24 July 2009

Our Journey Down the Real Food Path

Have you ever had one of those AHA! moments? One where you realize that EVERYTHING you've previously thought about a subject was wrong, incomplete, based on faulty or invalid information, or just plain stupid? I had one of those just recently.

It all started when I toyed with the idea of drinking raw milk. I'm not sure WHERE I first heard that it was good for me, I think Dr Mercola was one of the people who inspired this decision. In any case, I have a friend who knew someone who was a potential source for raw milk and we followed that chain, which resulted in a raw milk source.

When I found out we were able to get some, regularly, I got cold feet - I did a LOT of researching, to make sure that it was safe. It shows you how much you are brainwashed into thinking that "but that's the way it's done" is right. "Pasteurize your milk? Of course! Raw milk is unsafe and you'll die of kidney failure!" Riiiight.

In any case, I found the argument for raw milk pretty convincing. Doctors, farmers, dentists, regular people, a whole bunch of people are out there and willing to talk about raw milk and why you should drink it-and conversely, why you shouldn't drink pasteurized!

I picked up our first installment of milk earlier this week, in a glass 1 gallon jug. It sat in my fridge until the next day, when I sterilized 4 1L mason jars and poured it off into them. There was a little left over in the big container, but that didn't last long.

At that point, I still hadn't tried it (because I'm chicken), so I took a sip-manna! It was delicious. As mentioned in my previous post, I had reservations at first (that brainwashing showing itself) but no more. I DID start small, with a quarter cup serving, so my guts could get used to all the good bacteria and such. I do eat yogurt almost daily, but even with that I could definitely tell a difference. (Sorry if that's TMI!)

I tried spooning off the cream from two of the jars, but that didn't work well, so I procured a sun tea jar/aka glass spigot jar (thanks Food Renegade for the idea!) and got most of it off that way. Then that night, I made butter in my blender. I didn't get as much as I thought I would, but that could be because I had more milk in there than I thought. Better luck next time!

In the course of all this reveling in fresh milk, I was researching. And looking up directions for making butter, yogurt, etcetera. And through THAT research, I learned something. There is a whole Real Food movement out there, a world I didn't even know existed. I mean, sure, eat local, eat organic, eat farm fresh eggs (which we do). But...pasture fed? I had never considered it before! Organic isn't enough?!? Stunning! Now I've started learning about all of this, it makes so much SENSE! Why didn't I think about this/hear about this before?

Another example of Real Food: sprouting or soaking grains/seeds/nuts before you eat them. Who does this? No one I know. But now we do. Last night, I soaked our rolled oats in milk in a pot on the stove (I didn't have any yogurt yet-tonight they are soaking in milk with some yogurt in it). Why? To neutralize a component that makes the oats less bioavailable than they should be. (This makes sense when a grain, seed, or nut's purpose is to propogate, and it can't do that if it's being digested and destroyed in a bird or animal).

Need another example? No processed crap. No white flour or sugar (ok, I was already moving towards that). Pastured, humanely-raised beef, pork, and chicken. Farm-fresh eggs from free-range chickens. Butter or cold-pressed olive oil or coconut oil, not vegetable oil. Most remarkable: ANIMAL FAT IS GOOD FOR YOU. Revolutionary.

I can't write any more now, I'm overwhelmed. I can't believe that I'm turning 32 in a month and I just learned all this. I have so much to make up for!

1 comment:

Jen said...

It is overwhelming, huh? I began the journey when I stumbled across the Weston A. Price Foundation website, while researching vaccinations. My son was 2 months old. I decided then and there to search out raw milk, and have pasture raised meats in my freezer by the time he started on table food.

It took me a year to find raw milk, but oh was it worth the wait! :) We purchased 1/4 beef, 1/2 pork and 10 chickens from a local farm last November for the average price of $3 per pound. If you've looked into the price of pastured meats, this is an AWESOME deal... from the ground beef and sausage to the filet mignon. It will last us a year.

I'm still transitioning. I try to add a new element or two every few weeks. Processed foods are gone, but there is more I want to do. Lacto fermentation, more wild seafood, more home baking (right now we go without a lot of things), the list seems endless.

The journey is worth it though. My husband has told me a few times that he feels so much better now that we're eating healthier, real food. And I am too!

Good luck on your journey.

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