Wednesday, May 21, 2008

My inspiration

Today I read this article in the New York Times magazine by Michael Pollan and it completely resonated with me me as I have been thinking about reforming my eating style for quite some time.

At the end of the article, he outlines 9 basic tenets.  For some reason, I can't copy and paste them all here (you should know that this is my first blog, and I'm definitely a novice), but here they are in brief:

1. Eat food.
2. Avoid food products bearing health claims.
3. Avoid food products containing unfamiliar names or food products with high fructose corn syrup.
4. Get out of the supermarket.
5. Pay more, eat less.
6.  Eat mostly plants, especially leaves.
7.  Eat more like the French, Italians, Japanese, Greeks.
8. Cook and if you can, plant a garden.
9. Eat like an omnivore.  Add new species and foods.

I plan to follow these rules for 30 days, beginning June 1, but hopefully I will be able to uphold many of these principles for longer than 30 days. 

At first glance, some of these look pretty easy.  Getting out of the supermarket, for example, won't be too much of a challenge.  There's a Farmer's Market less than 2 miles from me on Sunday (I think?)  and a really good one that I've been to a few times in Culver City.  Typically I would go to the Farmer's Market to get things like hummus, pita chips, a few veggies, plums, and assorted food from vendors (chicken empanadas, sausages, roasted chicken, etc.).  So not too bad... but now I'll be purposefully shopping for more veggies.  And I'll have to make a commitment to go on a weekly basis.

Others, like "eat mostly plants", are tough.  I like meat.  I like it a lot.  It's tough for me to imagine a dinner without meat.  I sometimes scoff at people who order salad at restaurants while I bite into a nice juicy hamburger.  Life's too short for arugula, I would think.  Or I would roll my eyes at the women who would sit down to a plate of baby field greens while their date gnaws on a porterhouse.  That's not me, I would say, triumphantly.  I eat what I want.  Restrictions on eating always seemed to be a "feminine" thing and I resisted any attempts to play into the "I'll just have a salad" stereotype.  But I'm starting to see and realize that what I consume directly impacts my overall health and the world around me.   I'm not going to cut meat out of my diet completely, but I'm not going to let it be the centerpiece.  Meat is a side dish.  That's my new mantra.

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