Whole foods celebrated during National Nutrition Month

Mary Lou Block in her garden

Whole foods celebrated during National Nutrition Month

By Mary Lou Block, RDN

Apparently, I don’t send my husband to the grocery store often enough.  I mean, what other conclusion would you come to when he says, “I wish they made good, old-fashion potato chips like they used to…you know, waffle ones.” 

I didn’t have the heart to tell him they do, but I bypass them, focusing on whole foods.  Processed food and chemical additives create inflammation and contribute to chronic health problems. 

My husband knows this so instead, I spoke of skyrocketing chip prices, emphasizing my frugality.  I felt guilty for denying his chip craving, so today I had a change of heart at the grocery store. “Why not surprise him and get two chip choices?  What’s wrong with a bit of variety from our whole foods diet”, I thought as I scoured the chip aisle.  I selected two, a generic brand for under $3 and another old-time classic.  I headed to “streamlined” self-checkout. 

Have you noticed that self-checkout lacks human gate keepers?  No disapproving or sideways glances from a store clerk as if to say, “I thought you were a nutritionist and eating healthy”?   Checkout is just you and your conscience as you scan, load, calculate. Checkout glitches and crumpled cash refused by the machine, finally tipped my whole foods and budget conscience to “guilty”.  So, I sheepishly requested help to return one bag of chips before I hurried to the car. 

Feeling relieved that I had more closely followed my conscience, I began loading the car.  My eyes fell on the remaining bag of chips, unscanned in my grocery cart.  I was not only in possession of chemical food, but of stolen property!

I scurried back to the store with my chips.  “Do you want to go through self-checkout?” the store employee asked. 

“No, thank you,” I said. “I think I’ll skip the chips, it’s National Nutrition Month.  My husband prefers whole foods.”

Happy National Nutrition Month everyone.  Make this month and every day whole foods. 

Moral:  Whole foods 

  • grow in or on the ground, walk on the ground, fly in the air, swim in the water.

  • are found on the perimeter of the grocery store.

  • are nutrient dense.

If you are tempted to cheat on your diet, consider checkout lanes with clerks, and read the following ingredient label:

Cheetos:  13 ingredients: 6 processed foods, 7 chemical additives, sugar as maltodextrin, inflammatory omega 6 oils, salt.

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