When you have a large family like the Duggars – and in their case, it’s a laaaaarrrrrrgge family – getting everyone fed three times a day is a challenge and a half. The cost of feeding a household of 20 (that includes parents Michelle and Jim Bob and the 18 children who still live at home) is one issue; finding food that everyone will eat is another.
Most moms in that situation would probably give in to the temptation to slap some bologna and American cheese on a pile of white bread for every lunch or boil a pot of pasta and call it a day. I wouldn’t be surprised if Michelle has gone that route herself.
But things may be about to change in the Duggar world. Michelle writes in her TLC blog this week that her family has been learning the benefits of eating healthier.
While attending a Christian family conference in San Antonio, the Duggars decided to take a few cooking classes while they were at it. They enjoyed learning how to make authentic French stocks and sauces, but Michelle’s favorite class by far was one on raw food.
“I was encouraged by how we can do better and do more of it for the family,” she writes. “And it was very yummy! I’m excited about the recipes and can really see my kids eating the dishes.”
For instance, the megafamily discovered that raw walnuts chopped up with cumin and other Mexican spices make a delicious vegan alternative to ground beef in tacos.
Raw-food proponents believe that uncooked fruits and vegetables contain more nutrients and enzymes than cooked ones, making them healthier.
“It was really encouraging after we learned these raw food techniques and the benefit of buying organic produce when you can,” says Michelle. “We realized we can buy local in our area, and that buying in bulk is key for our family.” The family also takes advantage of their natural foods co-op, where they can buy and split batches of organic produce together with friends.
There’s one aspect of the raw-food movement that the Duggars aren’t embracing just yet. People who eat raw food tend to be vegetarians, and the family does eat meat. However, Michelle says they buy organic beef, which is raised humanely and without pesticide-laden feed.
Not everyone agrees that raw food is always best. For instance, studies have found that people who eat raw have low levels of the antioxidant lycopene, found in red fruits and vegetables – and cooking tomatoes increases their lycopene content significantly. Cooking certain other veggies, such as broccoli and carrots, also brings out their antioxidant properties.
But hats off to Michelle for doing her part to keep her family both fed and healthy!
[Photo: courtesy TLC]
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