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Rule 63 – Cook.

“In theory,” says Pollan, “it should make little difference to your health whether you cook for yourself or let someone else do the work. But unless you can afford to hire a private chef to prepare meals exactly to your specifications, letting other people cook for you means losing control over your eating life, the portions as much as the ingredients. Cooking for yourself is the only sure way to take back control of your diet from the food scientists and food processors, and to guarantee you’re eating real food and not edible foodlike substances, with their unhealthy oils, high-fructose corn syrup, and surfeit of salt.” Popular chain restaurants are especially guilty of serving up 2-3 times your daily intake of salt per meal. Wow! ABC News carried a story on this very issue just last night.

“Not surprisingly,” Pollan concludes, “the decline in home cooking closely parallels the rise in obesity, and research suggests that people who cook are more likely to eat a more healthful diet” (137).

And that’s just it – I want that “healthful diet.” Even setting obesity aside, I want food that nourishes my biological systems, that provides my heart, my kidneys, my liver, my eyes, my brain with the vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants, and phytonutrients they require.
So happy gardening, happy cooking, and happy healthy bodies! I don’t know about you, but I can easily remember the days when eating out was only for special occasions!

The tips are courtesy of Michael Pollan’s book Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual. New York: Penguin, 2009.

Happy, Healthy Eating!

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