I think every family develops their own eating style. Some borrowed from her upbringing, some borrowed from his… and a myriad of other influences along the way. We pick and chose from the foods we’re exposed to (not to mention all the “good eating” theories out there) to find a way that is our own – a diet that we’re comfortable with (and that the kids will eat without too much of a fight!).
Not as simple as grabbing some grub and stuffing your face!
Even though we all have to eat and we all have to figure out what and how we’re going to feed ourselves – eating well is not as simple as it once seemed. In fact, I would say that it feels like more and more people are talking about how we should be eating. For crying out loud – McDonald’s has even started marketing a “real food” message and adding healt”ier” options to their selection!
Figuring out your eating style may just be harder than ever though – especially if you want to make conscious and healthy decisions. There are just so many competing voices out there. Eat more vegetables, eat less carbs, eat more meat, eat less meat, go unprocessed, add more fish, don’t eat too much fish… and the list goes on.
Truth be told, I find it all rather exhausting and wish I didn’t have to think about it. But I can’t help myself. I really do feel it’s important to 1) think about what I’m eating and feeding my family and 2) be more informed about different types of food. And as I think more about it… and more importantly, as Brandon thinks more about it… our diet and our way of looking at food is slowly changing.
It’s not that we were ever “bad” eaters…
In fact, I would argue that up until now we’ve always eaten quite well. Over the years, we’ve made what I consider to be fairly simple choices to eat right. I like to cook so most of our meals are what you would consider “home-made” or “real”. We try to have fish once a week and one or two meatless meals. We started buying our grass-fed beef from a local farmer a few years ago… And despite Brandon’s somewhat limited pallet for veggies, we’ve always been conscious of getting in multiple servings of fruit and vegetables each day.
We’ve never been “perfect” though. Our kids have eaten KD or McDonald’s on numerous occasions (which to be completely honest I don’t really feel all that guilty about since they don’t eat like that every day) and as a working mom, I’m just not ready to start making everything from scratch.
But small changes can turn into big changes too…
More recently we’ve started making some small changes because of things that we’ve heard, talked about or read about. A real mix of sources and influences have led us here… the most significant one being Brandon’s discovery of the “paleo diet” which basically says that our bodies are not made / or did not evolve to eat the many many foods produced after agriculture was introduced. It’s a very interesting theory, but what we’ve taken most from it is to increase the amount of fruits and more importantly vegetables we eat, cut back pretty significantly on grains and avoid eating more and more foods that are unprocessed.
We’re eating more “salad and meat” types of meals, adding more variety in the fruits/vegetables department and most recently (as in this week)… we’ve started making our own bread. I feel a little ridiculous to admit it but until a couple of weeks ago, I had never read the ingredients on a bag of all-purpose flour… and I’m pretty upset by the fact that peroxide is so high on the ingredients listed!
Everything in moderation though… and one day at a time. Tomorrow evening we’re hosting a family “sugaring off” supper and it won’t quite follow all the new rules! But I would say (I think I said that already in this post… more than once… bah whatever)… I would say that this is part of what is so great about making our own choices for how we eat. We can try new approaches… and make our very own.
Afterall balance and flexibility are very important things too!