We are going to give you the steps and tools you need to eat real food and start feeding your family healthy meals.
We will even be sharing what the number one key to cooking healthy meals is.
Ready? Click here!
If not, keep reading to find out what real food is and why you should even bother with it.
Importance of Real Food
Do you know how important it is to eat real whole foods?
Do you wish you could give your own family real food everyday, but you are overwhelmed and don’t know how?
You are not alone. So many others feel that lack of time, knowledge, cooking skills and/or a tight budget prohibit them from following a real food diet.
But understand that replacing processed garbage with non-processed food is not a luxury for those who happen to have extra time, money, or cooking skills. It’s a necessity for everyone!
It’s not an option if you want your children to thrive and stay healthy when everyone else at school gets sick. Or if you want to be at your best to meet the needs of your family.
If more people prioritized meal planning and cooking at home the current path of our food system and health would be redirected.
Getting Real in Your Kitchen teaches busy moms how to meal plan for their families. If you are new here, please take a look at the following:
And while you are here, grab a free recipe eBook, 7 Mix and Match Meals, that has easy, kid-friendly, real food recipes!
Real Food Made Possible
So don’t be misled. This is something that can be done, and needs to be done! It’s not for the privileged few who seem to have nothing else to do but cook and plan meals.
Because it’s actually very doable. Meal planning and preparation can be done simply, quickly and affordably.
You don’t have to spend hours planning and cooking.
Nor do you have to follow complicated recipes.
And you don’t have to spend a ridiculous amount of money to get healthy food.
So stop thinking it’s out of reach. We want to show you it is very much within your reach if you are willing to take the steps needed!
Are you convinced? Click here to jump to the section where you can achieve this
But if you still aren’t sure, read on to discover what real food actually is and why it’s so important.
Who should eat real food?
Everyone should be eating real food.
Your health depends on it!
- You should eat real food.
- And your family.
- And all of your friends.
- As a matter of fact, everyone should eat real food!
What is real food?
When you think of real food, picture what your great grandmother ate. She didn’t fill her grocery cart with processed, want to be foods. She sourced the best, fresh foods she could find for her family.
Your great grandmother bought ingredients and she used her healthy food recipes (most likely they were in her head) and she created 3 nourishing meals every day.
There were no take out places available. If she and her family were going to be gone for the day she likely would have packed the food and snacks that would have been needed.
Lots of times she probably went out to her garden and picked the ripe, seasonal fruits and vegetables she had previously planted.
She might have had her own chickens or an Eggman might have made daily visits with fresh eggs. And a milkman might have made daily visits with fresh milk.
Her meat and poultry were probably locally sourced.
Real Food Defined
- Real food is the food your grandmother ate.
- It generally does not come in a package.
- And many times it’s an ingredient in a recipe.
- If it is in a package it should have no more than 5 ingredients.
- No refined grains.
- And no refined sweeteners.
- And no fast food.
Real Food Examples
- Fruits and vegetables. Fresh or frozen and organic is best.
- Whole milk dairy products.
- Eggs from free range, humanely raised (look for the certification label) chickens.
- Whole, organic grains.
- Wild caught seafood.
- Locally raised, organic, free range chicken.
- Locally raised, organic, grass-fed meats.
- Filtered water, organic tea, organic coffee.
- All natural sweeteners such as honey, 100% maple syrup, dates.
Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t worry, most of us don’t fit the great grandmother picture given above.
But there is a way, even in today’s crazy busy world, to feed your family healthy, nourishing, real food.
And we can show you how.
So relax and learn with us one step at a time.
If you are ready to learn, click here! If not, keep reading for more information about real food.
When is the time to eat real food?
Every meal is a time for real food. Every time you nourish your body you are a step closer to good health and well being.
Where is the place to eat real food?
Every place is the place for real food.
We will show you how to turn your kitchen into a real food kitchen and the tools and equipment you will need so that you will be turning out real food meals before you know it.
And we can show you how to be ready to always eat real food no matter where you go!
- In your kitchen.
- In your dining room.
- Even in your backyard.
- And when on the go.
Why should you eat real food?
Now that you understand what real food is and that it can be a part of your busy life, you may be wondering why you should even bother.
It turns out, there are many good reasons to eat real food instead of prepackaged meals.
Processed food = way too much sugar. This addictive nutrient is added to improve taste and make us eat more, resulting in higher profits for food companies.
Real food has less sugar and it’s paired with fiber to control its rate of absorption.
Sugar is everywhere! Diana Herrington gives us a list of other names sugar is called by in packaged food:
corn syrup, dextrin, dextrose, fructose, fruit juice concentrate, high-fructose corn syrup, galactose, glucose, honey, hydrogenated starch, invert sugar maltose, lactose, mannitol, maple syrup, molasses, polyols, sorghum, sucrose, sorbitol, and xylitol.
Our bodies need nutrients, but a bag of chips isn’t going to fill that need. Instead, we still feel hungry after eating chips, so we grab more junk food, vainly trying to satisfy our hunger.
To make matters worse, many processed foods spark the reward center of the brain, making them addictive.
Real food does not carry the same risks. Whole foods satisfy your body’s craving for specific nutrients but don’t have ingredients that cause overeating.
No Dangerous Ingredients
Processed foods are filled with chemicals, fillers, and additives. You won’t find these in real foods.
Supports Good Gut Health
The average American’s diet of fake food has played a large part in the leaky gut epidemic, which causes all sorts of issues, such as autoimmune diseases.
The majority of the immune system resides in the gut, so processed foods weaken immunity, decreasing the body’s ability to fight off illnesses.
Rather than inflame and tear your gut apart, prebiotics found within many real foods feed the good gut bacteria.
Some of the best prebiotic foods include:
- Green Bananas
Cheap Source of Vitamins and Minerals
Taking an isolated nutrient in a pill likely won’t correct nutritional deficiencies. It’s not that simple.
There is so much we don’t yet understand about nutrition. How nutrients are absorbed and converted largely depends on a number of variables, such as the presence of other nutrients, the ratios of the various nutrients…
Many specific nutrients actually require other specific nutrients and in the right ratios to be properly utilized. Isn’t it amazing that real food has the right combos in the right amounts?
Also, many supplements are synthetic and aren’t recognizable by the body. The better quality supplements that are more likely to be absorbed are expensive compared to the cost of fruits and vegetables.
The packages of fake foods often boast of added vitamins and minerals. Beware! These are most likely synthetic.
Processing eliminates valuable nutrients, creating the need to supplement or add them back in. Rather than buy expensive supplements, just eat food that is real.
No Man-Made Fats
Despite the long-held belief that fat should be avoided, we need it to thrive.
But the key is getting the right kinds of fats.
Fats added to processed foods are what you want to steer clear of.
Animal fats, avocados, coconut oil, butter, and olive oil are a few examples of real food fats that are really good for you.
Don’t believe me? See for yourself in the studies listed below:
- Monounsaturated fatty acids, olive oil and health status: a systematic review and meta-analysis of cohort studies.
- Effects of dietary coconut oil on the biochemical and anthropometric profiles of women presenting abdominal obesity.
- Dietary omega-3 fatty acids aid in the modulation of inflammation and metabolic health.
Prevents Many Diseases
Real food has antioxidants that can fight off cancer and heart disease.
Many real foods are also anti-inflammatory, unlike a plethora of processed foods. Being that inflammation is linked to many, if not most, diseases, it’s important to keep it at bay.
Real food might also help lower blood sugar in diabetics and pre-diabetics, as seen in this study:
And here are some more studies showing real food’s ability to fight against diseases:
- Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease with a Mediterranean Diet
- Fruit and Vegetable Consumption and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease: A Meta-Analysis of Cohort Studies
- Fruit and vegetable consumption in adolescence and early adulthood and risk of breast cancer
It almost seems too good to be true, but eating real food can be an effective strategy to combat signs of aging. Saturated and monounsaturated fat seem to tighten skin and decrease wrinkles, as seen in the following study:
I could go on, but I’m pretty sure that by now you are convinced the benefits of eating real food is worth it!
How to Start Eating Real Food
If you are overwhelmed and don’t know where to start, we can show you what to do.
We know what steps you should take.
So read on and take action!
Make a goal
Where do you want to be a month from now? Remember not to bite off more than you can chew, otherwise, you will get discouraged and give up.
Keep your goals realistic and attainable. Once you know what you want to achieve, plot the steps you will need to take in order to reach them.
Example: Maybe your goal is to cook at home five nights a week. Start out with once per week, then at your own pace increase to two nights, then three nights…
Tip: It’s often helpful to take a week by week approach. For example, cut out soda one week, then next week replace breakfast cereals with real food breakfasts.
Learn what real food is and what real food isn’t
If you read the whole article, good for you! You already know what real food is.
For those of you who skipped to this section, see here for our definition of real food.
Replace processed food with real food
If you have lots of processed food in your pantry and fridge it’s not just going to disappear. You will need to get rid of it or stop buying it as you use it up.
And when you start cooking more you will need the right tools.
Don’t be overwhelmed! Our post on how to create a real food kitchen is just what you need to guide you through the process.
While you are there, be sure to grab our 12 easy steps to start eating real food.
Think you can’t afford to eat healthy food?
You can’t afford not to!
And don’t worry, it’s probably not as costly as you think.
In fact, we have helpful money saving tips in our post about Meal Planning on a Budget.
Visit the post to discover our tips and grab a freebie that includes even more ways to save money on groceries!
We get it. You’re busy.
But you aren’t too busy to feed your family healthy, nourishing meals.
See our time-saving tips and tools in our blog post about Making Time For Real Food.
Cook a healthy breakfast
We know it can be tempting to grab cereal, pop tarts, or another unhealthy quick breakfast. But is that really going to fuel you (or you kids?) for the rest of the day?
We think not.
Luckily for you, we have some busy morning breakfast ideas that are super easy and tasty! Some of them can even be made ahead of time.
And check out our Pinterest board for even more real food, healthy breakfast recipes.
Pack healthy snacks
Gradually replace your on the go snacks with healthier options, such as:
- Fresh fruit
- Cut up veggies and hummus
- Handful of nuts
- Celery sticks with peanut butter and raisins
Although we don’t recommend most health food bars on the market, Real Food Bar is one exception. It contains all real food ingredients. This bar lives up to its name!
Make healthy desserts
Okay, let’s be clear. When we say “healthy” desserts what we really mean is “better for you” desserts.
What is better for you? Homemade treats made with real food ingredients. Swap out store-bought treats for these and you are already doing better.
Get some ideas from our Pinterest board
Learn how to cook easy dinner recipes
Maybe you are a novice cook. That’s okay.
You can start out with an easy dinner recipe, then gradually add more easy recipes to your repertoire.
There is no need to have complicated recipes. We feel this only discourages cooking at home. The way to success is to keep your recipes simple.
We have lots of easy, healthy dinner ideas for busy weeknights on our Pinterest board
And be sure to grab a free recipe eBook, 7 Mix and Match Meals, that has easy, kid-friendly, real food recipes!
Now for the major key: Planning Ahead
Here at Getting Real, we firmly believe that the number one key to succeeding with a real food, healthy diet is to plan ahead!
If you are serious, you will need an easy meal planning system that is stress-free, efficient, flexible and customizable to your family’s specific and ever-changing needs.
It just so happens we have that system and we can teach it to you! Start planning your meals and feeding your family healthy food!
- Now you know what real food is and what it isn’t.
- We’ve explained the benefits of a real food diet.
- We gave you the steps to start eating real food.
- And we divulged the number one key to it all: planning your meals.
Do you struggle with meal planning? Get our super easy system for stress-free meal planning today!
Now that you understand why real food is so important, please help us get the word out.
Share this post on Facebook, tell everyone you know, lead by example. The cause is important!
Also, please comment below to tell us what your biggest struggle is in eating a real food diet. We want to help!
Remember, real food is not a luxury, it’s a necessity.