I step into the sunlight each day and wonder how I can make the world better for my children. Can I love them in such a way that they will never doubt their self worth? Can I be softer with them when they experience the painful sting of frustration? Can I encourage them more vigilantly? Can I teach them something with more passion? Can I help them learn life’s real lessons outside their textbooks? These questions and more are continual works of cerebral deliberation, including am I feeding them “right”.
For me, the nutrition questions go to the heart of matters as much as the nurture questions. I imagine Jeff and myself as farmers growing whole children – minds, spirits, and bodies. There’s no manual, and the healthy eating field has left me increasingly perplexed. Is chicken okay or is even organic chicken filled with too many toxins? Can we eat red meat regularly or only once a month? How much sugar is too much? And, HOW CAN I GET MY BOYS TO EAT VEGETABLES??? I don’t have the answers, but I do have the curiosity and commitment to search for them. (Side note: I also have an insanely high sense of “good grades= good girl” which provides me with the tenacity to never quit my pseudo-academic pursuits.)
Next on our family’s journey to find the elusive answers is the October Unprocessed challenge from Eating Rules. The rules are simple (thank you, dear Lord, for hearing my prayer and providing some simplicity here!): (1) when you eat grains, eat 100% whole grains, (2) don’t eat anything with high fructose corn syrup, and (3) don’t eat hydrogenated oils, trans-fats, or anything that’s been deep fried. Simple, and, for the most part, we’re already there as a family. Food rules creator, Andrew Wilder, also adds the kitchen test to determine if food counts as “processed”: unprocessed food is anything that could be made by a person of reasonable skill in a home kitchen with whole-food ingredients. Really making sure ALL of our food meets this test, especially where the kids are concerned, will require some adjustments (e.g., not making them Annie’s Organic Mac and Cheese for a side dish every night, because at least it’s organic, right?).
Wish us luck and love this October as we nourish our bodies with unprocessed foods while avoiding the temptations of Papa John’s pepperoni pizza, homemade chocolate chip cookies, Dunkin Donuts coffee with cream and sugar, Georgetown red velvet cupcakes, salty French fries, Caroline’s caramel cake…..ooh, that hurts! Perhaps you could wish us luck and love AND fortitude of will!