The title of this post is from the dedication page of the new book by Integrative Nutrition Health Coach Maria Marlowe, The Real Food Grocery Guide — and, seriously, doesn’t that speak to every last one of us? I mean, I know food … and I’ve still found myself standing in the produce section, slack-jawed and glassy-eyed with an empty basket hanging off my arm while I try to figure out which of the 90 different greens would be the best choice for today’s salad.
Marlowe’s quest to find real food that she loved to eat began with a pimple, which turned into full-fledged acne, which led to a period of time when she didn’t even want to leave the house. Eventually, a peer helped her realize that what she ate didn’t only affect weight, but also things like skin, memory and overall health, and from there she began seeking out real food … and realizing that navigating the local supermarket can be wholly overwhelming. In fact, she created a funny video to illustrate some of the common struggles well-intentioned shoppers face on a regular basis.
But what’s the book really have to offer, you ask? In a nutshell, it’s a supermarket road map, explaining what “healthy foods” really are (and, spoiler — it’s definitely not all about calories!), how to decipher buzz words, how to choose — and store — produce and animal products, and even how to save time and money while you’re at it. You’ll get tips on what to look for (and avoid) when it comes to packaged foods, how to choose the animal products that are best for you, which foods you should probably always keep in your pantry, what to look for by season and more — and it’s all written from Marlowe’s point of view, infusing humor along with research-based science to bring her points home. Many pages also call out expert tips, so even if you’re not sitting down to read the book from cover to cover, you can easily browse through and learn a little something new.
Bottom line: This book provides both a general overview of what foods are truly good for you and specific tips on how to find, prepare and store loads of fruits, veggies, herbs and more. You want to see which seafood is most sustainable with the least amount of mercury? It’s in there. Curious about the best uses for avocado oil and how it’s different than grapeseed or olive oil? No problem. Basically, if you’re interested in food and health, this is a serious page turner!
What kind of burning questions do you have about food? —Kristen