“What’s for dinner, Dear?” That’s the frustrating, proverbial question many of us hear nightly. Coming up with a weekly menu or even figuring out what to eat the night before can be daunting. But if we consider the alternatives, it’s more than worth it.
Spoiled by modern conveniences, the excuse often used is, “I’m too tired to cook.” After a long day at work or taking care of the kids, convenience food can be very alluring, an easy alternative to slaving over a hot stove. It’s just easier to pop something into the microwave or the oven; however, most frozen foods contain a long list of ingredients that most can’t pronounce including preservatives, flavor enhancers or exicitotoxins like MSG, nitrates, phosphates and transfats. In addition, microwaves are a “toxic threat…and affects your heart,” says Dr. Joseph Mercola. The microwave actually radiates and “zaps the nutrients right out of your food” (Mercola, Joseph. "The Hidden Hazards of Microwave Cooking." Mercola.com. N.p., 05182010. Web. 23 Feb 2012. <http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/05/18/microwave-hazards.asp&xgt.
The public has become educated on the dangers of High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS), sugar, and transfats prompting the fast food industry to improve its menus, but have they improved? Most of us are savvy when it comes to white flour (the bun), french-fries, and soda, but what about the Chocolate milk with HFCS or the white milk with genetically engineered human growth hormones (RBST)? We’ve heard the stories about chicken nuggets, but what about the meat patties? If we aren’t consuming grass-fed meat, than most likely we are consuming unhealthy pesticides and antibiotics. Salad is okay, right? The first ingredient in salad dressing is most always soybean oil—the cheapest, most unhealthy oil along with transfats. Soy, corn, and canola are three of the worst offenders of Genetically Modified crops (Smith, Jeffrey. Seeds of Deception. 4th. Fairfield: Chelsea Green Publishing, 2003). Lastly, unless it’s an organic salad, pesticides will accompany every bite.
Americans need to return to eating real, whole foods as much as possible. Organic may cost a little more, but the way I see it is, pay now or pay later. Personally, I try to avoid hospitals and medications and opt for prevention rather than expensive treatment. The benefits of organics truly outweigh the cost. Co-ops and health food stores offers organic and grass-fed choices at relatively low prices. Sprouts, Whole Foods, and Costco also sell organics and grass-fed meats. If you have the space, try growing your own garden. It’s a great way to relax and absorb vitamin D from the sun, in addition to producing beautiful, tasty fresh fruit and vegetables.
So let’s make the right choices by planning ahead, forgoing excuses and avoiding temptation as much as possible. The big food companies and the billionaire fast food giants don’t need our money, but we do need good food in order to be healthy. So start creating delicious, organic meals in your kitchen, and enjoy good times at the table with family and friends!
Article Submitted By: Sandra Goff, Health and Wellness Advocate