Trying To Be Healthier

Last week we finally found out what was wrong with my daughter. She has asthma. After about six months of chronic, severe coughing we figured it out. I thought that is was probably asthma all along because of a strong family history, but it was a hard case to detect. She was not having the common symptoms. We have been trying to figure out if she had food allergies for several months. We have tracked what she ate, and we could never figure out what it was. After a whole bunch of allergy testing, we found out she really has no allergies. Although I am glad she does not have allergies, it makes the asthma a little harder to deal with. If it was allergies, you take away what she is allergic to. I know chemicals smells and such bother her, so I am limiting what I use for cleaners, soaps, and lotions. But besides that she may just have to take medicines and live with it. No fun!

This means we now have three in the house with asthma: my son, my daughter, and myself. So, I am really going to try and improve the way we eat. I think we need some immune boosting right now. If for no other reason than to help my daughter’s system recover from being on all the medicines. I figure we eat healthier than most Americans, because I cook most of our meals. We do not eat a lot of processed food, but we do eat some. I need to get better at fixing healthier meals though, more whole grains and fruits and vegetables. But, more whole grains is what I really need to focus on.

The problem is that I really like to bake, and baking with whole wheat just is not the same. I love to make all different kinds of cookies and cakes, cinnamon rolls and pies, muffins and breads. I could go on and on. This is going to be hard on me. Maybe I will have to check into getting a wheat grinder. Maybe I would be happier with whole wheat if it was fresh. I think I may start with just focusing on less processed things in the dessert area. Also, my husband does not like brown rice or whole wheat pasta. I have tried them both. He really would prefer I did not cook them. So that is another difficulty.

I need to try and figure out how to incorporate more whole grains, and not have my family upset at me. I know introducing them slowly helps, but I still think it will be hard.

I have several King Arthur cookbooks, and I also have the Bob’s Red Mill one. I am looking though for other cookbooks that might have useful information it them.

I know a lot of people like the Nourishing Traditions Book. I checked it out from my library and really was not impressed. First of all, I thought it was a little too New Age for me. I just had a hard time getting passed that. I also was not impressed that most of the medical facts, data, studies, etc. were well over fifty years old, some older then that. I know that doesn’t bother a lot of people. But my husband is in the medical field, and I like current relevant facts and studies to back up what they are saying. Medicine has changed a lot in the last hundred years, even in the last twenty years. Some things are for the worse, like that we are very dependent upon medicine that healthy eating or weight loss would improve. But, we know of far more conditions now then we ever did before and can diagnose others far better, and we need to take that into consideration.

For example, in the book they talk about heart problems, I DO agree we have a lot more heart conditions now because of poor diet, obesity, etc. But they based their views on really old studies. Yes, more people are diagnosed in 2008 with heart condition because we can now diagnose heart conditions better. One hundred years ago they could not detect the things they do now. There was no such thing as a angiogram. So of course we now diagnose more heart problems, and we detect more of them early on. A lot of people died one hundred years ago of unknown conditions or “old age.” How many of those could have been heart related, and they just did not know it? Like I said, I agree we have a lot more heart problems today due to diet and weight issues. I agreed with them on that, but they did not back it up with relevant data.

This is just an example of where I was turned off by this book. The studies used to back up what they believed were really outdated. If they had used current data, studies, and statistics I would have been fine with it. But the data they used seemed really irrelevant because things have changed so much. Am I being too picky? If you have read it, what do you think about those things? Maybe I should try to read the rest of it, before I give up on it fully.

Does anyone have any suggestions about healthier cooking? Do you have any book or cookbook recommendations? Any suggestions would be appreciated. If you can’t tell by my Nourishing Traditions paragraphs, I am kind of overwhelmed with the stuff out there, and sorting through it all is difficult. It seems like so much of it is very anti-current medicine. I am very grateful for current medicine, and the things it has done to save the lives of myself and people I love. I want to find a balance between the two and that does not seem to be out there.

Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. A year ago next month, I went to a homeschool conference where I ended up sitting in on a Bread Beckers workshop. I was not even considering grinding my own wheat when I entered the room, and actually had not even planned on going to that workshop. While listening to Sue Becker, I realized that fresh ground wheat was what my family needed! There are SO many health benefits. I believe this is the way God planned bread to be eaten. Check out their website www Bread Beckers dot com (close up the spaces, etc.). My husband was not a bread eater prior to this transition. I had to “sell” him on it. I bought some grain and had a friend with a mill grind it for me. The first thing I made was muffins (because they were easy) but they also happen to be one my of my husband’s least favorite breads. He ate one and then asked for another! The difference in fresh ground wheat and store bought wheat flour is like night and day! I have not bought one loaf of bread since June of last year. I make all our bread now! The pancakes are out of this world. I play around with different grains now, and still have a lot to learn. As a person who also likes to bake, I believe you would have fun with this. I also believe that your family will adapt and actually learn to like it better in most bread products. I’ve posted some of bread items on my blog (you may have to go back to June or July 2007 to see most of them). My whole family is totally sold on this and can’t imagine going back to store bought bread! Oh, on the BB website, you can order a free cd of Sue Becker telling about the health benefits. I also purchased their Bread Beckers Recipe Collection and use it all the time.

    Good luck in your search. I pray that you find what works for your family, as I did for mine!

  2. Michele says:

    Hi, Lynn,
    You might want to read Michal Pollan’s new book “In Defense of Food.” He discusses a lot of the research mentioned in Nourishing Traditions, but from a more recent viewpoint (published in 2008!).

    For recipes, I think Sue Gregg is a great place to start, if you don’t like Nourishing Traditions. (I do really like the NT recipes, though.)

    Thanks for stopping by my blog!
    Michele :)

  3. Anonymous says:

    can you try baking with just a little whole wheat flour? For example, if a recipe calls for a cup, try half or a quarter cup of whole wheat mixed with the white – every little bit helps, right? same with pasta – if I mix ww and regular in mac and cheese, my son doesn’t even notice

  4. I think I am going to try just use a little whole wheat here and there. Maybe if I cook with a little bit now they will adjust better and I can add more later on.

  5. I know I am commenting very late on this, but I just had to mention that you might be interested in reading the book Eat to Live by Joel Fuhrman. The basic concept he promotes is the idea of nutrient density…getting the most nutrients per calorie. Definitely worth reading!

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