Originally Posted by Forensicmom
Success Story - I have a family of 4, can you tell me how you made the switch to ALL organic? With the cost of groceries now I spend about $300.00 a week for regular groceries. Organic is almost twice as expensive. I simply can't afford that. Also, what in the world do you eat? Can you give me a sample of your diet?
We have a huge family and have sunday dinner's every week. I rotate with my sister's in law and we have about 20 people there every sunday. Any suggestions for eating and cooking food for that many if you're watching what you eat? We went last night and I was not able to eat dinner b/c it was covered in cheese. I ate a small salad and plain roll. It's hard b/c everyone was asking "why don't you like the food?"
If you shop at Farmers Markets...you get the best and it's way cheaper fruits and vegies. Our Farmers market hosts organic beef, chicken & fish as well (we're lucky) but I get only enough for me because the cost is so high for meats. I have also found a store TJs (initials of the store) that is quite reasonable in their natural foods. I have been pretty successful at getting great prices at hispanic natural food stores as well (we have an area called Little Mexico). That is the only 'cheap' routes I have found so far. The rest is MUCH harder. It has taken me years to find stuff, etc.
The gluten-free diet was a huge factor in feeling better for me (no wheat, rye, barley, or soy). I really believe cutting out gluten in my diet was what stopped the major acid creation in my stomach--it was almost immediate too, my freedom from the burn. It also helped my good friend and she has been pain-free from practically her first week (her issues weren't even half as bad as mine)--she also does not have allergic reactions to as many things (she always had a stuffy nose, etc.). That being said...the rest of my family does not follow my gluten-free 100% of the time--however, the organic fruits and veggies they enjoy and they (have to) eat the dishes I make. My hubby cooks too and his dishes are conventional--regular pasta--stuff. When I have parties...I DO cook conventional food for others, but I always make sure I have 1 or 2 dishes I can eat, you simply cannot feed 20 people an organic meal without killing your budget.
If organic is not available, all natural is fine too. Read labels if buying processed stuff (like noodles or chips or....). Can't have anything with names you can't pronounce (chemicals) and the fewer the ingredients, the better the food. All pastas and breads must be made with rice--there are several stores in my area that have organic or all natural products that specialize in gluten-free foods.
Now for the yummy stuff:...if you want more details i can provide, but here are some general things my family loves and is organic/all natural AND gluten free
Rice Dishes: jambalaya, chicken & rice, beef&rice with zucchini, stuffed bell peppers
Rice Pasta Dishes: there are certain brands i have found that hold together better than others.
"Regular" meals: Are basically a protein, 1 or 2 vegies & maybe a starch, we eat more of these kinds of meals for their simplicity. Steam vegies and broil the meats are my favorites in cooking.
Snacks: artichoke dip, guacamole & fresh MILD salsas, vegie chips & all corn chips, fresh fruits & vegies with all natural dip (I do a light ranch) OR a fruity organic yogurt as a dip in the summer, Crackers & cheese (Ener-T is the only good brand of crackers)--organic cheese can be expensive tho.
You may want to try the gluten-free diet (on your own first) as part of your experiment to stopping your pain. Each person is different, I just know that my suffering has basically stopped (as long as I stay on the diet, even one regular sized portion of conventional food will cause a reaction in me) and not having to live with the burn is worth everything--I am so much happier and healthier. Yes it does bump up your budget...however, an organic apple will give you 5 times more nutrition than a conventional apple --and it's like that for most organic VS conventional foods. Organics also do not stay fresh for very long so I use those green bags or refrigerate where I can.
If you want specifics on say your party you need to throw and you want to know how to make an organic (insert dish name here)...I may be able to give you some substitution ideas for stuff you just can't find as organic or gluten free.
I hope I have answered your question and maybe given you a few ideas. Good luck and eat well!