Of Information, Elephants, and Taking Back the Night


Nutrition is high on my list of burdens. The quality of what goes in my children’s mouths sits like a pregnant elephant on my back. We grow our own grass fed, antibiotic free meat. We have our own eggs and freeze a fair bit of vegetables for winter. We eat whole wheat everything. We avoid sugar. We don’t keep junk food in the house. When we need to binge, we’re at least slowed down by the need to make it and bake it.

The problem is the information overload combined with the lack of six lifetimes required to verify the “facts.”  Whatever you do, it’s never good enough. Brown rice and lentils are good for now, but after that it gets a little dicey.

Meat? Very bad. Unless it’s important. Organ meat is exceptionally good. Unless you should limit intake. Potatoes are either loaded with Vitamin C and a host of other good things, or they’re a starch so don’t have too much. Milk is good. So is cheese. Unless all the dairy products are so hormone/additive compromised that they’re actually terrible.

Green vegetables are great. Except Broccoli which the children love but which gets a lot of spraying. (This much you can verify by growing your own bug infested, skinny, odd shaped, poison free broccoli. It tastes good, but the kids don’t like this kind.) Salad is great except lettuce and cucumbers don’t do much beyond taste good and accustom people to the color green. Tomatoes are great except when they come from California and Mexico which is 90% of the year. Then they tinkle all their vitamins out on the road while simultaneously destroying the planet by coaxing the trucks to keep driving. Beans (also on the kid list of edible) are ok . . . but really not a power packed veggie the way some are. Corn, peas and sweet potatoes are “just a starch.”

Frozen beet greens, Swiss chard, spinach, and beets are excellent. I refer to them as tasters. You start out getting the kids to put a square centimeter in their mouths for dinner. Depending on the age, we’re up between one and five bites now.

Fruit is good but not as good as vegetables. Apples would be good if they weren’t so notoriously sprayed. Oranges and grapes are ok but they travel too far. Whole wheat pasta is good, unless all pasta is evil. Then there’s the wheat debate. Whether you embrace your whole grains or cast them to the outer darkness, there’s no shortage of “facts,” to support you.

I was going to give up cooking and eating. Instead I’ve decided to give up reading about nutrition for a while and am committed to forgetting at least half of what I know. For a season, the elephant has been re-homed from my back to the couch. Consequently, I have fed the family all manner of potentially dangerous things (broccoli three times!) and la ti dah.

11 Comments to Of Information, Elephants, and Taking Back the Night

  1. Chris Radford says:

    I feel your pain. By the way do you have the recipe for that yummy looking photo?

  2. Margaret Rose Realy Obl. OSB says:

    “tinkled all their vitamins out”…you are so funny! Wonderful blog.

  3. Barb Shay says:

    Lordy, Lordy, how true!

  4. Samuel Jones says:

    Wrap those tomatoes in Bacon and then we might get somewhere =)

  5. Leslie Lynch says:

    HAHAHAHAHA!!! Isn’t this the truth??!!! Butter and eggs are terrible for your heart/cholesterol – except that they aren’t. Fat-free is the way to go, except they replaced the fat with sugar. So, go sugar-free, except now they say sugar substitutes are as bad for you as sugar is…

    I give up. Gonna do my best and quit worrying about all the other stuff. For what it’s worth, I stopped buying the “good-for-you” margarine spreads and went to a butter and olive oil mix. Got tired of eating stuff that was a list of chemicals on my toast. Not only does it taste better, I don’t crave it like I used to crave the chemical-ly margarine. Go figure.

    You’re doing fine, Michelle. Sometimes ignorance is bliss. The best advice? Just keep it simple and as close to nature as you can. :-)

  6. I hear you. You try and eat things free of all those chemicals–and it is a journey into information overload. I have two apple trees that are free of any kind of pesticide chemicals. I get a few worms/bugs but since I feed the birds, the birds get their fill of bugs and worm as well. I make applesauce, apple pie filling and eat them in the raw. As you know the garden tomatoes taste so much better than those store bought ones that they tinkled all the vitamins out of. I keep praying that tons of people will only buy organic grown products then the price of them will come down and people with families can buy organic….keep praying, dreaming….

  7. Carol says:

    Great reading..and very true.
    It all seems to prove my way of thinking. Eat what you like but in

  8. Kaitlin says:

    I hear you!!! I gave up reading (and listening to well meaning friends) a while back – it was just stressing me out!! Not that their advice (read or listened to) is wrong and in fact many of the people were well ‘educated’ on their stand points – but I just chalked it up (and this is where I stand on it all right now) to the fact that, God’s got it! He knows my heart, and my limits, and my budget! 😉 And He will take care of my family weather we eat GMO free, gluten free, flavour free food or not! 😉 I still try to make the most natural choices I can for my family – I’m just not going to lose sleep over it anymore! 😉

    PS> love the comment there about adding bacon to those tomatoes!! HAHA! But so true!! 😉 lol!!

  9. claudia says:

    I agree with you, reading all the information about food stress me so much! So I decided to just follow the rule of moderation and variety, and I do my very best to only buy ingredients and not to buy ready or almost ready to eat meals. Btw in my house I have the same rule about beets :) we are in the “only one bite tast” so far