Friday, September 11, 2009

Food for Thought

Over the last decade, or so, I have had little blips that made me "watch what I eat". The first was in my Organic Chemistry class at SDSU in 1994. We were discussing the chemical make up of aspartame, a methyl ester of a phenylalanine / aspartic acid dipeptide (thanks Wikipedia). This is also known as Nutrasweet and Equal. At the time, I was learning about this chemical, I had a cup, strike that, vat of Diet Coke in my hand. While I would like to say this made an immediate impact on my decision to finish my beverage, it was hot in the room and the addiction was already set, so I had to finish it.

It wasn't until quite a few years later, when I was on a trip where you were not allowed to bring soda on board the ship since you would be creating extra trash, that reality really hit me. I went without the first day, then I had a blinding headache, which led me to my duffle where I had snuck one on board. Seriously, I hid in my sleeping bag and cracked it open and slugged it down. Not a pretty picture. When we returned to shore, I cut myself off. I am sure the headache was due to a lack of caffeine in my system, but the diagrams from yesteryear came back to me and I knew I was going to cut myself off.

Then I became pregnant with our son in 2002. As mothers-in-waiting know, you can become a bit obsessive about what will actually find its way to your mouth. No more caffeine. No more high fructose corn syrup. No more processed flours. This all sounds good, right? I was ON it! Then our son was born and it was all about what would actually go into his mouth. Overall, we have been pretty good, farmer's markets, CSAs, whole foods, this summer we even started our own garden.

This week my husband and I watched "King Corn", my reading group's selection of the month is "Vegetable Animal Miracle" by Barbara Kingsolver, and last month was "Julie and Julia". So you see, I have food on the brain and I am trying to figure out what to do with all of this information. Do I start a movement for eating locally with local moms? Do I put my family on a 6 month corn hiatus (I love a challenge)?

We live on a beautiful island in the Pacific Northwest where farm goods are available and it is possible to have a garden in your yard. So if we cannot make it happen here, can it happen anywhere? So I am pondering how I can provide good, healthy, delicious, local food for my family, regularly and I have a lot to learn. This will be a log of that journey.

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