So far, October Unprocessed has been relatively easy. There have been a few frustrations here and there, like not being able to order any delicious snacks while watching Breaking Bad at the Alamo Drafthouse. And then I had to explain why I wasn’t eating any of the free Chinese food we got at work on Monday. But the actual eating part has been great. I’m rediscovering my love of cooking and exploring lots of new recipes. I’m eating healthier than I have in a long time.
It’s frustrating to realize just how much space in grocery stores is occupied by things full of artificial chemicals. It’s amazing how many things I like I just can’t have right now. But I also remember how lucky I am. I have privileges that allow me to take this challenge in the first place. I don’t live in a food desert – I have access to lots of fresh produce (which currently comprises the bulk of my meals). I have leisure time on weekends to bake bread from scratch. I have a car, so a trip to the grocery store takes 20 minutes rather than 2 hours. I have income to shop at more upscale grocery stores which offer a better variety of unprocessed foods. This challenge can be tricky sometimes, but it’s a challenge I might not be able to take in different circumstances.
Overall, this has been a positive experience so far, and I’m already considering the extent to which I want to make unprocessed eating part of my daily life after October. Ideally, it would be forever, but that would mean never eating at certain restaurants or cooking certain comfort foods ever again. I’m trying to figure out what sort of balance I want to strike.