Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Weight gain is a symptom.

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This simple fact eluded my doctors for 20 years. Every doctor that I visited refused to believe that I wasn't doing something wrong to cause my weight gain. In the beginning, I knew that my eating habits hadn't changed but I gained weight anyway. I followed the doctor's orders but still gained weight steadily. As time went on, I did begin to eat more, but the weight gain started first.

We live in a fat-phobic society that just doesn't believe that weight gain is proof that there is a malfunction in the body. If the medical industry were to acknowledge and embrace this simple truth, imagine how health care could change. Doctors might actually cure people instead of simply treating symptoms.

It took me so many years to stop listening to conventional doctors' recommendations on how to lose excess weight. My health crisis proved to me that weight gain was one of the first symptoms of a much larger problem. I was allergic to corn but unable to avoid it without all the facts. My corn allergy always seemed like another random symptom until I realized that continual ingestion of corn every day in the form of food additives was killing me.

If any one of those doctors that I hired would have simply told me to avoid food additives, my health crisis would never have happened. I cooked every meal for my family anyway, I could have easily changed my modern cooking style to embrace traditional foods and pure ingredients. Instead, it took me many years of declining health and trial and error to figure that out on my own. I thought home cooked meals were healthier alternatives to fast food or junk food, but that wasn't true of modern cooking.

What is modern cooking and why is it so bad? Modern cooking is essentially taking a bunch of prepared ingredients and a few fresh ingredients and mixing them together to get meals (like most of the "chefs" on Food Network). I made casseroles from frozen vegetables, "processed cheese food" and white rice. I cooked in a crock pot using canned "cream of" soups, canned vegetables and grocery store meat. I made my own pasta sauce using canned tomatoes and garlic salt, serving it over enriched pasta. I made hamburgers and served them on prepared buns with frozen french fries. I made desserts using cake mixes and frosting in a can or prepared crusts and canned fruit. I made sandwiches using jars of condiments and deli meat on commercial bakery bread with a pickle on the side. I made breakfast biscuits using shortening and enriched flour and served it with eggs and bacon or sausage. I was busy in the kitchen making meals for my family and diligently avoiding snacks and fast foods. I just didn't realize that I was serving up a hefty dose of GMO corn with every meal. In my naivete, I never considered that the food on the shelves of my store could be harmful.

Now I am on a long journey back to health by cooking traditional meals and incorporating now rare health foods like grass fed liver, fermented condiments and raw dairy products. My family is getting healthier every day and, of course, we are losing weight.

For more information on nutrient dense, traditional foods check out Real Food Wednesday hosted this week by Kelly the Kitchen Kop. Learn something new every Wednesday, guaranteed.
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