I’m excited to announce something I’ve never done before, and I think you’re gonna love it! I’ve created a free automated “100 Days of Real Food” Mini-Pledge Program that – starting in January – will email you a new challenge every single week until you (and your family) have completely cut out processed food. Now these are “mini” pledges because each email will present you with a completely doable and realistic challenge to change just one aspect of your diet the following week. Plus, all the resources you’ll need to succeed will be included and, let’s not forget, each mini-pledge only lasts a mere 7 days. Anyone can try something new for a week, right?
1/15/15 update: This program was closed to new participants on January 15th, 2015 (until next year). However, you can still access the basic info on my 100 Days of Mini-Pledges page, which is what this program was based on. You may also subscribe to our email newsletter to be notified when we open the program again.
We love Lisa and her dedication to real food but also how she makes it real for parents and families to eat this way, which is is why we couldn’t be more excited to guest post for her!
Amy and I are moms and dietitians who love providing parents with fresh recipes and healthy strategies focusing on teaching children to eat more fruits and veggies. We try to make real food creative and fun in order to help growing children develop healthy habits for life. Because we both have children of all ages, we are feeding babies, dealing with picky toddlers, and also attempting to feed busy teens on the go! We believe that feeding your children lots of fruits and veggies is not only possible but can be fun in the process!
Summer is a great time to experiment with different fruits and veggies because there are so many in season. They are great to have by themselves as a snack, but sometimes it is fun to add a little of this or a little of that and come up with a yummy fruit or veggie creation.
5 of our Favorite Summer Snacks
(that are super easy to make and your kids are sure to love)
1Creamy Lemon Dip
We love to dip! Sometimes kids won’t eat a fruit or veggie plain, but serve it with a delicious dip and they will eat no matter what you serve. This dip is super fresh and creamy and can be served with any fruit. Sometimes we like to pack it in a container and take it with us when we go swimming, to the park, or on a picnic. Continue Reading »
We took our own pledge for 100 days in part to convince others that they could follow our same “real food” rules for only 10 days. We realize not everyone is keen on the idea of going “cold turkey” with the 10 Days of Real Food pledge though, which is why we also developed 14 weeks of mini-pledges. If taking baby steps is more your speed then check out the weekly “real food” challenges detailed below.
Earlier this year we finished up these mini-pledges with our readers as a group, but just because we’re no longer taking these pledges together doesn’t mean people can’t do them on their own. If you’re interested in giving it a shot you could start at the beginning or go in your own preferred order. You could also build each week on top of the next or simply tackle one weekly challenge at a time. Our hope is if you take these mini-pledges (or the 10-day pledge) that you’ll gain a new perspective from the experience and make at least some positive long-term changes as a result. No matter what though…these pledges will get you to start reading ingredient labels (if you don’t already)!
Week 2: “Real” beverages – Beverages will be limited to coffee, tea, water, and milk (only naturally sweetened with a little honey or 100% pure maple syrup). One cup of juice will be allowed throughout the week, and wine (preferably red) will be allowed in moderation (an average of one drink per day). Continue Reading »
During our “100 Days of Real Food Pledge” we avoided all packaged foods containing more than five ingredients as well as all refined grains, sugar, and deep-fried foods. During this next challenge, which is the very last mini-pledge by the way, all we ask is for you to focus on the 5-ingredient rule no matter what those five ingredients are. Consider it to be good “practice” if you ever plan to sign up for the “10 Days of Real Food” pledge, which we of course hope is an outcome after participating in the mini-pledges!
This is one of the last “real food” mini-pledges before we reach our goal of 100 days! I did save some of the more difficult pledges for last, but I thought I would be nice and squeeze in an easy one near the end as well. At least I hope this one is easy for those of you who are reading a blog about eating real food!
So here is next week’s mini-pledge, which starts on Monday:
Mini-Pledge Week 13: June 6 – June 12 – Avoid all artificial ingredients including, but not limited to: sweeteners, flavors and colors.
One of the problems with the products of food science is that, as Joan Gussow has pointed out, they lie to your body; their artificial colors and flavors and synthetic sweeteners and novel fats confound the senses we rely on to assess new foods and prepare our bodies to deal with them. Foods that lie leave us with little choice but to eat by the number, consulting labels rather than our senses. Continue Reading »
Knowing our society’s obsession with all things sweet I have a feeling this could be the most difficult “real food” mini-pledge yet. But don’t feel discouraged because even if you only join us for a day or two, I promise it will still be an eye-opening experience proving just how sugar-obsessed our society really is. And I am not just referring to white sugar and other refined sweeteners, which we already tackled a few weeks ago. I am talking about all added sweeteners even including honey and maple syrup. As I’ve said a thousand times before, no matter what sweetener you chose (natural, organic, raw, etc.)…a sugar is a sugar and it should always be used in moderation. So what better way to learn how to reduce your consumption of sweeteners than to completely live without them for a few days? And if you think this challenge sounds like a daunting task then right there is my proof that we really are sweetener-obsessed after all.
So here is next week’s mini-pledge, which starts on Monday:
Mini-Pledge Week 12: May 30 – June 5 – Avoid all added sweeteners including, but not limited to: white sugar, brown sugar, raw sugar, honey, maple syrup, date sugar, maple sugar, sucanat, splenda, stevia, agave, fruit juice concentrate, corn syrup, high-fructose corn syrup, brown rice syrup, and cane juice. Continue Reading »