Whole Food Marathon
The idea with this challenge is that the food that you eat is sustainable, local, fresh. This is not a restrictive diet, because the only good diet is a balanced diet. This challenge is just about making your own foods rather than buying processed junk that’s been on a shelf for weeks or months. Enjoy quiche, cake, flatbread with a homemade curry, chocolate, but make it yourself; be aware of the ingredients. You really are what you eat and you realise very quickly once you get rid of the junk, quite how much processed food you consume. It is so easy to purchase highly refined and processed foods at the supermarket; sauces, ready meals, processed meat, puddings… the list is almost endless and these foods have so many additives to make them last longer and look the “right” colour you can’t keep up. This challenge is about going back to whole foods, bringing into the home raw, basic ingredients in view to eating simply all day long. Make time to get back to basics and be your own chef!
The aim, buy only basic ingredients and keep it as simple as possible for 4 weeks. That’s it! There is no way you’ll go back at the end of this challenge, it’s a detox from advertising and the food industry that we need so much. “Light”, “Diet”, food claims; it’s all marketing, just buy the freshest most local foods, look after yourself and your local farmer.
That means you don’t buy anything which is mixed, or cooked by anyone but yourself. Get back to real home cooking!
Our main purchases were:
- Red and Green lentils
- Pearl Barley
- Bulgar wheat (makes great tabbouleh with fresh parsley)
- Olive oil
- Salad leaves (British)
- Vegetables (locally sourced where possible)
- Fruit (when in season)
- Free range eggs
- All varieties of nuts (plain)
- Natural yoghurt
- Porridge Oats
- Fresh herbs (coriander, parsley, mint, basil)
- Fish and meat from the local butcher/fish monger
- Sea salt and peppercorns
The idea is not to eat boring food, actually it’s to give these up. No more sloppy processed meaty lumps masquerading as fillet in salty, sugary sauce, no more pre cut veggies or fruit, no more high fat, high sugar food which has spent days in machines getting pumped with preservatives!
Say hello to fresh, tangy, zingy salads made with delicious local vegetables and get those pulses boiling to make the most delicious filling lunches and dinners. Blitz, chop and bash fresh raw ingredients and you’ll have homemade salsa, hummus, tomato sauce and fresh mayo all within minutes!
During this whole food marathon you should find that the weekly food bill goes down, your waistline slowly reduces and your mind is awakened to the endless fresh meal possibilities. Wrongly, we often rely on factories to make our food, get to the Real Recipes section and make something for real! The intense flavours that come from fresh produce means that you don’t need much seasoning, just a crack of pepper and well married up ingredients and you should have a tasty, nutrient rich plate of food. No more “added extras” that get put into ready made food in order to make it as tasty, long lasting and colourful as supermarkets assume we desire.
Begin the challenge today! We didn’t evolve to our able bodied selves by eating pre prepared factory garbage, it was a balance of fresh local foods that got us from caveman to 21st century folk. If we want long term health we need to eat local, fresh and were possible organic (pesticide free) produce. Don’t focus on calories or fad diets, get fresh, get real and enjoy proper homemade food!