What’s for Breakfast?
As the saying goes, “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” I’m not sure if that applies in all instances, but it certainly should apply to the way we eat. We would be wise to learn from the healthy and robust lives of our ancestors and imitate their eating styles today. And a good place to start is by starting your day off right!
Breakfast Then and Now
I once found a book in a used bookstore that I used to teach my boys English composition when I homeschooled them years ago. The book was printed in 1906. One of the lessons was to write a composition entitled “What I Ate for Breakfast.”
To get the students started, it offered an example of a well-written story, and it read something like this:
“Today, I had a glass of milk from Bessie after milking her this morning. It was still warm. I put a big chunk of butter and a pool of cream that Sissy collected and made this weekend on my cooked oats. I put a little honey from our bees on top, too. Mother collected eggs this morning, and I had one with my beef steak. I helped raise the beef cattle last spring from which the steak came.”
So that’s what a breakfast was like in the early 1900s!
No cold cereal!?
No 2% or soy milk!?
No orange juice from a box!?
Nothing but farm fresh, real, all-American foods. Foods full of nutrients, including plenty of healthy saturated fats and proteins to keep mind and body going strong all day long!
How did we get from beef steak and eggs to cold cereal and soy milk? The Industrial Revolution produced many modern “conveniences” designed to make our lives easier, including pre-processed and quick foods.
Unfortunately, to achieve that convenience, we lost vital nutrients in the processing, added preservatives, flavorings and other chemicals that our bodies do not know how to process, and introduced new forms of stress to our lives, resulting in bodies that crave nutrients and support that modern foods no longer provide.
In addition, new “health” studies, many of which have since been called into question, began to advocate that certain foods were harmful to our health, causing heart disease and cancer.
Take eggs, for example. They have been vilified to the point that some people no longer eat whole, healthy eggs, opting for the trendier egg whites. Yet, just this month, the British Medical Journal published a study showing that eating an egg a day does not raise your risk of coronary heart problems and may lower your risk of hemorrhagic stroke.
Despite these modern “improvements,” today we suffer from cancer, chronic diseases, food allergies, dental decay and mental illnesses that were largely unheard of in the 1900s.
Sally Fallon in her book Nourishing Traditions (1999, NewTrends Publishing) writes: “Modern food choices and preparation techniques constitute a radical change in the way man has nourished himself for thousands of years and, from the perspective of history, represent a fad that not only has severely compromised his health and vitality but may well destroy him…The culinary traditions of our ancestors, and the food choices and preparation techniques of healthy non-industrialized peoples, should serve as the model for contemporary eating habits, even and especially during this modern technological age.”
Fast forward to 2000. Our son is in 9th grade, and the teacher asks the students to write a composition on what they ate for breakfast.
(Some things never change.)
My son writes that he has homemade ice cream that we made that morning from raw cream. The cream came from our co-op cow down the road. He and his brothers helped gather the honey from our bees to sweeten his breakfast ice cream. The eggs that richened it came from our chickens and were still warm when he collected them that morning. He also mentions that his beef steak was tougher than usual but tasty because it was raised by our farmer friends. He then washes down his cod liver oil with a glass of raw milk.
In short, my sons ate like the children of the 1900s. What made me come around to the idea that the old way is the better way?
It was making enough mistakes nutritionally, my friends. I came to recognize that my previous ways during years of veganism and macrobiotics and then pathology in my first son was detrimental to our health. During those years, I made many mistakes, but I eventually came to learn that the traditional, nutrient-dense methods of eating are classical, scientifically proven, intelligent and downright homey.
Now my sons are grown men and continue to eat the kind of breakfast children ate in the early 1900s. I can’t say they remember how to write a well-structured composition, but I know they learned their nutrition lessons well.
Fast forward again to 2013, and my youngest son tells me that his recent exam was a snap. He attributed it to his breakfast of raw eggs whipped up in his raw milk with added cream.
Oh…and a small beef steak on the side.
The information provided in this article is for educational purposes only
and may not be construed as medical advice. The reader is encouraged to make
independent inquires and to seek the advice of a licensed healthcare
in finding out if homeopathy is a fit for you and your family's health
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