Monday, February 07, 2011

Going Vegan, Day 1: In Defense of Food

Welcome to Day 1 of the Vegan for a Week Challenge.  I still have to head to the store to pick up a few things, but I am raring to go!

I looked at my Inspiration Board this morning and had totally forget that I had included veganism as one of the things I wanted to try this year.  What great timing. :)

In preparation for this challenge, I mentioned that I was reading "In Defense of Food" by Michael Pollen.  I had every intention of making detailed notes for my review, but I got so into the material that by the time I realized that I wanted to take notes, I was done.

I loved this book.

For those of you not familiar with the premise, Pollen feels that we need to re-think our current relationship with food and view it more as our ancestors did. We should be mindful about all the connections that have brought our food to the table; how the soil is connected to the plants, the plants are connected to us and we are connected to our culture.

We live in a society that views food in term of nutrients (i.e. low-fat, cholesterol free, high in protein, bad carbs etc) instead of looking at the food as whole.  The whole being much greater as the nutritional sum of its parts.  (Guilty, as I am sure many of you are.)

So what is his proposed solution:  Eat food.  Mostly plants.  Not too much.

He takes a very balanced approach when looking at food and his message couldn't be simpler:  Choose locally-grown, organic foods more often, plants are the best, but meat is beneficial too and always go for quality over quantity.

Many people (including me) were skeptical of the the benefits of organic.  It is costly and if I am eating plenty of conventional whole foods, what difference does it make if they are organic or not?  Well, as it turns out, a lot.  The richer the soil, the more nutrients and goodness in the plants and the animals who eat those plants. This results is a tastier food that is better for you and me.

I am a believer, all his connections just make good common sense.

I could go on and on toting the wisdom of this book, but I highly recommend that you read it yourself.  It will truly change the way you look at food.
Have you read "In Defense of Food"?  
What are your thoughts on mindful eating?

Stay Healthy,

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