Last week, we talked about cheap choices in our diets and different ways it can affect our health. You can check the post out, The Renewal Process Part I, here. This week, I will cover the expensive and sensible routes when making food choices. Taking the cheap route, as we discussed last week, is kind of an oxymoron. Choosing the cheap route regarding what we eat, can actually be the most expensive one, in the long run. Eating all of that garbage food will eventually catch up to us. Most all chronic diseases are caused by the industrialized diets we consume. One thing we should all remember, 80% of our body composition is what we eat. The other 20% comes from exercise, sleep, and stress management. So, let’s get on with the expensive food choices.
The Expensive Route
Looking at the expensive path in our food choices, we are not going to take the health approach. We know the cheap path will cost us more in the long run, regarding our health. No, we are going to examine it from a budget perspective and some misconceptions people may have.
Expensive Diet Misconceptions
Shopping at Whole Foods is Always Healthier:
This is a huge one. The last time I checked, Whole Foods was laid out just like every other grocery store. This rings true for almost every store, real food around the outside, junk in the middle. There are exceptions to the rule, you can find plenty of good choices in the middle if you know where to look. Check out this post about how to shop like a hunter-gatherer. I’m not down on Whole Foods, they have plenty of good choices and sometimes good deals. I just don’t want you to fall in the trap of thinking you’re eating healthy, because you shop there. Below I have the labels form a Payday candy bar, and a 365 Blueberry Cereal Bar. Can you guess what label belongs to what product?
The one on the left is the Payday bar. One could argue that the candy bar would be healthier based on how much sugar it contains vs the blueberry bar, it also contains more protein and fats. The Blueberry Bar calories are coming from carbohydrates for the most part, and we all know that sugar is bad. I would categorize both of these as the Cheap Route and wouldn’t recommend anyone eat them.
Next time, you’re shopping at Whole Foods, read the labels and don’t splurge when you know you can get it someplace different at a better price. Many times, you can find good deals there, and Whole Foods is a good place to break up that diet rut. They carry many products you will never find at the mega-mart.
Don’t Fall in Love with the Grocery Subscription Box:
I’ll clarify first, you can get some high-quality products from the subscription box, but it’s going to cost you. I’m going to be honest here, my wife (I love you) has a problem with this. She has tried various subscriptions and every time, after we get a few boxes, we cancel the subscription. We always come to the conclusion, that we can source something locally, that is just as good or better for a better price.
Here are a couple of examples. You buy an assortment pack of meat, and don’t get me wrong it’s all organic, and pasture raised stuff, high quality. The issue is, the box is mostly chicken, and cheaper cuts. If you break it out by the pound you’re getting ripped off. One popular option is $130 dollars a month for about 10lbs of meat, that $13 dollars a pound. You could probably shop at Whole Foods for less money. At the most expensive grocery store in my town, I can get organic chickens all day long, at $2.50 per pound and buy 100% grass-fed ground beef, at $6 per pound. Grass-fed NY strips for $16 a pound, you do the math. I could buy exactly what’s in the box for far less money.
There are a lot of produce subscription options out there, as well. You are receiving organic produce, and at times the quality is in question. The latest one we have experience with cost $80 a week!!! It’s mostly filled with the cheaper stuff as well, like sweet potatoes and onions. When you look at the label a lot of it is coming from other countries. What are you gaining, really? $320 a month, that’s a lot, never fall for this gimmick. I could buy 128lbs of organic spinach at my local market for the same price. The better choice would be to shop at your local farmers market, you’ll get the highest quality, for a better price. A CSA can be a good option as well, and sometimes a rip-off, know what you’re buying.
How to be Sensible on Food Choices
Read the labels: If you are buying processed packaged snacks, know what you’re getting. A bag of pork rinds is better for you than a blueberry cereal bar, no kidding.
Get whole snacks: things like nuts, beef jerky, 88% dark chocolate, and berries are all good snack choices.
Know what you’re spending: break things down by price per pound or ounce. The 100% grass-fed beef, at the discount store, is probably the same thing your buying at Whole foods, for an inflated price. Don’t fall for the subscription boxes!
Never fall for marketing: Every store out there has thousands of products marketed as healthy. DO NOT fall for the hype, it’s an illusion. Out of all the stuff marketed as healthy, maybe 5% actually is, educate yourself.
We all have the ability to go through a renewal process in our bodies, by making good food choices. In my opinion, you can pick whatever lifestyle, diet choices you like, keto, whole30, or Paleo. I follow the Primal Blueprint, because it works for me, and makes sense from an evolutionary standpoint.
The end goal, for all of us, should be eliminating all of the packaged, refined and processed foods from our diets. If we did, doctors and pharmaceutical companies would start going out of business. Let me know what lifestyle/diet choices work for you and the difficulties you have faced.
Until Next Time