S2 E30 Back to Basics: Food
Discussion topics in this episode:
- We’re on the hunt for solutions and having access to nutrient-rich “premium” foods is critical to life, the old adage is very true: You are what you eat and it affects how you think. Food is more than fuel, it provides the building blocks to replace your cells as they die. If you have any skepticism that the quality of the calories you ingest has a direct impact on your internal biological processes including mental health, then check out this article which is similar to that RWJ referenced during the episode: “Crime and nourishment – the link between food and offending behaviour” (UK). Beyond the obvious concerns about malnutrition, it’s another example of how our system does little to rehabilitate humans that become fodder for profit in the prison industrial complex.
- Food is our first line of defense for healthcare. Ultimately, the best way for each of us to care for our health multiple times per day is to care for the food that we eat. You want a premium body and mind that stands the test of time? Then eat premium foods and drink water. Don’t believe it, check the National Institutes for Health: Increased Intake of Foods with High Nutrient Density Can Help to Break the Intergenerational Cycle of Malnutrition and Obesity. How’s that for health care!
- Rewilding (see episode 28) and community gardens can provide us with abundant opportunities to introduce affordable, sustainable, local, and nutrient-rich foods. Not to mention how working in a garden stimulates our sense of belonging, community, and connectedness to nature and each other.
- Eating happy meats make for happy people. MVP is calling “happy meat” the result of happy animals living a natural normal stress life, filled with love and a nutrient-rich grass diet. All grass (think greens) means all the omega fatty acids your body and brain need, factory-produced fish oil need not apply!
- Call to Action: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” The new food golden rule – thank you, Michael Pollan (author of the book In Defense of Food). Take this rule and find some new habits that work for you! Golden rule unpacked:
- Food is anything with less than 10 ingredients with nothing inside that your great or great-great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize. If an ingredient sounds like a science concoction, don’t eat it!
- Not too much! Come on now, if you’re not running a marathon then you probably don’t need that much fuel. Pro tip: you can’t eat too many fruits or vegetables! Physically it’s just not likely. Now don’t go off and overdose on carrots, too much of any one thing is not good.
- Mostly plants, yes! The biodiversity and nutrient richness of plants is many, many, many times greater than meats. We biologically don’t need to eat a lot of meat, so it’s high time to cut way back. Milk (as adults) and cheese are nice-to-haves for those who can digest them. Meat example: MVP strives to include happy meat (free-range naturally-fed and finished) component in up to 5 meals per week. Assume he eats like two or three meals per day. The portion is small, like a palmful of meat – not a steak.
- Mindfulness is an exercise that can be performed in any environment at any time you can provide focused attention. Be open to the testaments of your senses. Occupy your mind with what you hear, see, smell, feel, and taste using all of your available sensors. It’s a great reset for the mind, your nervous system, and primes your biome for digestion.
- Focus on the Adds. One more tip MVP found useful when embarking on any transition in life: focus on adding things you want into your life and other less valuable things in your life will naturally attrite. As another phrase goes, it’s all about the bear you feed. So just focus on adding in one new healthful thing at a time. As you add, naturally other things will fall out simply due to space, time, and attention constraints. Give it a try by grabbing a vegetable from a local farmer’s market that you have never had before, or where it’s been a while since you had it, and experiment using it in a favorite dish. The farmer at the market can give you great tips on storing and preparing items too! Find a local butcher and get to know what happy meats they may have.
- Michael V. Piscitelli
- Raymond Wong Jr.
- Food deserts (thanks again Wikipedia) are a problem throughout the United States. Albeit we didn’t focus on it in this episode, it will be a topic in the future for this podcast or another project from Citizen Do Good.
- Crime and Nourishment. Cause for a rethink? This article from the National Institutes for Health (NIH) really puts the focus on the effects of food from studying the largest captive group of humans on earth, United States prison populations. 🙁
- We also didn’t get into the pressures against healthful foods, including big agri-business (high margins and low-quality foods for profit) and pharma (drugs for profit to compensate for the effects from years of eating low-quality foods). Yes, they both have us in a race to the bottom. Your food can free you from medications in many cases. One of the most prevalent food-based diseases, besides heart disease, is diabetes. A repeat of the link above: Increased Intake of Foods with High Nutrient Density Can Help to Break the Intergenerational Cycle of Malnutrition and Obesity.
Special thanks to
- Our ongoing supporters, thank you!
- Our sponsor CitizenDoGood.com .
- Intro music sampled from “Okay Class” by Ozzy Jock under creative commons license through freemusicarchive.org.
- Other music provided royalty-free through Fesliyan Studios Inc.
Image: Michael Pollan quote.