Healthier Eating in 12 Words


I’ve done a fair bit of reading and research on food since being diagnosed with cancer in 2008. As a result, I’ve made many changes in how I eat. I even published the wildly unsuccessful Hamel Diet.

I am not a nutritionist, dietitian, fifth-level vegan or food Nazi. I don’t push my views on others but I don’t mind sharing what I’m learning with anyone who’s interested in healthier eating.

Still reading? Let me condense dozens of books and documentaries into four foundational pads on which to build a solid diet:

EAT REAL FOOD. Much of what’s in stores is chemically adulterated food-like products. Look for a short list of ingredients—or none at all.

EAT WHOLE FOOD. Don’t focus on components (e.g. vitamins, proteins, fats). With food, the whole is more important than the sum of its parts.

EAT FRESH FOOD. Get food in as close to its original state as possible. The fewer steps between harvesting and consuming the better.

EAT FOR PLEASURE. Food is more than fuel. Michael Pollan puts eating in perspective in his book, In Defense of Food:

We forget that, historically, people have eaten for a great many reasons other than biological necessity. Food is also about pleasure, about community, about family and spirituality, about our relationship to the natural world, and about expressing our identity. As long as humans have been eating meals together, eating has been as much about culture as it has been about biology.

Bon Appétit!

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