Despite what you may think, a whole-foods diet isn't really a "diet" and it doesn't need to come from Whole Foods Market. A whole foods diet is basically transitioning to eating more foods from their original source than foods that are processed. Our Western diet is frightfully filled with processed foods that have been stripped apart, "fortified" to make them "whole" again, and then processed more to make them taste good. They are full of man-made chemicals, petroleum by-products and preservatives used in morgues. By the time you buy them off the store shelf, you are eating only a shadow of the main ingredients. This food is a science experiment, not food from the earth. All of this processing makes it hard for your body to digest it, since it has been "messed with" and is now unrecognizable to the digestive system. Why does this matter? Your digestive system not only has to work much harder to digest it, but it also gleans much less nutrition from it, too.
I am convinced that all of this processing has created a generation of kids struggling with food allergies, auto-immune diseases and obesity. Our kids are addicted to sugar and eat such highly-processed foods, it's amazing their poor bodies can eke out any usable nutrition whatsoever. How do we change that? We change ourselves. We go back to eating what God intended and realize that it's not a sacrafice - it's a cure.
I know genetics plays a role, but since my family has been eating a whole-foods diet, we haven't seen a doctor, taken medicine, or suffered from allergies in at least 3 years. My elementary-aged son hasn't missed a day of school in 3 full years. My daughter had the H1N1 flu virus a few years ago and recovered in less than 3 days while classmates with the same diagnoses were out of school for over a week. There's something to this whole foods thing.
This kind of diet doesn't mean you have to give up everything you love. It means you find a more natural form of that favorite food. It does mean you'll be in the kitchen a bit more, but I think you'll find that serving yourself and your family homemade food that you know their bodies can utilize, feels good. YOU ARE WORTH IT, and so is your family.
My 1st recommendation is to start reading. Don't take my word for it - READ. I suggest The China Study, Forks Over Knives and Food Inc to get started. Understand where your food comes from, what its made of and how your body processes it. These books will help you see that you DO have a choice. Diseases, including cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and many others CAN BE LARGELY PREVENTED just by changing your diet.
Next up? How to Get Started on a Whole-foods Diet