As I mentioned in my post yesterday, I intend to create a plan that focuses on our priorities in several different areas. Today I am addressing food. Over the past five years, we have significantly changed what we eat and it is an area of our life that is important to both my husband and I. As the chef and grocery shopper, I admit that it's more my doing than my husband's, but over time he has become much more "on board" with the plan that we follow. There are some theories that we believe to be true: the rise in food allergies and illnesses are due, in part, to GMO's; organic food is the best option. While the nutritional content may be the same on the label, the different methods used in the growing, production, and way the animals are fed are the important factors.
In general, these are the guidelines we do our best to follow:
- When possible, organic is the first option
- When possible, purchase Non-GMO products (often labeled as part of the Non-GMO project).
-Make seasonings, marinades, and sauces ourselves
-No food dye, MSG, or caramel color
-The majority of our food is made from simple, from scratch recipes. By planning ahead, healthy doesn't have to equate to hours spent in the kitchen.
Generally I can work all of this into our grocery shopping budget. There is a lot of money freed up when you quit buying filler snacks and processed food and focus on preparing the majority of what you eat from scratch.
There are a few goals we would like to accomplish to compliment these guidelines. First, we plan to make two raised bed gardens and grow a variety of vegetables this spring and summer. I hope we have some success! I think it will be a great family project and the kids will enjoy watching everything grow. Second, we would like to purchase large quantities of meat that meet our guidelines: either fed with Non-GMO feed or grass fed. Finally, I would like to make a point of visiting the local Farmer's Market weekly to purchase staples that we cannot grow or raise ourselves.
Our health is important and as a firm believer in the old saying, "You are What You Eat," I hope our children value healthy eating as much as we have in our older, wiser days! This certainly doesn't imply that we eat this way 100% of the time, but we do our best to make it a priority.