By Amanda Wilkes:
We’ve all become victims of processed foods. At times I have found myself in the downward spiral of a processed foods vortex that was seemingly impossible to retreat from. I’d notice only processed foods while trying to grab a quick bite between my college classes. While cramming for exams, the chip aisle appeared front and center, plentiful with thousands of tempting “tastes” and terrific textures, while trying to find the juicy green apples was like playing hide-n-seek. What’s worse is that, once I became accustomed to the “fake foods” filled with preservatives and trans fats, I found myself craving them and then willingly buying them. They were fast, filling and inexpensive. As a college student, those were the qualities important to me. I’m sure many of you who have busy lives, or work long hours, and/or have children or parents/grandparents to care for understand the processed food vortex that is so easily entered yet so difficult to leave.
Processing the processed foods out of your pantry and your life is no easy task, but in the end you will be the one reaping the benefits. I began processing processed foods out of my life by asking myself one simple question: How do processed foods make me feel? I recognized that after eating “fake food” I felt sluggish and grumpy. I found myself irritated at the smallest things and without the drive to participate in activities I loved. On the other hand, when I ate something that grew from the ground or on a tree or did not list more than five ingredients on its label, I felt energized, excited and empowered to make the most of my day. Once I realized that my body was craving something different from my current palate, I began processing the processed foods out of my pantry and out of my life. Eventually, my body and palate cravings aligned; together, they make the cleanest eating choices around!
We are also no strangers to the knowledge that processed foods don’t just affect our everyday attitude but that they also lead to all sorts of diseases and health issues such as high cholesterol, cancer, diabetes, heart disease and obesity, just to name a few. Eat Drink Better elaborates on why and how to avoid processed foods. So when making your foodie decisions today, try to avoid GMO foods, or those with food coloring, too many sugars, too much fat, or foods without enough fiber. Your body will thank you today and twenty years from now!