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Food: It will all kill you

April 10, 2013

A bag of green powder sits before me.

I can’t bring myself to put it on my head. But I can also no longer bring myself to dye the growing grey with chemicals. Risk the henna? Or the toxins?

And then there’s the food. WHAT IN THE WORLD ARE WE SUPPOSED TO EAT?

Seemingly, the only thing everyone agrees is safe in moderation are vegetables, red wine, coffee, and dark chocolate. I think I could live on that but how does this help me pack lunches everyday?

A recent trial week in the Wheat Belly Cookbook brought mutiny. Son hid cookbook. Husband pleaded for them all, “We are hungry!” Youngest begged for Cheerios again. Has wheat really been genetically modified and butchered and become the leading cause of everything from dandruff to dementia?

Sophie with eggsThe Forks Over Knives documentary made me want to call everyone I know fighting cancer, and empty our fridge of every animal based product there is. Would a plant based diet really end heart disease, cancer, and diabetes as we know it? And yet, even if we were to eat almost entirely plants, would they have the necessary vitamins and minerals given soil depletion and modern day farming practices?

Health aside, what about the social ramifications of our food? Tomatoes, bananas, chocolate and coffee have all been known to have child labor and/or serious human rights infractions in their product line. Recently, I read that Quinoa used to be a little known staple in Brazil and has become so popular in American health food, the locals can no longer afford to eat it.

Needless to say, though I have been environmentally conscious and cooking whole foods for years, I have never felt as confused as to what to buy and what to feed my family. I am thankful (so thankful) that we are healthy and have the luxury of choice. But what a headache! I know too much to ignore it, but not enough to decide.

Meanwhile, my poor family is wondering what they’ll eat, nervously daring to ask what’s for dinner and hoping beyond hope they can a) pronounce it and b) gag it down.

And, despite my quest to grow healthy bodies and eat with the rest of the world in mind, I know we were created to delight in food. It is sacred, often paired in Scripture with community, celebration, ceremony… worship.

For my husband and me, a night at The Whelsh Rabbit Cheese Shop is divine. Truly a sacred act of delighting in God’s creation of good food (animal products!) and good company (we have taken best friends and close family for some of the greatest evenings of our year).

So, are you feeling my agony? How do you cook? Shop? Feed a family?

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. cbabruno permalink
    April 10, 2013 1:57 pm

    By the way, what is for dinner?!

  2. April 10, 2013 2:36 pm

    You ask some really good questions but when I think about them too much it leads me to paranoia and that’s not fun OR healthy! So I have no answers except for this one. I LOVE HENNA on the hair! It covers up grey beautifully (I mix it with indigo that I bought from a henna company in Ohio) and is really easy. The only thing is that it smells like hay, so my kids avoid me when it’s on but it’s worth it 🙂 Blessings to you! Alicia

    • Beth Bruno permalink*
      April 16, 2013 10:01 am

      Alicia, I tried henna yesterday. I will have to update. It was one of the scariest things I’ve ever done to myself! Hair is getting darker by the hour…

  3. April 11, 2013 1:40 pm

    Our family is making the attempt at becoming “Weekday Vegetarians”. That way, we only have to battle dinnertime mutiny five days a week instead of seven. We saw Forks over knives too and it was quite a shock. But seven days a week of that diet is too much for our family at this time, maybe in the future, after our palettes adjust we’ll extend it to six days. I felt this has been a good change for us over all. My kids are learning how to enjoy vegetables (slowly), we are getting healthier (My husband and I have both lost 10 pounds in the three months we have done this) and with all the heart disease and high blood pressure on my dad’s side of the family, I feel its necessary for me to do if I want to live past 60. (All the males have passed away in their early fifties on my dad’s side. My dad has lived the longest so far and he’s 58 – but in the past two years he’s suffered a mild stroke and heart attack – and not for lack of exercise or dieting! It turns out there is a family defect in the way our blood vessels are wrapped around our heart. So, yeah, it’s quite motivating to make a switch! Good luck! It’s not easy, that’s for sure!

    -Rachel

    • Beth Bruno permalink*
      April 16, 2013 10:02 am

      So, Rachel, are you saying you went completely animal product free? What have you found to be the hardest for the kids? Secrets to making them happy/deceived? (I’m not above healthy deception!)

  4. April 16, 2013 10:03 am

    I recently saw Starhawk, An american writer and activist speak. She was very succinct in her comment that we must proceed in an imperfect world with our own imperfections, toward our goals. No one is perfect. She used an example of how much she flies around the world to speak and teach, using up fossil fuels, but knowing that the good she can do and share in the world counters it.

    I have used this philosophy with feeding my family. I too am completely at the point you describe above “I know too much to ignore it, but not enough to decide.”……We have the luxury of choice. We have a heavy load of consequences to consider when choosing what to feed our family. There are no easy answers.

    Thank you for talking about this!

    • Beth Bruno permalink*
      April 16, 2013 6:09 pm

      Naima, Glad you found this blog and I appreciate your thoughts. Such a good point that we are all imperfect. It is somewhat where I’ve landed in my last two grocery store runs, lest I lose my mind!

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