The Place to start on a Food Journey
You want to eat healthy but don’t know where to start? What exactly is healthy food? There is so much conflicting advice out there about what to eat and what not to eat that the meaning of good nutrition and health is often muddled. Of course there is no one answer fits all, but we truly believe that applying the principles of a Traditional Food Philosophy will give you clear guidance in the right direction.
We have benefited from the modern entities of technology in terms of freedom from cold, heat, dirt & oppression, but Father Technology has also burdened us with chronic disease and illness that did not exist before the industrialisation of food. Technology has allured us with fast foods, fractionated foods, convenience foods, packaged foods, fake foods, embalmed foods, vending machines and the food like substances that fill a large part of today’s supermarkets.Technology has created food as a mere convenience and raped us of real food traditions that nourished our ancestors for thousands of years. Modern food choices and the radical diversion away from traditional food preparation techniques has resulted in severely compromised health & vitality & epidemics that are destroying human beings. Heart disease, diabetes, autoimmune diseases, dental cavities, mental illnesses, infertility and childhood learning disorders are rife in today’s world. These diseases were non-existent before the industrialisation of food.
Where to from here? We need to embrace the best of both worlds, applying the nourishing traditions of our ancestors in our modern & technological world. “The wise and loving marriage of modern invention with the sustaining, nurturing food folkways of our ancestors is the partnership that will transform the Twenty-First Century into the Golden Age…” (Fallon, p xii)
When we apply the wisdom of our ancestors to the way in which we produce and process our food the results are bounteous. Not only can we enjoy delicious and nourishing food we will also experience increased vitality, grow strong & robust children & be free from the ruins of acute & chronic illness & disease. This may mean spending more time in the kitchen but, eating real foods that take real time will result in real health (Pinkfarm).
Anthropological evidence reveals that the foods that nourished our ancestors prior to the industrialisation of food correlates with populations that displayed exuberant health. Cultures that existed entirely on Indigenous foods prepared according to the time-honoured traditions of their ancestors were free from the modern diseases of today.
“Across the globe and throughout human history, populations consuming diets consistent with their ancestral traditions have averted the diseases of civilisation, such as diabetes & heart disease, that are harming more and more people in contemporary societies” (Nora Gedgaudas) It is in the interest of our children and their future that we pay close attention to the food we are eating and feeding them in the 21st century. After all, “what we eat and feed our children matters. It matters a lot” (Pinkfarm)
What are Traditional Foods?
We must pay close attention to defining the true meaning of Traditional Foods. A tradition in general is anything that is handed down from one generation to the next. When we speak about Traditional Foods we are not referring to the modern traditions of eating chocolate at Easter, lollies at Halloween or take-away food every Friday night.
Simply put, “traditional foods are those in their most natural state, unadulterated and unrefined” (Weston. A. Price) Think back to the time before factories and industrial processing. Traditional foods are deeply nourishing and nutrient dense. Traditional foods are foods that our great great great great great ancestors would recognise. Organic, fresh, pasture raised, raw, unrefined, soaked, sprouted, leavened, sustainable. These are the words that reflect Traditional Foods.
Traditional foods are not: laden with additives and preservatives and artificial colours and flavours. Traditional foods are not brimming supermarkets in colourful packets. Traditional foods are not fake foods. Traditional foods are not laden with chemicals. Traditional foods are not raised in barns & concrete pens. Traditional foods are not exploited by high temperatures and industrial factories.
The research and writing of Weston A Price is pivotal in our food journeys. A well-respected dentist from the early 1900’s Weston A Price revealed the importance of nutrition and disease prevention. His studies revealed that, “Life in all its fullness is mother nature obeyed” (Weston A Price) For 10 years Price travelled the world focusing on healthy individuals from remote areas in the world. These populations of people were thriving on “Traditional Foods” only, without access to any modern, industrialised, processed foods, that a large part of the world had succumbed to.
Price’s research revealed an interesting correlation between the foods these people ate, their dental health and surprisingly also their general physical wellbeing. Not only were these people free of dental carries, crowded teeth and underdeveloped jaws, they were also free of modern ailments such as heart disease.
Although diets of the healthy primitives Price studied were diverse they also shared several important underlying characteristics. The common key factors of Traditional Diets revealed by Price:
- They all contained animal products of some sort.
- The foods were nutrient dense. They all had at least 4x the quantity of minerals and water-soluble vitamins of the American diet of his day.
- All contained at least 10x the amount of fat-soluble vitamins found in animal fats, including vitamin A, vitamin D, and the “Price Factor” or “Activator X” discovered by Dr. Price himself.
- They all included some salt (unrefined)
- They used traditional methods of preservation including drying, salting and fermenting, all of which preserve and even increase nutrients in our food
- NONE of the diets consisted of refined, devitalized foods such as white sugar, flour, canned foods, pasteurised/skim milk, hydrogenated vegetable oils.
The following posts will help you to gain a more thorough understanding of and ability to apply the principles of a “Traditional Foods” Philosophy. These principles can be applied to any way of eating you choose to follow, resulting in the provision of more nutrient dense, digestible, health promoting nourishment.
- Grass-fed Meat & Poultry
- Sustainable Seafood
- Raw & Cultured Dairy
- Nature’s Fats
- Nature’s Sweet
- Nature’s Salty
- Cultured Foods
- Activated Nuts & Seeds
- Bone Broths
- Organ meats
- Prepared Grains