When you learn about something that reorients your perspective, your first instinct is to throw yourself wholeheartedly into supporting this new way of thinking. If change doesn’t happen as rapidly or completely as you’d wish, discouragement and disillusionment easily creep up.
This happened to me last year, after I stumbled across the term “real, or traditional food,” and quickly became passionate about holistic health, discovering the way our American diet has become so far removed from what truly nourishes our bodies and how we can get back to better nutrition.
I have learned a lot (if someone had said “kombucha!” to me last year, I would have said “bless you!”) about eating things as close to the way God created it. I’d love to say that I eat no processed food anymore, that our freezer is full of grass fed beef, our fridge with raw milk, and our pantry with organic canned tomatoes that came from our garden.
But it’s just not true.
I’ve made some changes yes, but they seemed very small compared to my ideals. I felt guilty for serving my family food (or, gasp, going through the drive thru) that was below my new-found standards. I felt guilty because I knew better, but was limited by a very tight food budget and the learning curve of juggling my time as a homemaker and new mom.
Here’s where Trina Holden’s book, Your Real Food Journey, came into the picture. When this book released late summertime, I got my hands on a copy and read it cover to cover in two sittings. After I put it down, a weight fell off my shoulders and I sighed with relief.
Trina is a voice full of understanding for the person brimming with enthusiasm, but burnt out with the reality of making so many changes. She reminded me that there was grace–that life is a process, and creating better habits is a journey. She also pointed me back to resting peacefully in God, and how obsessing over healthy eating can easily turn it into an idol or a means of fear or control.
The book gave clear direction in how to continue on the right path at a realistic pace. It is also intensely practical, with delicious recipes approved by the whole family, down to earth explanations of how certain foods affect us (specifically, I was helped in understanding why some oils are not ideal to be heated, or how cultured foods aid our digestion), and steps to take in whatever leg of journey you are on.
While I appreciate the wisdom from the real food expert who eats everything off their own farm, it can be daunting to learn from someone you feel has everything together. Although I would definitely consider Trina an expert, she is also refreshingly honest about where she is on the journey herself, and it helped me realize that I don’t have to be doing it all to be consider myself committed to eating real food.
So, I’m back on the path with a new vision for lasting changes and freedom from guilt.
In looking back, I’ve realized that the changes made so far are not insignificant. During the past year, I started making my own bone broth, removed processed oils from our pantry and started using coconut and olive oil instead, brewing kombucha (a probiotic rich fermented tea beverage), replacing white sugar with sucanat as much as possible, and inspired by Trina’s book, I recently started making homemade yogurt and sauerkraut.
That’s great progress! And I’m motivated to continue, one change at a time.
What progress have you made on your real food journey? Maybe you are at the very beginning or don’t even know what is considered “real food.” Maybe you have a lot of experience but need some cheering on to keep it up.
Either way, I think the Your Real Food Journey book will bless you with guidance and encouragement–and just plain yummy, nourishing recipes to test out in your own kitchen!