What is real food and real farming? A food and farming system respectful of human dignity and health, animal welfare, food sovereignty, social justice and environmental sustainability. A system that nourishes and sustains producers, consumers, communities and the ecologies that nourish and sustain production.
Real food is essential to good human health. Real farming is the source of real food. In the industrialised world, many have stopped thinking about this question, but really: Is anything more important that what we put, daily, into our bodies?
What issues are addressed by “real food and farming”? Disease associated with poor nutrition; loss of nutritional wisdom; intensive farming practices, denuding of topsoil, widespread use of chemical pesticides, exploitation of livestock, loss of diversity of flora, fauna, loss of social, economic, cultural diversity in rural sector, ecological destruction, unsustainability, erosion, flooding; exploitation of economically-poor farmers by multinationals, etc.
When Britain leaves the EU, farmers will no longer receive direct payments from Brussels, and the UK governments will have to make their own policy on subsidies. Some people will see this as an opportunity to reduce costs, but the Sustainable Food Trust’s new report The Hidden Cost of UK Food suggests that cutting subsidies might be a false economy.
The report shows that agricultural subsidies make up a comparatively small proportion of the total costs of UK food – just 2.5p for every pound spent on what we eat. That’s because there are huge hidden costs in the food system, such as the health care bill caused by poor diets, and the environmental impacts of intensive farming. Farm subsidies, meanwhile, will be pivotal in shifting our food system towards more sustainable practices, saving us money in the long run.
The contemporary economic system has broken the vital relationship between Land, Food and People. There is a crucial need to renew the system that has produced this breakdown.
“Brexit” represents a propitious historical moment to respond decisively to a range of critical issues relating to the disproportionate empowerment of corporations, landowners and shareholders, at the cost of national health, the concerns of systemic stakeholders and the expectations of land-workers, in particular. Continue reading “A New Economic Framework”→
Diet Doctor is a relatively new resource, appearing in the current format in the last year, after starting out in Sweden, in 2011. It’s entered the sphere of dietary nutrition at what I believe is a critical moment for the world. Seriously:
Something is badly wrong. While the prosperity of the world has never been higher, people are suffering. More and more people – the majority in the Western world – are obese or overweight, and a large proportion are on prescription drugs every day for the rest of their lives. Every year new people add to the sad statistics. As we get ever richer as a society our health appears to decline. Why is this?
With that backdrop, it’s clear: there’s a crucial need for accessible, accurate, reliable nutritional dietary information to be delivered through the medium of the internet—the “printing press” of the twenty-first century.
Professor Tim Noakes is a South African Professor of Exercise and Sports Science at the University of Cape Town. As qualified as it’s possible to be from a scientific point of view, he has also participated in over 70 marathons and authored Lore of Running, Challenging Beliefs and Waterlogged. Since moving into the sphere of dietary nutrition, Professor Noakes
…has dedicated his life to opening people’s eyes to the myth of low-fat eating and the nutritional and environmental crisis it has now left us in.
Most of what I learned from the highly-qualified, informed, committed and seemingly indefatigable, Chicago born-and-bred Dr Mercola came via his website, Mercola.com—with 25 million monthly visitors, “The World’s #1 Natural Health Website” —and its email newsletter.
After digesting Dr Mercola’s daily emails for the best part of a year or more, I came to recognise and understand the basic underlying health and wellness principles that he espouses. They supported, enhanced and considerably expanded upon what I had already learnt from The Primal Blueprint and Nutritious Traditions.
Dr Mercola’s dietary, nutrition and lifestyle principles can be accessed online, as a nutrition plan, but probably more succinctly and accessibly, via the book, Effortless Healing, which presents them as:
9 Simple Ways to Sidestep Illness, Shed Excess Weight and Help Your Body Fix Itself.
We refer to this as our “Yellow Food Bible.” Sally Fallon is President of the Weston A Price Foundation. Weston Price was a dentist who travelled the world and observed traditional, indigenous groups and their diets:
“Whilst the diets of these peoples differed in many particulars…(they all) ate fats, meats, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds and whole grains in the whole, unrefined state…(and) some raw foods… Almost every member…enjoyed superb health…free of chronic disease, dental decay and mental illness; they were strong, sturdy and attractive; and they produced healthy children with ease, generation after generation.”
This is where I began my LCHF journey. I gave it a try because it came highly recommended by readers. I thought at the time:
Ok, but why go so over-the-top with the front cover claims? “Effortless weight loss, vibrant health & boundless energy” it claimed. Tone it down a bit, I thought!
Then I tried it. Wow. Practically everything Mark Sisson claims began to happen. More energy. Less irritation and indigestion. Weight began to reduce, without any calorie-counting. People began asking me what I’d done to produce the changes they could see in me. I was so thrilled with the results that I bought several copies as gifts, for family members and friends. Continue reading “Primal Blueprint — Mark Sisson”→
A friend wrote to me, having encountered my introduction to real food and farming and how beneficial I’d found it to be. They said:
I find this genuinely inspiring…if I wanted to start moving towards this kind of eating, can you point me to any good resources for a simple start, please?
In response, over the course of the next five days, I’ll provide an introduction to four books and one website, each of which I have researched and referenced personally, to some degree or other, in my own nutritional and lifestyle transformation. All of these resources are aimed squarely at the popular market, whilst presenting advise based on the latest scientific understanding of nutrition and physiology. They are: Continue reading “‘Real Food’ Resources”→
Through the River: Understanding Assumptions About Truth — Hirst, Hirst, and Hiebert 2009—200pp.
Jon and Mindy Hirst thoughtfully present teachings absorbed by the authors from a book by Dr Paul Hiebert (1999), using a visual analogy, based upon three communities of people living in different ways around River Town. Each community lives by and depicts a particular epistemology—a ‘truth lens’—either positivism, instrumentalism and critical realism, respectively.