*Previously published as Once Upon a Cook - Food Wisdom, Better Living (February 2019)
This version has been updated, retitled and reprinted to reflect the key and emerging issues we are facing for our food, our health and our planet.
Look around - what a mess!
How many of us are struggling to increase our energy or to cope with, or heal from chronically poor health? How many of us are struggling to achieve and maintain a healthy weight - should we go high fat/low fat/no fat? Or high carb/low carb/no carbs?
How many of us have been seduced by the promise of the latest ‘headline' diet – the one to cure all ills? How would it feel to be full of energy instead of having to think about your health every day? What if you could find better health by changing the foods you eat?
We’ve recently heard a LOT about how going plant-based and even 100% vegan is going to be much better for us and much better for the planet - but what is the actual evidence for this? What if you discovered truths about food that made you want to change the way you eat - for your health and for our planet.
The scientific evidence is clearly showing that the food we’ve been eating and the way we’ve been growing, raising, producing, cooking and sourcing it has been utterly destructive at every level. And it’s just not sustainable.
Real food IS the solution
The science is telling us that real food, not fad diets… or rhetoric… or myths offers us the solution; it’s showing us that our health starts with real, whole, home-cooked foods. But even as more and more of us are becoming sicker than ever before - we all know someone with diabetes; with obesity; with a chronic, or cardiovascular disease; with a degenerative, digestive or autoimmune disorder, with cancer - fewer and fewer of us are cooking and eating real food at home.
Our food is much, much more than filling fuel for our body - it's information. Real, whole ingredients carry health critical information that turns our genes on and off and tells our cells how and when to work.
But the ultra-processed, chemically damaged, pseudo-substances that we’ve all come to call ‘food' carry misinformation which our body can't recognise and it responds with inflammation that harms our body’s digestive and immune system. Garbage in, garbage out: enter chronic and autoimmune disease.
And what we do to ourselves, we do to our planet - so welcome to industrial farming and food systems which have broken not only our health but are destroying our planet.
If, like thousands of others, you’re confused, anxious, suspicious, at a loss as to what to eat, worried about how your food is produced and how this impacts the planet, then read The Real Food Solution.
Why 'THE REAL FOOD SOLUTION'?
Things in food, farming and health have moved so fast in the last 12 months that I’ve updated the content of Once Upon a Cook - Food Wisdom, Better Living to reflect the key issues we are facing for our food, our health and our planet. Within the pages of The Real Food Solution I’ve once again delved deep into the science to find and present the evidence to set the record straight on food and to offer a solution.
You'll discover the deep nutrition of meat, eggs, butter, cheese and milk from grass-fed animals; bone and mineral broths; organic fruit and vegetables; wild-caught seafood; cultured and fermented foods; herbs and spices. These traditional foods kept generations of our ancestors free from the chronic diseases which plague us today and helped me to reverse a progressive autoimmune disorder. They can do the same for you.
The Real Food Solution truly is a treasury of food wisdom for more energy, vitality and better health for people and planet. With hundreds of pages of wisdom and evidence-based references and over 40 delicious recipes, culinary tips and techniques, it will quickly become your go-to resource.
I want you to own it - because don't we owe it to ourselves and our planet to know better and to do much better?
“I would like to thank Izabella Natrins for writing this book. It summarises all of the most important issues about food in our modern world, starting from the health of the soil, farming practises to food processing and cooking. There is nothing more powerful in its effect on human health than the food we eat.. This book gives the reader valuable knowledge on how to make their food their medicine!”
Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride
Author of Put Your Heart in Your Mouth & Vegetarianism Explained
“A terribly useful book that gives a clear summary/analysis of all the contemporary food dilemmas.”
UK investigative food journalist & commentator
Author of Swallow This: Serving Up the Food Industry’s Darkest Secrets &
Winner of the Food Writers Guild Award 2018
"I don't think I've read such a thorough book on health and nutrition. It really does cover every aspect of food: from soil health, busting myths about meat, fats, salt and dairy, microbes of the gut , pesticides and organic farming, traditional foods and many recipies...and so much more. The genius of her writing style is that is it so clear and concise, its a quick easy reference dictionary about all things food and health. Izabella's approach is gentle yet totally persuasive and you cannot come away from this book without making hugely positive changes to your lifestyle."
Pharmacist, Founder of Bloom and Holistic Health & Movement Coach
"This is a brilliant well written book... EVERY HOME should have one... This book is REAL easy to understand and will change the way you SHOP and eat... This is NOT a diet book but it enables you to understand what you should be eating and WHY."
"As a single 60-something woman, this book has really opened my eyes and made me completely rethink my diet. I lived on ready meals, but since reading this book I have switched to high quality meat, organic produce and now read all labels. I have found local farm shops and butchers and have a new awareness about the most basic things we eat like bread, milk and eggs. This book is a must for anyone who wants to become a more informed consumer and who wants to make better choices and learn how food cooked by our parents and grandparents was really good for us; real unprocessed food. When we understand how our body is a finely tuned machine that needs the right nutrition to keep it running at optimum health, the results can be life changing."
Anne M Thorn
I dedicate this book* to real food and to supporting the British Holistic Medical Association’s Real Food Campaign UK.
The Real Food Campaign is a health-led collaboration of doctors, health practitioners, educators, farmers, growers, food producers and suppliers who want to join the dots between our food quality, our health and the sustainability of our food systems and our planet.
There is an urgent need for people to understand the links between the food we eat, how it has been raised, grown, produced, prepared and cooked and our own health. We need to understand why and how our food and farming systems must recalibrate to regenerate and support healthy people and a healthy, sustainable planet.
The Campaign’s is working across all parts of the farming, food and health sectors to inform and empower citizens, communities and health providers to recognise that food IS medicine and to equip people to make real food choices for better health.
The Real Food Credo:
- Real food is nutrient-dense and delicious – using a variety of whole ingredients, cooked from scratch as often as possible
- Real food should be grown and produced in ways that support health – free from harmful chemicals and additives
- Real food can nurture community – sharing and connecting with family, friends, local economies and re-connecting with nature
- Real food supports and restores – our soils, our oceans and our natural environment
- Real food is about respect – for plants, for animals, for nature and for the farmers, growers and cooks that feed us
- Real food can heal our bodies, our minds and our society
- Real food is our birth-right and should be affordable and accessible to ALL
*The views expressed in The Real Food Solution are entirely my own