Do you remember the days of bacon and eggs, milk in glass bottles with the cream on top and freshly churned butter til the cows came home?
They were the good old days. But then the low fat era came along. Suddenly, everyone was swapping their butter for margarine, ditching the bacon for ‘healthy’ wholegrain cereal and drinking milk so low in fat it resembled dish water.
It’s hard to get excited about these foods, it really is. And the funny thing is, we aren’t any healthier for the deprivation we’ve suffered. Cardiovascular disease is on the rise as are other lifestyle related conditions including type 2 diabetes and obesity. Osteoporosis is a huge concern amongst the ageing population and a deficiency in the fat soluble vitamins D and K play a role in this disease. No doubt you, or someone you know is suffering from one or several of these conditions.
But what happened to our food when they took out all the fatty, tasty stuff? Well, they had to find an alternative that would provide ‘flavour’ so in went the sugar and lots of it. Most cereals in fact contain more than 6 teaspoons of sugar per serve which is close to our daily allowance. And that’s just breakfast. We have also seen a huge increase in the use of artificial colours and flavours which also don’t do our health any favours. Food used to be sourced in the paddock and shortly after land on our plates. Now, food comes in boxes and packages and you need a chemistry degree to understand what the ingredients are and how they are manufactured. Some of the foods we are encouraged to eat have a longer life expectancy then us!
Perhaps we had it right the first time. Even from a common sense perspective, fresh, real food with all its trimmings and all its fat sounds far healthier than sugar and chemical laden products wrapped in plastic. Maybe you could dip your toe in and start allowing yourself some of these ‘indulgences’ once again because as it turns out, you’ll be healthier for it.
Here are some ideas to start you off.
Swap margarine for butter
Butter is a valuable source of the fat soluble vitamin K to help protect against osteoporosis and heart disease. Also contains vitamin E and vitamin B12 and it tastes amazing!
Bring back the eggs!
For a long time there we were told to watch our consumption of eggs due to cholesterol. However, recent studies have showed that dietary cholesterol doesn’t have much to do with blood cholesterol levels. Eggs are an amazing source of so many vitamins and minerals so try poaching a couple tomorrow in place of your bowl of cereal and a little bacon on the side from time to time won’t hurt either.
Ditch the diet yoghurt and go for the creamy stuff
Diet yoghurt is a disaster. It’s loaded with sugar and it doesn’t fill you up. Go for a full fat, unflavoured Greek or natural yoghurt. Add some fresh fruit if it’s not sweet enough for your palate.
Say no to skinny lattes and take the full fat option instead
Again, this is particularly important as we age as we must include full fat dairy over low fat dairy so we receive adequate amounts of the fat soluble vitamins A, D and K. Did you know you can still buy milk in the supermarket that has the cream on top? Look for the unhomogenised varieties; it’s the closest thing you will find to real milk straight off the farm.
Real food has fat. It was perfect until we humans started meddling with it. Bring some real food with fat back into your life, you will be better off as a result. Now, what indulgences have you missed that you might add include on your plate today?
Share your thoughts below.