When it comes to food, we tend to love the convenience and enjoyment we get from making the purchase and indulging. Grocery stores are always close by, along with fast food, restaurants, and all the coffee you could drink. It’s become second nature for us to run into a store for a quick snack or soda, causing us to unconsciously spend more money on products we don’t necessarily need.
Recently I realized the number of food outlets within my reach, and how easy and cheap it was to buy food from these places without lifting a single finger in the process of making it. Every corner lies a McDonald’s, Starbucks, convenience store with aisles of junk food and snacks, and no work for the consumer needed.
Growing up, my family relied on the convenience of fast food. Going out to eat in between soccer and dance practice, then rushing home to complete piles of homework that can never be accomplished on an empty stomach, made the drive through a regular part of the week.
As I became older I began to become more aware of the food I’m allowing into my body and became more health conscious. I made friends with local growers and farmers, and became a regular in organic food markets. I suddenly noticed the enjoyment in growing my own vegetables, and seeing how hard work and patience can pay off and be more rewarding than having a large fry at the end of a busy day.
When I began to surround myself with the kinds of people who understand the importance of food as fuel, I decided to make the switch to becoming “food aware.” I slowly limited the amount of meat I ate and increased the numbers of vegetables and fruits I consumed that are in season and organically grown.
I don’t want this post to seem as if I am trying to persuade everyone to become vegetarians, pescetarians, or even fruitarians, that not what’s important to me. What I want this message to be is that food should better yourself and have lasting positive effects on your mind and body. Understanding where your food is coming from, how it’s grown and raised, where it is produced and manufactured and by whom, and by what means, is something I think everyone should find interest in.
I find joy in raising and growing the foods that I eat. These experiences have shifted my views on my diet, and has lead me down a healthier path. Who knew gardening, farming, learning, and sharing could be something so rewarding?