Thursday, November 18, 2010

Real Food by Nina Planck

After a few months of buying "low fat", "light", and other supposedly healthy foods, I wanted to know more about my choices. Which choices were best? Yes, I knew vegetables were good for you, but which ones were the most packed with nutrients? Etc.

I came across Nina Planck's book "Real Food". I don't even recall exactly how I stumbled across it, but it was the first book that opened my eyes to the idea that the government's "food pyramid" might not be all it's cracked up to be.

It has been over a year since I last read this book, so my overview will be short, but I do want to give this book a mention since it was a huge turning-point in my philosophy of what I considered "healthy".

Nina Planck talks about growing up on real food, then how she abandoned the diet she was raised on in search of "virtuous diets" (aka: vegetarian/vegan diets), then her return to an omnivorous real food diet. She advocates eating meat, eggs, and raw milk from pastured livestock; as well as a variety of fruits and vegetables. And she discusses the reasons behind why traditional food is far superior, both in nutrition and taste, to the modern food-like substances that fill our grocery stores.

I personally was amazed at the nutritional differences between meat from wild/pastured animals and meat from feedlot animals. This book also introduced me to the ideas that fat (traditional fats, such as lard, olive oil, and coconut oil; not modern fats like margarine and soybean oil) and cholesterol were in fact not "bad", but essential parts to the human diet.

I recommend this book as a great intro book for anyone interested in really improving their diet beyond (or should I say "in contrast to") the current government dietary recommendations.

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