I finally, months later, got around to reading this astounding, and very long article in the NY Times on healthier eating, called "Unhappy Meals" by Michael Pollan. For those who don't have the patience to wade through 12 web-pages of text (i.e. my girlfriend), here's the quick summary of his nine main recommendations:
- Eat food.
- Avoid food products that come bearing health claims.
- Especially avoid food products containing ingredients that are a) unfamiliar, b) unpronounceable c) more than five in number — or that contain high-fructose corn syrup.
- Get out of the supermarket whenever possible.
- Pay more, eat less.
- Eat mostly plants, especially leaves.
- Eat more like the French. Or the Japanese. Or the Italians. Or the Greeks. Confounding factors aside, people who eat according to the rules of a traditional food culture are generally healthier than we are.
- Cook. And if you can, plant a garden.
- Eat like an omnivore.
I find 4 and 5 to be the most challenging for me. Four because going to farmer's markets and other farm-direct providers is time intensive and a hassle. Five because I am by nature a cheapskate and like to get the most value from my food dollar, even if it means eating lower-quality food.
Still, very helpful advice that gibes with what my doctor and others have been telling me.