What is Real Food?

What is the meaning of food

Here is the common definition:  food is any nutritious substance that people or animals eat or drink, or that plants absorb, in order to maintain life and growth. That’s the key – maintain life and growth.

Sadly, the foods that are not doing this are often the favourites amongst kids like soft drinks and fast food. These foods compromise health. It is our responsibility as parents to ensure optimal health. The World Health Organization (WHO) defined health as “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”.

Fake foods do not do this.

Let’s first start with the basics and differentiate between real, and what I like to call fake foods.

What is real food?

In my opinion, it is simply a food that gives more than it takes. It could be giving sustained balanced energy and not a roller coaster ride; it creates vitality, life, growth, and optimal development.

Here are some characteristics of real food, its:

  • Whole
  • Unprocessed and unrefined
  • From nature
  • Something your grandparents would have recognized and possibly eaten
  • Naturally preserved, like brine
  • Real found is found in the fresh food section and at farmers markets
  • Nutrient-dense

So what is fake food?

Well, the opposite. Fake food takes more than it gives, spikes blood sugar to only have you crash an hour or two later robbing your energy, creating fatigue, stripping your body of vitamins and minerals to cope with processing it which affects long term vitality,  life, growth, and development.

Here are some characteristics of fake food, its:

  • Processed
  • Refined
  • Full of additives, artificial colourings, flavourings, preservatives
  • Fortified with vitamins
  • Contains multiple ingredients
  • Heavily packaged
  • Heavily marketed and endorsed often by celebrities
  • Often represented as ‘cool’ to eat or drink
  • Long use by date – there is a saying the longer the use-by date the food, the shorter is yours.
  • Fake foods are all around us / found in supermarket shelves and convenience stores
  • Empty calories
  • It is sadly often the case that the more man touches the food, the worse it is.

So I hope that clarifies what foods you should be aiming for if you ever get lost start with these 3 rules:

  1. Is it close to its original state that it exists in nature?
  2. Do we need to buy it fresh? So if possible shop at farmers markets – support your local farmer and you will support your own health.
  3. Would people over 100 years ago have recognized this food and eaten it? Yes, they refined some foods, but generally, it’s a good rule.

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