On a predictable weekly basis, I’ve been asked to support and participate in the “Meatless Monday” movement, by posting vegetarian/vegan recipes on my blog. After careful consideration, I’ve decided to respectfully decline. While I have absolutely nothing against an increased consumption of fruits and vegetables, I simply consider the thought-process behind Meatless Mondays to be excessively broad, misleading, and not necessarily healthy. A day’s nutrition consisting of donuts for breakfast, a Ramen-type cup of noodles for lunch, and macaroni and cheese for dinner would qualify as a successful “Meatless” day. However, it doesn’t take a PhD in nutrition to know that the aforementioned day is a resounding failure in the high-quality, nutrient-dense food choice department.
Instead, I’ve decided to go with a more sensible option: Unprocessed Mondays.
A Primal/Paleo diet has done wonders for my health, my vitality, and my overall quality of life. And while I could fall into the trap of having this become the “My-diet-is-better-than-your-diet” discussion that flood discussions boards ad nauseum, I won’t. Whether you choose to be vegetarian, vegan, omnivore, pescetarian, fruitarian, primal, or paleo–great, the choice is yours! In the Age of Information, where everyone is a PhD in (insert googled-subject here), the answer to any question is only a click away. While the abundance of information is a great thing, the unfortunate reality is that for every bit of sound information, there is an “equal-and-opposite” opinion, with cherry-picked data to support it. In the end, nobody is convinced–cognitive dissonance be damned!
In search for convenience, simplicity, and practicality we have forgotten how to eat. Instead of eating real and nurturing foods we are eating food-like products that lack nutrition and are filled with hybridized wheat, reconstituted corn or soy, genetically modified organisms, artificial colors, preservatives, and chemicals proven to be harmful. We are allowing food manufacturers to feed us highly addictive concoctions of fat, sugar, fillers, and starches and have disregarded the fact that we need food for nourishment and not as a sole source of calories.
I defined processed as anything that has been heated, pressurized, irradiated, or preserved to obtain a longer shelf life. These “foods” come usually packaged in bags, boxes, or cans. And while I am not suggesting that you should make your own olive oil or head out to the nearest ocean to collect water to make your own sea salt, perhaps you can start “slowly”. Replace crackers with an apple. Throw out your soda and drink tea. Or even better, drink water!
Together, we can stop this epidemic of obesity, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and other lifestyle diseases that are plaguing modern societies. I am calling for a change in how we see and prepare our food. Each and every day should be nourishing, let’s start with Mondays–Unprocessed Mondays!