A Good Book. Or an evil book. One or the other.

There are good books, and then there are good vacation books. This weekend on vacation, I read a good book. I do not recommend it for vacations, if you are like me and want to eat with anywhere you want an unrestrained conscience, like Mammy’s Kitchen and Dunkin Donuts or the place with the “world’s best French fries.” But alas, this vacation my palate was ruined for French fries. And soft ice cream, and chicken tenders. And this, my friends, is very, very hard to do.
The vicious, merciless, unforgiving harbinger of the torture is the book called “In Defense of Food.” I am glad I read it, even though I now have no idea what to eat for breakfast tomorrow.
His “thesis” is this: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” And that’s it. The part that made the most impact on me was “eat food.” So obvious, right? Not really. Apparently, much of the “food” in America today is just processed chemicals. It’s easy to dismiss these claims to the obvious imposters like Ramen and marshmallows and Cocoa Puffs. I mean deep down, we all knew God never made marshmallows, didn’t we? But it’s not just these foods. The “industrialization” of food is rampant, affecting wheat bread and low-carb spaghetti and low-fat peanut butter and almost every kind of yogurt, and ketchup and – where does it end??? Even the produce isn’t safe. Mass-produced, depleted of nutrients, covered in chemicals…I tell you, food is almost ruined for me forever.
Almost. Because then I remembered the farm. “The farm” is the term we cousins use to describe the family plot in Maryland where most of my best childhood memories are made. As a kid I loved making forts in the apple orchard and eating Schwan’s pizza with Grammy and playing flashlight tag and those sorts of things. In recent visits, I admire different things. Like the chickens who lay eggs for breakfast and the outdoor pizza oven and the land to grow whatever you want in a salad. I am reminded that it is possible to do like my book says and escape the “Western diet.” But it’s not easy. Luckily I have some good examples, like Aunt Rebecca on the farm, and others who manage to bring the farm to suburbia, in one way or another. Over the next few weeks I will be posting the thoughts of others who I respect for their healthy, frugal living. I hope you enjoy those thoughts, and I welcome yours!


2 thoughts on “A Good Book. Or an evil book. One or the other.

  1. you should follow up with his book food rules. i loved the omnivore's dilemma, too! kingsolver's animal, vegetable, miracle was also a good read. i still have tomatoes & peppers growing if you need a dose of something straight from the ground!

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