Monday, May 21, 2012

Fast Food? Or "Instant Food"?

No fast food! This seems to be a no-brainer, right?  Unless you have been living under a rock you have to know that food prepared in typical fast food restaurants is of some of the lowest quality of nutrition, not to mention highest in calories....bad calories...oh and tons of salt.  So stop eating it.  Just stop.  It is no longer an option.  Besides horrible quality foods, the most important reason to stop is to establish better habits of feeding your beautiful glorious heart, and every cell in your living and breathing miracle you call your body!  Quit killing it, or at the very least pissing it off!

What, what you say?  You don't eat fast food?  Have you ever opened a package of food, heated it up and eaten it.  Have you ever opened a can of food, heated it up and eaten it? Have you ever opened a box of food, stuck your hand in it, and eaten the food inside?  These foods are what I consider instant foods.  Here is a portion of a blog post I wrote  over 5 years ago titled "Instant Food".

 FEBRUARY 15, 2007

Instant Food

It occured to me recently that most people don't want Fast Food, they want "Instant Food". What is instant food? It's food that you don't have to do anything to, except to pay for it, open a package, or heat it up.

My older son came home from work one evening and did his usual complaining of "there's nothing to eat in the house". What he meant was there was nothing cooked, portioned, plated and waiting in the fridge for him. I knew there was plenty of food to prepare.  So I offered to put something together quickly for him, which I did, and he conceded that it was good, but it took too long! I couldn't believe what I was hearing, and that's when I realized that people in this country want their food instantly, and that's a problem. It maybe the problem.

I mentioned in an earlier post that it doesn't seem to be enough for us not to have to grow or kill our own food, but many of us don't even want to prepare it or, God forbid, cook it. We are spoiled rotton, maybe the term should be "spoiled fat". Is it any wonder why this country is having obesity problems?

Even when people decide to diet they look for "easy to open diet food" like energy, power and granola bars, string cheese, high sugar yogurts, bagels, rice cakes, Lean Cuisines, bananas, etc.. No one ever grabs an apple! (or a couple of prunes w/ PNB!).

A friend of mine recently stated proudly that her kids have never had "instant food". She of course was talking about fast food. I quickly pointed out to her that if her kids have ever eaten a hotdog, they have indeed had instant food! Kids today have hotdogs, bologna, "deli meats", Cheerios, wrapped american cheese, crackers, Cheetos, Cheezits, fruit roll-ups, high sugar juice boxes (yes, even orange juice). And that's the "healthier" stuff. No one wants to admit to the Hostess cupcakes, fast food (almost everyday for some kids ), pizza, soda etc.. And I had been as guilty as anyone, so I'm not throwing stones!

What I have learned about cooking and preparing my own food for over 2 years now has been completely accidental! I just wanted to lose some weight. And it made sense to me that eating fresh food, controling ingredients and portions would be the best way to do that. What was accidental was how much healthier I am. Not just my weight, but how I feel. Eating what I call "live food" makes you feel alive.

The other accident was how good I've become at cooking and preparing food. Good, fresh food. And fast! Practice, practice, practice. The good thing about practicing cooking is that you get to eat afterwards! I'm always encouraging my friends to cook more of their own food. I've also offered to show many of them how I do it. And I will continue to encourage everyone to consider eating better. Even if that means buying quality ready-made food.

People will wait 30-60 minutes for a pizza to be delivered. They will wait up to 2 hours at popular busy restauants. The time they take driving to, waiting at, and spend money on food that is over-processed, and over-flavored is ridiculous.

People are always amazed at the fact that I never eat "out". I've only eaten out maybe 4 times in over 2 years, and that's because I was out of town or some other reason out of my control.

My food is no secret. Just look at my food journal and you'll see that my favorite "instant foods" are; apples, grapes, prunes, nuts. But I'm not claiming to be perfect, cookies and ice cream are still on the list too. What are yours? And how can you start to change and make better choices, if you need to, for your family and yourself?

So I just wanted to reiterate that what's important is establishing the habit of feeding yourself, which includes planning!  Back in the day, and I mean back in the day, before refrigeration, before grocery stores do you think you didn't have to plan where the hell your food is coming from?  Forget what your actual diet was...but let me see, your actual diet was anything you could find to eat!

You and your family had these options.  Growing and/or harvesting plants, and that's a seasonal job.  Raising animals, and then yep, killing them.  Inventing ways of preparing food for long term storage, like curing and pickling.  All of this took thought and planning or you would die, or at least go hungry.

And that's exactly what is happening now. Without thought and planning people have come to rely on someone else to feed them, and it's killing us.  Someone else whose bottom line is $$, not your health. But don't blame them if you yourself don't even care!  Take responsibility, it's on you!

Fast food? Cross it off the list.


Andrea Reyna said...

This is excellent mental prep for me. Thursday night (after training!) We're off to the land of drive-thru for several days and I'm nervous about my ability to protect what I've lost. My mantra is going to have to remind me that good food makes me feel good and the rubbish leaves me feeling worse then a massive hangover.

Beth said...

Perfect timing and important reminder for me! Thank you, Tracy!

Tracy Reifkind said...


No drive-thrus! Rule #1, so there is no choice.

Tracy Reifkind said...


Good! You are so much better than this anyway, and you know BOTH know it (Andrea Reyna!)

Andrea Reyna said...

I totally know it and won't even make it an option.