Something really cool has started happening in my family: We’re planning potlucks in terms of healthy eating. Who’s bringing the salad? Can the dressing be on the side? How about two options: one creamy and one olive-oil based? How about a nice fruit salad?
Now, mind you, my family has always (luckily) been good about bringing home-cooked meals to family gatherings, so, generally speaking, we’ve been sharing whole, real foods. But the newest trend has us paying attention to toppings and options that are colorful, as well as seeking organic foods and high-quality meats.
Recently, we enjoyed wild-caught salmon and halibut that my father-in-law caught on a fishing trip in Alaska. We grilled it and served it with roasted corn and a big salad I mixed together on the fly. Everything was amazing! As we dined, few words were spoken other than “so good” and “wow.”
It was only a few years ago that I was disconnected to my food. It came in a box or from a drive-through window. And I don’t think the origin of my meal would have influenced me on whether to put the food in my mouth or in the trash. If it smelled familiar, I’d eat it — residual pesticides, hormone-filled meats and all.
As I’ve cleaned up my choices, I’ve felt worlds better. I’m including more variety, yes, but knowing more about where my food came from and how it was raised gives me more satisfaction, too. I always claimed to love food, but I wasn’t loving food, per se — I was loving corn syrup and sugar and refined flours and trans fats and chemical additives and preservatives. Loving real food means appreciating it in its natural state, learning new cooking methods, and sharing it with friends and family. It’s a truth that I’m happy to have adopted, and one I’m so pleased to find my family supporting.