Friday, April 24, 2009

Fight Back Fridays: The Daffodil Principle

Some time ago, a friend sent me a copy of The Daffodil Principle If you've never seen it, I've linked up to a version of it on YouTube -- and I'd encourage you to watch it.

It occurred to me when I was considering what to post for Fight Back Fridays that "The Daffodil Principle" really embodies our philosophies regarding food... eating... and fighting back against conventional nutrition.

Before you stop reading and chalk us up for the biggest saps you've ever met, I'm going to ask you to give it a chance. Think about it.

I haven't been Eating Consciously for my entire life.

Neither of us have -- in fact, it's probably only been in the past two or three years that we've really made the decision to make serious changes to the way we think about food & eating.

We also didn't change our eating habits in one fell swoop.
No -- making changes to our diet has been a series of baby steps. I think one of the first stages of our transition occurred when we became conscious of how many servings of fruits and vegetables we were getting in a day. When we decided to opt for more (and better) servings of veggies, we started eating more leafy greens, broccoli, and other crucifers. Then, we took a look at the quality of the grains we were ingesting. We switched to whole wheat pasta, brown rice, and started trying out alternative grains like quinoa, spelt, and millet. We started reading labels. I started reading books and articles.

We changed the oils we were consuming. We ditched nasty fats like canola and vegetable oils. We embraced extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, and red palm oil. We banned margerine from our refrigerator and welcomed back lard and bacon fat (from uncured, nitrate-free bacon).

We went BACK to eating butter and full-fat dairy. We started buying organic milk. And now we've switched (almost entirely) to non-homogenized milk.

We're still in process. It's a journey. And we approach it step-by-step, daffodil-by-daffodil. We know we won't change the way the world works in one day. Or even a lifetime. But, we persist -- thoughtfully -- and focus on the every day work of things. We've begun to really THINK when we put together a meal. What's in this meal? What's nourishing me? And when we make choices that are contrary to the wisdom we've acquired, we're doing so consciously (not unconsciously, as we did for many years).

These days, we're working on the sugar. We've all but abolished high fructose corn syrup from our diet, and we're working on getting rid of processed nastiness altogether. We're not perfect. We still eat some conventional manufactured sugars, and we still bow down to our Sweet Teeth every now and again, but we've started the switch to a higher concentration of natural sweeteners like maple syrup, raw honey, and sucanet.

We're moving forward. And it's a Beautiful thing.

Join us -- You can start by checking out all the great stuff at Food Renegades' Fight Back Friday Event.

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  1. For years, i sought a milkman. Last summer, to my great delight, our local paper ran an article about a farmer who had begun delivering milk and dairy products! I would have danced around the kitchen with glee if I didn't have 2 left feet, which would have caused me to be an aching, clumsy mass on the floor. Anyway, we now consume his non-homogenized, organic milk, and it's the best we've ever had. I've always run the "dinner contains 2 veggies, one of which must be green" program, and my kids grew up to think that's normal. And I find if I try to ignore my sweet tooth, then i just CRAVE junk food! good luck on your eat healthy program; I'm sure it gets easier. And I wish I had daffodils in my yard....

  2. "We're moving forward. And it's a Beautiful thing." - Well said.

  3. In baby steps is the only way to do it, otherwise it's impossible. I applaud you for your continued efforts.

  4. Hi you two! What a great way to wrap up my Friday. Yes, life is a journey and planting 50,000 flower bulbs takes patience. Just as you said about food -- one step at a time.

    Wonderful post -- thanks for directing me to the daffodil link. Aaaahhhh, beautiful! And thoughtful!


  5. It's good you shared this. We're all foodies, but it's important to be conscious of what and why you eat things. Great way to approach it!

  6. Wow what a great lesson that video teaches! You guys are awesome! I think if i would have seen that field of flowers in person and read that one woman had done that it would have brought tears to my eyes, happy tears. What an inspiration! Thank you for bringing this to us, I love your blog!

  7. so so so well said! I like that you point out that when you do make a choice to eat contrary- it's just that a CHOICE!!! That means you think- and when people think -- oh no, LOOK OUT!!! and uhhh, dessert will never ever ever be on my list of can not have!! Nasty sweeteners, yes. But pie, cake, brownies, pudding..NO. My idea of working on that is limiting it to once a week. You guys need to make some BURP! whole wheat pasta sometime...

  8. Hi! What a lovely post, thank you for sharing the youtube video and your personal take on it. I, too, think that nutritional modifications are needed and will look into it :)

  9. Beautiful. remember eating well is not about being perfect, it's about having a strong foundation.

  10. Well said!

    We are all on a journey, and we're all taking steps. This is a really encouraging post for people who are just starting on their own journeys, or who are intimidated by the idea of how far left they have togo!

    Thanks for joining Fight Back Fridays today.

    (AKA FoodRenegade)

  11. Thanks! An inspirational post that gives me hope, I know I've come far in changing my diet, but when I read blogs of others who are much farther along than I, I sometimes become discouraged. Thank you for this encouragement!

  12. I wish you both luck on this journey. Thank for sharing it with us.

  13. I love how much thought you put into what you eat . . . I think people tend to follow one particular mindset (owing to a diet or marketed lifestyle) rather than really *putting their own thought* into the food. I'm half-heartedly changing my habits, I just spent the last year learning how to moderate my eating (I think I have a low-grade overeating disorder) and now I'd like to start eating more healthfully.

    To that end, I'm now working on more veggies and eating local, and found that the latter will lead to the former by joining a CSA. I think it's a really huge step toward my ideal diet and look forward to feeling good in so many different ways at once. =)

  14. We're trying to be better at it as well. It's not always easy in a fast-lane world but the more you think about it the easier it becomes!

  15. That's really interesting. I'm interested in hearing more about your natural sweets. Think there's a way you can make pie healthy? I'm serious.

  16. Healthy pie -- well, that would be a great challenge, wouldn't it? :) Probably possible!

    We'll try to keep you informed about our battle with sugar. This is definitely an area for improvement around our house. I doubt we'll ever be 100% -- but we have lots of room for progress!

  17. Eating really is an evolutionary journey, isn't it? Some of us are lucky enough to be raised in conscious households, or homes rich with tradition; others are not. Either way, finding your way to a relationship with food is a personal and continuing transformation. Thanks for sharing your journey with us -- it's a lovely post.

  18. I feel different when I eat nourishing food. Admittedly, most of it is far from local/organic, etc., but it is homemade and healthy. It's far better to eat homemade chicken soup made from a supermarket chicken than to eat a fast food meal. Anyway, ever since I switched to a healthier, more thoughtful diet, I noticed that I've had fewer colds.

  19. Wow...sooo nice. Great video with a great message! Thanks so much for posting - very inspirational!

  20. I understand what you mean. I've been in process of improving my diet for years. I'm really working in more veggies than ever. I'm also trying hard to eliminate processed foods except for the occasional treat. I will admit to not being totally anti-sugar. I don't think a few sweets hurt us. What really matters the most is spending more time in your own kitchen. The more I do my own cooking and control what goes on my plate, the better I feel.


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