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You first have to know how to identify “real foods“, and then slowly introduce them into your diet. Real food may actually cost a bit more (trust me… its worth it!) and your taste buds might need to adjust.

Let me give a concrete example. If you eat the Standard American Diet (SAD) chances are the bread you eat is not real food but a chemical concoction. One brand of bread I recommend (that is actual real food and truly whole grain) is Ezekiel (I have no financial ties to the company!). Now, if you normally eat Wonder Bread, then the first time you try Ezekiel you may think you’re chewing on cardboard! Actually, you are tasting real whole grain bread. Hang in there and after a couple of weeks your taste buds will adjust.

Another example, is the peanut butter in your house Skippy, one of the top selling peanut butters in the US? If so, the ingredient list of “Skippy Reduced Fat Creamy Peanut Butter Spread” includes: Roasted Peanuts, Corn Syrup Solids, Sugar, Soy Protein concentrate, Salt, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Mono and Di-Glycerides, minerals and vitamins. I’m not sure I know what half that stuff is! One thing I do know, it is a chemical concoction that sort of looks and tastes like peanut butter, but isn’t. If it’s ‘real’ peanut butter the ingredient list will just be roasted peanuts and maybe salt. That’s all. Literally peanuts that have been ground up, not the chemistry experiment gone awry that passes for peanut butter in most supermarkets.

These are just 2 simple examples but there are many, many others. Once you start this process you should go through your cupboard and throw out the stuff that’s not real food and slowly replace it.

If you are interested in learning more about this topic, there is a great book I recommend that is detailed and very easy to read: “How to Eat” by Mark Bittman and David Katz. It’s very short (you could probably read the whole book in a couple of hours) and written in a question and answer format that is chock-full of really useful information.

By Dr. Michael Bilof