Organic. Pastured/grass-fed. Non-GMO. Free Range. Wild caught... What matters?
Do you find yourself a little confused in the supermarket these days? So many labels - so much to think about. What is a mother to buy?
Relax. Most (~80%) of the battle against ill health is won simply by switching to a real-food-more-fat diet. So no, it does not have to be organic to be healthy for your family. Different mothers have different access to organic produce and different grocery budgets, so suit yourself.
If you do have room in your budget for higher-end food, here is a priority list, designed to give you the most health improvement for your grocery dollar:
- Pastured or grass-fed butter. (Kerrygold and Organic Valley Pastured Butter taste amazing!)
- Pastured or grass-fed milk, cheese, and cream.
- Grass-fed beef. (Note: Most of us are used to corn-fed meat, and some will find the grass-fed meat less appealing. In general, the flavor of grass-fed beef is great, but there is a textural difference and it cooks a little faster, so it can take some time to adjust. If you can find freshly ground grass-fed beef, this is a good place to start. The tenderness does not really matter in a hamburger, sloppy joe, bolognese sauce, etc. And ground beef is less expensive, too.)
- Wild-caught fish.
- Pastured eggs. (Organic eggs are the next best option.)
- Chicken, pork, and eggs raised without antibiotics.
- Organic produce, especially the 'dirty dozen' -- apples, strawberries, celery, grapes, peaches, spinach, sweet bell peppers, nectarines, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, snap peas, potatoes -- plus blueberries.
There are many reasons, beyond health, to shop consciously at the grocery store or farmers' market. Some mothers like to buy local. Some like to keep the treatment of animals top of mind. Some are most concerned about the environment. All of these factors play a role in the many decisions we make as we fill our carts!