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Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Take back control of your food

How healthy we are determines the quality and quantity of the life we lead and what we eat is an important factor in ensuring we are healthy and remain healthy. Modern society has lost its connection with food and we need to become more conscious of where our food comes from and how its processed. In the everything now and quickly society we have become dependant on fast foods, ready meals and we think cooking involves opening tins, jars and packets of  ingredients produced by food scientists. We have been deceived into believing that our modern diets are healthy by a food industry with large advertising budgets. But the results of this illusion that our food is healthy are the ever higher rates of obesity, diabetes and heart problems.

Making your own food from raw, fresh and home grown produce is amazingly easy and very satisfying. We made bread today and the kitchen smelt great and the bread, just out of the oven, was delicious. We are trying to make as much of our own food as we can. Making your own food reduces your intake of sugar, salt and fat which are found in almost all processed foods. Not to mention preservatives, artificial colouring and artificial flavourings. Of course not all processed food is bad for us but the less processed the healthier.

It is quite easy, with recipes abundant on the net, to re-skill ourselves and make most of the food products we buy. Whatever we have grown or made in the kitchen always tastes better than the same produce from the supermarket shelf. Eating unprocessed food straight from the garden and cooked the same day in the kitchen is good for our bodies, good for the environment and re-connects us to our food.

It's an exiting challenge to try and make something new on a regular basis. We have recently made marmalade, lemon curd, lemon squash, peanut cookies and lovely cakes. This week we cooked beetroot straight from the garden and the cooking time was much quicker and the taste much better. Most things we buy can be made at home with a bit of research. 

Whenever food is debated, one thing always heard is that healthy diets are not for the poor as a healthy diet is expensive. This is so untrue, a change in eating habits, growing some of your own food and cooking with raw ingredients will reduce food costs.

The recent revival in allotment gardening and the fact that vegetable seed sales have overtaken flower seeds are indications that there is a growing challenge to the control of our food by large corporations. People want healthier food and the best way of achieving control is to grow as much of your own food as time permits. Whether you have time to commit to an allotment or grow some herbs and tomatoes at home you are      
taking a step towards controlling what you eat. Re-skill yourself by learning to grow your own and by cooking and making as much of your own food as you can.

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