Cleaning up my crack(er) addiction

Since starting the October Unprocessed 2013 Challenge, I feel like Old Mother Hubbard.  I can still give my dog a bone because he would sell my soul three times over for a Milkbone, but my cupboards are bare since I committed to removing what processed foods were left from my nearly year-long attempt to change my eating habits. 

You can see what my pantry looked like back in April, and I'm pleased to admit that my shelves are no longer straining under the weight and pressure of entirely too much food for one person.  Ridding my supply of processed items was a huge relief but also scared the pants off of me.  What would I reach for during those moments of weakness when I want something to eat RIGHT NOW?

More than halfway through the challenge I'm pleased to report that I haven't starved to death (yet) but it will probably take me just as long to restock my pantry with the good stuff as it did to rid it of the demons.  There's a lot of label reading involved, alot of products in the stores to weed through and one thing I've learned is that just because it's organic, all-natural or non-GMO doesn't mean it's going to taste good and I'm going to like it.  Some of the things I've tried so far, I would rather starve to death than have it in my pantry again. 

I needed to replace my crack(er) pipe addiction with an acceptable alternative quickly, before I committed really bad food-related crimes.  Of course I could make my own but who the bleep has time for that?  Triscuits were my first attempt at finding an acceptable crack alternative, but after doing some research on canola oil (one of the ingredients in Triscuits) and considering I could consume enough of them to kill a lab rat, I decided to steer clear of them.

Have you ever looked at the ingredients listed on the box of your favorite crackers?  Check out the ingredients on this box of Kashi crackers - a brand that markets itself as a healthy, nothing artificial, whole grain good-for-you product.  More than 20 items listed in something you can make at home with less than 5 ingredients.  And God only know where that "natural flavor" came from.  No thanks. 

I started paying attention to sections of the grocery store that I normally blew past, never giving a second glance or much thought to and the Jewish section yielded some really great cracker finds!  Check out the ingredients on the Streit's 100% Whole Wheat Matzo crackers and the Manischewitz brand of matzo.  Pretty simple stuff, huh?

Now check out the ingredients on the Kavli Crispy Garlic crackers.  While it does contain sugar, there's not even enough of it to even register on the RDA scale so I decided they were acceptable.

Finding good, clean, unprocessed convenience items takes a bit of effort and some thinking and looking outside the box.  If there is a questionable ingredient, look it up online and I guarantee you'll find more than you need to know about it (and if it's questionable to begin with that should tell you something, no?)

It's time to slow down, unwind, unprocess and pay attention to what goes into your mouth.  Treat your body like the temple it is meant to be instead of a make-shift pup tent.  You won't regret it and I can promise there are much-better-for-you alternatives out there to the things you currently love to eat.  If I can clean up my crack(er) addiction,  I have faith that you can too!



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