Last week, I shared about my journey in Nourishing Traditions. For those of you new to the term or unfamiliar with the book, here is one simple way to explain what nourishing food is: it’s real and it’s traditional.
Imagine a box of cereal, the healthiest you can think of. Kashi Almond Honey Flax? Sounds healthy, right? With 9g Protein, 8g fiber, 500mg Omega-3 and 15g of whole grains, how can you go wrong? But here’s the surprise: it doesn’t make our nourishing food list. How come? It’s not real. It’s not traditional.
Real foods are whole foods just the way nature intended them. Real foods don’t come in boxes that lists ingredients you can’t pronounce or readily identify. Real foods have nutrients that are naturally occurring, not readily added. Real foods are foods that are grown in their natural state, or fed their natural diet. Organically grown corn is real food. High fructose corn syrup is not.
Traditional foods are foods that have a long history, the stuff our grandparents and great grandparents and great great grandparents ate. Traditional foods are prepared in ways that preserve nutrients, not destroy them. Traditional foods are handed down from generations, not marketed by multi-million dollar companies. Traditional foods are rooted in ancient culture, not modern technology. Homemade broth is traditional food. Store-bought broth is not.
So Kashi Almond Honey Flax does not make the cut. Even though it’s a better choice over Fruit Loops. While made of real ingredients, the process that the grains have to go through turns it into something else. The extrusion process the grains go through to make them into the nice little cereal puffs make the oils in the grains go rancid. (read more here.) So you are truly better off with homemade oatmeal prepared the old fashioned way: soaked overnight (more on why for another post).
Isn’t it shocking that most of everything you find in your average grocery store do not make the cut, save for the stuff they sell on the periphery of the store? You know, stuff like butter, milk, eggs, vegetables, fruits, grains and meat? But that’s as simple as your nourishing foods can get. I love simple.
Do your foods count as nourishing? Are you interested in learning more about how to transition your kitchen into a more nourishing one? In the next few weeks, I’m going to start hosting “The Nourishing Kitchen Challenge” on Tuesdays here at A Nourishing Home. I hope to discuss the simple ways we can make changes towards foods that are real, old, traditional and simple. Foods that are truly good for you, your budget and the rest of world.