Monday, July 30, 2012

Food Choices

My recent post on Abby’s allergies got me thinking about how we eat. When we had the girls we made some minor modifications to the way we eat and the way we feed the girls. I made almost all of their baby food myself and we made it all organic. We started eating more organic foods ourselves (dairy, some meats and the dirty dozen produce). When we discovered that Abby was severely allergic to milk, eggs and blueberries (anaphylaxis as well as blisters when she has external exposure) we quickly learned that a lot of our food choices would change.

Gone were the days of going out to eat easily or cooking ready-made meals. In the beginning of her allergies I often made separate meals. One that was dairy and egg free for Abby (and sometimes Grace) and one for Brian and I. As she got older we realized that this was not a long term solution. Having separate meals was a lot of work but it also wasn’t fair to Abby. Why should she have to have something different than the rest of the family.

So I started doing my research. We started making daily discoveries. We found vegan butter and cheese. We stumbled upon egg replacer and vegan desserts at Whole Foods. While absent mindedly reading the label on a pack of oreo’s (reading labels is something I have started to do religiously) I found that they were vegan. The more I read, asked questions and researched the more foods I discovered were vegan or could be made vegan. I learned to bake and cook vegan or at least milk and egg free.

It was not an easy process and A LOT of cooking mishaps came up. There was a wonderful side effect. We started eating healthier… a lot healthier. Brian and I were eating about 80% organic without even realizing. We started getting into the habit of eating less proteins from meat and more front plant sources. We cut out most junk food. Our diet was more local and we even started growing a lot of our own veggies in the summer. I learned to can and pressure can and one day we woke up and realize we had a fantastically healthy diet.

I wish I could sit here and say it’s easy but that would be a lie. Eating healthy takes effort, and money. Fresh food is expensive. A box of mac and cheese costs about a dollar while making vegan mac is at least double. We don’t really mind. We budget to accommodate for the food choices we make. And we DO eat junk sometimes. We go to McDonald’s occasionally. It isn’t my first choice but I feel like the kids need to eat like kids sometimes.

Posted by Kristen Fescoe

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