In all honesty processing food is what we do to food to take it from its whole form and make it so it can be eaten. Grinding grain into flour, or sprouting it is a form of processing.
What we do not want to eat is refined foods and manufactured processed food. When the germ is taken out of the wheat and the flour becomes white, with nutrients removed, manufacturers will add products back in to the flour to try to make it more nutritious. This is the type of food we do not want to eat. This is the type of food we need to clear out of our pantries. But the world calls it processed food. So understand that we are talking about food that has been altered from its natural state with additives, preservatives, and many other items added that are not pronounceable or are just numbers or initials.
The reason for not eating processed food could take up an entire book on its own. High fructose corn syrup, Monosodium Glutamate, additives including: dyes, flavorings, preservatives, emulsifier, stabilizers, enzymes, extracts are added to the food to help it last long, look better, be well formed, and a multitude of other reasons.
Changing to a fresh food, local grown diet is not generally something to be done overnight. When my husband and I decided to change we filled boxes with food from our pantry and cupboards and donated them to a food pantry. We did change overnight and it was expensive to do so. You will not fully understand why certain items need to changed yet so take it slow if you desire.
When I needed to have a good supply of food for my family, it was much easier if I built shelves and then I had a place I was motivated to fill up with food. I replaced the empty shelves with full shelves of food. We want you to replace your processed food with real food. So bring in the real food and push out the processed, refined food.
We cleaned out anything that had ‘partially hydrogenated oil’ or ‘partially hydrogenated fat’ which are trans-fat. We cleaned out all cooking oils except olive oil. Yes that included Canola Oil. Whole Foods and Trader Joe continue to manufacture their products using the “healthy” Canola Oil. Although I shop at both stores and can get items there I cannot get at other stores, I must read labels and be very careful. Canola Oil is no more healthy than any of the other oils.
“Fake food – I mean those patented substances chemically flavored and mechanically bulked out to kill the appetite and deceive the gut-is unnatural, almost immoral, a bane to good eating and good cooking.” Julia Child, Chef
Interestingly enough we think that this change in eating poor food choices has happened in the last 50 decades. I was just reading about the conditions in the 1930s.
“Too much of the modern food supply comes from tin cans or packages, for often women as well as men work in factories and offices, and the can opener is coming to be the most used kitchen implement. Certain classes of our so-called civilized people, who in this “machine age” are industrially rather than agriculturally minded, have come to subsist in large measure upon a diet of soft, highly refined and concentrated foods . . . A typical modern diet of meat, white bread, refined cereals, potatoes and sweets [is] unquestionably bad.” (Widtsoe, Leah and John, The Word of Wisdom: A Modern Interpretation, pp. 15–16)
They stated that diet of their day was “not as wholesome as it was two generations ago.” How much worse are we today several generations later?