I developed chronic ailments, nearly destroyed my liver, and digestive tract. I had migraines, skin rashes, excruciating pain, and debilitating fatigue.
One day, in my early thirties, I attended a seminar on regression hypnosis. Toward the end, the facilitator announced that he wanted to talk to us about something else—healthy eating. What this had to do with regression hypnosis, I still don't know, but it was the beginning of a healing miracle for me.
He talked about the consequences of ignoring our body's need for good, nourishing food. He described my symptoms exactly. BOING!!!! I finally knew what was causing my illness—junk food and a massive sugar addiction.
I went home and emptied my cupboards of anything that was less than what I believed to be real food. I started shopping at the local health mega-market, researched places to find real foods, including bacon, ham. dairy, and poultry—no hormones, additives or artificial anything. I sought out real food and found it, started an organic vegetable garden, and read everything I could get my hands on about the benefits of eating real food.
WHOA! you say. "I'm not ready for a tofu and brown rice diet." Well neither am I. I refuse to buy into the myth that good, healthy eating means bland and tasteless. Since my mother taught me to cook, I knew I could change my evil ways. I took cooking courses and began using my noggin to figure out how to make my favorite goodies without sacrificing health.
I learned to make low or no sugar deserts that you can't tell from those with high sugar, except that they are way better. I learned how to use good ingredients instead of cheap, additve-laden junk. I like my comfort foods. I won't give up my cheesecake.
Now I am healthier now than I have ever been. But, I'm human and sometimes eat the wrong foods out of convenience or social pressure. You know, when your best friend proudly brings box-made brownies to an event. You feel like you have to eat them. Hmmmm. If I indulge too much, my body slaps me upside the head so I pay attention and get back to real food, which I really like better anyway.
So here we are. I offer you the best of the best of REAL FOOD. From bread to pie to pot roast and beyond. You can make and eat REAL FOOD and not sacrifice your favorite comfort foods.
Bon Appetite. Cook, Eat, Enjoy!
Real Food with Anita Burns
Welcome to Real Food Cooking with Anita Burns
My Story . . .
In my twenties I thought there were three food groups: sweet, salty, and greasy. Oh, and a fourth group, intoxicating. So, if I could get a french fries coated in sugar and dipped in vodka, I would have been in heaven.
I was mostly raised in a baloney and white bread atmosphere. My mother was a wonderful cook, but our snowy white bread came sliced and in a wrapper that sported bright, colorful balloons. Our cheese was pre-sliced, orange, and as shiny as vinyl.
Dinners were usually cooked at home. No one went out to eat in those days unless it was a special occasion. Mom's specialties were chicken-fried steak, fried chicken, tamale pie, meat loaf, and spaghetti with meat balls. We also loved our potatoes—fried, mashed, and baked. All in all, pretty good in comparison to commercial food, even it it did contain some "convenience" ingredients.
Alas, somewhere along the way, I discovered TV dinners, boxed mac-n-cheese, canned vienna sausages, and the golden arches burgers. It was all downhill from there. I never lost an interest in real food, it was just no longer the hub of my food repertoire.
Too much sugar, fat, and grease was now accompanied by an increasing volume of preservatives, artificial colors, flavorings, texturizers, and WTF additives. I was headed for disaster.
What is REAL FOOD?
Ask anyone and you will get a different answer. I can only address what I think of as REAL FOOD.
Real food tastes great, satisfies a need for deep, complex flavors, is memorable, and comforting. Real food is made without chemical preservatives, additives, artificial coloring, texturizers, fillers, fake anything, or WTF ingredients that are unpronouncable. They definitely are NOT made with ingredients that are genetically modified (GMO), or irradiated. This could include anything from fried chicken to banana cream pie. It is all in how it is made. Buy and eat organic whenever possible. and be warned, as of yet, in the United States, GMO foods do not have to be labeled as such. If it doesn't say "organic" on the packaging, it probably isn't.
Real food is a party in your mouth. It nourishes your body and emotions. Real Food is Damned Good!