3 simple food rules

I was recently making copies of a recipe to share and came upon Alice Waters’ fundamental guidelines from The Art of Simple Food:

"Eat locally and sustainably
Eat seasonally
Shop at Farmer’s Markets
Plant a garden
Conserve, compost and recycle
Cook simply
Cook together
Eat together
Remember food is precious"

Seeing them again got me thinking that when we talk about nutrition the conversation can often get a bit confusing and, at times, contradictory. Unfortunately, I think we’ve even become scared of our food and are quick to label items as good vs bad. And while I strongly believe that clinical nutrition is a valuable treatment strategy, I can also understand that it is a bit crazy making to make sense of all the nutrition advice that bombards us. So, I wanted to share my tried and true food rules (which include Waters' guidelines).

What makes them special is that they are useful in the long term and allow for variations in dietary needs based on my health and physical activity, celebrations and when food choices are beyond ideal. 

Eat Real Food: I think this sums up a whole-food based lifestyle. If it’s real, meaning it has no high fructose corn syrup or ingredients I can’t pronounce, then I’m going to eat it or at least, try it.

Eat seasonally: Eating tomatoes when they are in season, for example, means that we get to enjoy them at the prime in terms of taste and nutritional value. And each season there is produce that is worth waiting for! I am currently dreaming of rhubarb come spring and asparagus.

Bless your food and leave guilt at the door: Sometimes it's impossible to eat the “perfect” meal. Either we are guests at someone's home or on a trip and the least worst option is airport food. If it isn’t something you are truly allergic/sensitive to, bless it, give thanks, and try to enjoy each bite mindfully. The same goes for the piece of cake or croissant. Food does not digest well mixed with guilt. Be present and it will nourish you without creating harm.

There you have it. My three fundamental thoughts on food. Of course, specific dietary advice should always be discussed with a qualified health practitioner, but I think these guidelines are quite powerful and have really shifted my relationship with food to one of celebration and nourishment.

Do you have any guidelines you find helpful? I'd love to hear your thoughts. Leave a comment below! 

Wishing you many happy meals!