as long as they are organic and do not have added ingredients. Right now I have organic asparagus, broccoli and corn in my freezer and organic dried apples, raisins and apricots in my pantry. As long as there are no added salts or sugars and they are organic, this is good for me. I have done very well switching over to organic foods and that has been great and it's NOT that much more expensive, I swear! I spend the most money at Whole Foods when I buy a bunch of packaged foods, I bought some frozen gf/df lunches last week and those made a huge difference in the overall cost. I buy an 18 pack of free range, organic eggs that come from a local farm and they cost $3.18 which is a very fair price compared to regular eggs. The organic potatoes are the same price as the conventionally grown.

The plan is to eat eggs, meat, fish, vegetables, fruits, and whole gluten free grains like brown rice and quinoa. I will use earth balance soy free spread sparingly, mostly just to cook my eggs and put a little bit on vegetables. I will use olive oil and coconut oil. Spices as long as they don't have additives, and kosher salt sparingly. Lots of water. I don't usually drink anything other than water so that won't be an issue. Maybe I'll make some fresh squeezed OJ one of these days!

I think that this is an important way to eat forever, not just for 30 days, this was just a good way to give me that little push that I needed. Due to this challenge, I will not be accepting products from vendors to sample and review. While I have appreciated the chance to do product reviews, this is always the thing that throws me off. Just because they are gluten free, dairy free, and even organic, doesn't mean they are necessarily healthy. I have eaten chocolate every single day for weeks now and that's just not good.

I hope that you will consider giving this challenge a try. Feel free to join the google group with Happy Herbivore, or do this on your own. Write about it on your blog, spread the word, everyone should be eating this way!! I love what Jamie Oliver is doing with his Food Revolution and I feel that this is just an extension of that. I'm not waiting until May 1 to start this, I'm just going to do it now and keep going forever!

3 comments:

Farty Girl said...

I'm thinking about doing it too! Just thinking about it makes me realize how much processed stuff I still eat. You know it can't be good for our sensitive guts.

Anyway, good luck! :)

Jen said...

That's what I was thinking. I've been lucky that I haven't had a relapse but I know it's only a matter of time if I keep on eating the crap I've been eating!! :)

Melissa said...

I'm mostly a whole foods eater on a regular basis, and it does take a little more prep, but it is absolutely worth it. I can't go organic, but I try to be as local as possible in return, but I avoid added salt and sugar. I make a lot of my own stuff, yogurt, chopped liver, I use mostly olive/coconut oil, I eat loads of fruits and veggies and eggs and meat and cheese. This is a great time for you too, because we are just getting into Farmer's Market season up here (I'm out in the Amherst area). Good luck!