My Food Revolution

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I’m having one of those mornings.  I woke up at 4:30 AM feeling hot and nauseous, couldn’t fall back asleep for an hour, and then woke up at 6:30 feeling groggy and crappy.  Hopefully, a nice bike ride will cure me!


Breakfast helped, too:


I made a grilled peanut butter and banana sandwich.  Technique was the same as a grilled cheese, but instead of cheese, I used almond butter, cinnamon, and 1/2 a banana.


It was obviously delicious!


Food Revolution?


Have you guys been watching Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution on ABC?  So, Jamie Oliver is a famous British chef who influenced his country’s public school lunches to be less processed and more wholesome.  Now he’s trying to do the same thing in America.

As the trailer (below) states, Jaime believes that each little change can make a big difference.

I’m all behind the premise of Food Revolution, of course.  Jaime is trying to do things like:


  • Ban fried and processed meats from the cafeteria.
  • Eliminate sugary strawberry and chocolate milk so the children can only drink real milk.
  • Offer a variety of vegetables, including “sneaky” vegetables in pasta sauces and chilis.
  • Remove junk food like French fries.
  • Educate children, parents, and administrators on the value of real food vs. fake food.
  • Teach people in the city how to cook and shop for wholesome food.


However… after 5 episodes, I kind of feel like Food Revolution is getting repetitive.  There are so many issues in our industrialized food system, and I’d love for them to get into more detail about it.  Then again, I realize that Food Revolution is meant for mass consumption on a major news network… but I’d still like to see some other information.


In honor of Food Revolution, here are the four books, blogs, and movies that resulted in my own personal eating revolution.


Food Blogs


In December of 2007, I started to read Food Blogs.  I found Kath’s blog via and was immediately intrigued.  Here was a girl who ate big bowls of REAL oatmeal (not the instant kind) and full-fat cheese.  And liked it!  And was maintaining her weight loss!  I was floored.  I was maintaining a 10 pound weight loss and was still in the mindset of “I need to buy the yogurt with the least amount of calories” and never actually looked at the ingredients list (Dannon Light n Fit, anyone?).  After I found Kath’s blog, I began to read a bunch of similar blogs that focused on eating real, wholesome food, not gimmicky diet food


In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan


In Summer 2008 (at the start of my blog), I went to Barnes and Noble and picked up “In Defense of Food” by Michael Pollan.  I had read a review of the book on a food blog and was intrigued.  Pollan’s conclusion in the Introduction – “Eat Food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” – hit me like a ton of bricks.  You mean eating doesn’t have to be insanely complicated?  You mean I should stop looking at bread as “carbs” and meat as “protein”?  Whoa.  Everything Pollan wrote made a ton of sense to me, and I started to clean up my diet, eliminating many processed foods that I still relied on.  If you have not read this book yet, you must!

Skinny Bitch


In April 2009, I was in the airport, browsing the book shop to find something to entertain me during the 2 hour flight to see my best friend, Sarah.  I picked up Skinny Bitch by by Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin.  I read the entire book during my flight (it’s a quick read).  Basically a vegan manifesto, Skinny Bitch literally freaked me out so bad that I stopped eating meat then and there.  At the BBQ Party the next day, I told a stranger I was a vegetarian (he said, “Oh how long have you been vegetarian?” and I replied, “Uhh a day?”) and that was that. 

Skinny Bitch has it’s pros and cons (like it’s heinous title and cover), but it’s an eye-opening book.  You can read my complete review of Skinny Bitch here.  


Food Inc.


In June 2009, I saw the movie Food Inc. and it transformed the way I think about our food system.  “The industry doesn’t want you to know the truth about what you’re eating, because if you did, you might not eat it.”  This movie is what got me interested in learning more about the industrialization of our food and factory farming.  I loved Food Inc. because I felt like it was appropriate for a wide audience – meat eaters and veggies – and it didn’t push a certain viewpoint.  It really has a great message, and I would recommend that everyone check out this movie!

You can read my review of Food Inc, which includes tons of facts from the movie, here.


All that information led me to where I am now.  My diet includes beer and occasional junk food, and I’m not a ‘perfect’ ethical eater.  However, I think about the impact my food choices have on my body, the planet, and animals.  I hope programs like Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution gets more people in our country thinking about these critical issues.


What sparked your “Food Revolution?”



  • Freya @ Brit Chick Runs April 20, 2010, 8:28 am

    I have such similar motives to you! The first blog I ever saw was Kath’s and it turned my life around – I went from being in an ED frame of mind where it was all about how few cals I could get, regardless of the amount of aspartame, to being someone who tries to eat whole, good foods – full fat, no added crap.The second blog I found was YOURS! And I give it just as much credit for turning my life round. You’ve been an INCREDIBLE inspiration to me, and I seriously can’t thankyou enough!! (Literally, if I could send you an infinite amount of ££ or pumpkin yogurt as thanks, I would!)

    Skinny Bitch was big for me too – that was a shock and made me far more conscious about where my food comes from (ie free range chicken etc). I’m part way through The Food Revolution too, so we’ll see what that does…
    And I’ve found running has helped, cos it’s made me want to fuel my body as efficiently as possible – carbs, fat, protein – it’s all good!!
    Oh, and cooking – now I know how to make tasty healthy food, I’d never want to go back!

    (ps – I love Jamie Oliver. He’s a secret crush of mine, along with Gordan Ramsay :p)

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 8:29 am

      i have a majoooorah crush on jamie. 🙂

      thank you my dear!

    • Jessica @ The Process of Healing April 20, 2010, 9:56 am

      My story is exactly the same!!! It all started with Kath and then with this blog and then running… And Skinny Bitch scared the crap out of me!!

      • Jessica April 20, 2010, 1:45 pm

        funny, me too Kath, then Cat….I dont have a blog but I am doing BETTER not being scared of food…

        LOVE Jamie Oliver (hotness) and watched Food INC….borderling vegeterain…guess I need to read Skinny Bitch now.

  • Evan Thomas April 20, 2010, 8:29 am

    What a great background story! I don’t even remember who, if anyone, it was in particular, but something about becoming a blogger last Summer led me to denounce artificial sugars, and after that the rest came naturally. I love how you were inspired by Kath. For me, my intro into healthy living blogs was Tina at Carrots N’ Cake

  • Meghan@traveleatlove April 20, 2010, 8:30 am

    I love Mireille Giuliano’s books French Women Don’t Get Fat and French Women for All Seasons. Already becoming accustomed to a European type diet since living abroad, these books drove it home that all foods could be part of my life.

  • jen trinque April 20, 2010, 8:32 am

    Awesome post! My “food revolution” has happened slowly over the years, but some books and resources that have influenced it: The China Study by T. Colin Campbell, both The Omnivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan, Intuitive Eating, I can’t remember the author’s names at this moment, The Engine 2 Diet by Rip Esselstyn. Reading food blogs has helped, too. I enjoy seeing people eat real food instead of drinking soda and eating energy bars all day.

  • megan April 20, 2010, 8:32 am

    I still haven’t seen food, inc but I want to. My husband is trying to keep me from watching it because he’s afraid I’ll never eat meat again.

    my intro to food blogs came from self, from kristin’s blog. I loved seeing how she ate so simply and focused on food groups, not calories

    • Morgan April 20, 2010, 1:46 pm

      They point of Food Inc, isn’t to sway you from eating meat, it is to help you realize your sources and stop buying from those farmers who treat the animals and workers badly (Tyson, among others). Sure, if you buy free range grass fed beef you will spend more, but you also realize why you are spending more. There should not be as many cattle farms as we have now in the US-beef was not meant to be consumed at every meal (neither is pork or any other meat).

      • megan April 20, 2010, 1:53 pm

        Thanks for your reply. I realize that that isn’t the point of the movie, but I tend to have a weak stomach sometimes. I think my husband is just afraid that after I have these images in my head, I won’t be able to cook or eat meat, at least for awhile. and he loves his meat. i already am grossed out by raw chicken…i make him handle it if he’s around! 🙂

      • Julie @savvyeats April 20, 2010, 2:35 pm

        This is what Food, Inc. has done for me! I avoid meats from Tyson and the cheap grocery stores now, and try to stick with local, non-factory-farmed meat

  • Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin April 20, 2010, 8:34 am

    Food Inc’s opening (or close to opening line) that says something to the effect of, “Our diet has changed more in the last 5o years than it did in the last 10,000” was very eye opening for me. I was eating a lot of processed foods and 100 calorie packs of snacks, etc. etc. I also read Skinny Bitch and still can’t get some of the images out of my head. Those two were major in my food revolution.

  • John April 20, 2010, 8:35 am

    Food and fitness bloggers like yourself sparked me. I also found Kath’s blog and thought the same thing that I could eat real food and lose weight so eventually it all sunk in and I started my own journey to eating healthy and getting fit.

  • Deva (Voracious Vorilee) April 20, 2010, 8:36 am

    I found KathEats and subsequently HTP while I was making a transition in my household from fewer processed foods to more whole foods. I got so much inspiration from both blogs and now am blogging about my own healthy lifestyle.

  • Daniel April 20, 2010, 8:37 am

    Finding Kath’s blog helped me a LOT personally. I’ve learned quite a few things from her and one of her articles for helped me stop counting calories for good during Lent. I also have read Michael Pollen’s Omnivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food, and generally more and more people are coming to realize that you should eat basic real food.
    Food Inc. was pretty decent and helped my support of local grown and whole foods, and I truly love what Jamie is doing, I support him 100% of the way.

  • Katie @ Two Lives, One Lifestyle April 20, 2010, 8:38 am

    I’d have to say my “food revolution” was really similar to yours. I read Skinny Bitch in college and went vegetarian for awhile. More for the skinny benefits at that point than anything else (well the meat industry part was pretty shocking). Movies like Fast Food Nation started me thinking more about the FOOD part of it way back when. After college, I read Pollan and some other food industry books, watched Food Inc… all of it… and eventually found food blogs like Kath’s where people actually put what I was reading into some practice. While I was freaked out by a lot of what I was reading it seemed hard to change for some reason but a lot of food blogs were great role models and examples!

  • Brigid April 20, 2010, 8:39 am

    I struggle to add more “whole” foods to my house. I have three kids, that are tough to cook for and a husband that can be close minded to certain foods. The word “organic” freaks him out. Anyway, I eat yogurt as do two of my kids. I buy the light n fit by dannon. Any suggestions on how to ween us all off of this into a yogurt with less sugar. Note, I took my kids for frozen yogurt that was more greek style than traditional and they were less than receptive b/c of the tartness.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 8:43 am

      There are plently of flavored yogurts that aren’t tart or unhealthy. The Stonyfield line is less expensive than Greek but wayyyyy healthier than Light and Fit.


      Also, the way I weaned myself off Light N Fit and onto Plain Greek was by mixing in honey or maple syrup and then slowly reducing that.

      Hope that helps!

      • Rachel S April 20, 2010, 9:51 pm

        Another good way to make a plain yogurt more flavorful is to add a little spoonful (no more than a tbsp) of fruit jam. My favorite is blueberry jam..a little goes a long way and it tastes great!

  • Jenn @ LiveWellFitNow April 20, 2010, 8:40 am

    My food revolution is still ongoing I would say. 🙂 It started 2 years ago when I read the book Intuitive Eating. I had been caught in this world of dieting, good/bad foods, carbs, proteins, ugh my mind didn’t even know what to do anymore! Intuitive Eating enabled me to look at food again with an open, blank slate. I first tried to remove my labels of food. I looked at food as just that, food. If that involved oreos for dinner well then friends, that is what I had! This was a process I HAD to go through before I could move on.

    After about 6 months of settling with Intuitive Eating, I started to read In Defense of Food. My world was forever changed with that book. The ideas were so clear and so real to me. Similar to how you felt Caitlin, it didn’t have to be complicated anymore! Brilliant! So I began to do 1 simple thing: I started to think, really think about my food. What was I putting in this body, how did it make me feel, what was WORTH eating and what wasn’t. I started to make an effort to remove additives and processed food from my life. I felt amazing!

    Then last week I watched Food Inc, FINALLY! That just took my efforts to a whole level again. I demand better foods for me, my family, my friends, children and for everyone else. We deserve better.

    But, I have to also be honest today. I’m not perfect. I eat junk still sometimes and I try to tame the guilty/shameful feeling I get when I do. I don’t want my efforts to turn in to a mind game that takes me back in to the world of labeling food. I think my revolution has become about balance. A balance of the purest, most simple food with a healthy dose of crap in there every so often! 🙂

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 8:44 am

      the ability to appreciate balance is an amazing gift you can give to yourself. 🙂

  • Little Bookworm April 20, 2010, 8:41 am

    Amazing post Caitlin! 😀

  • Jenn @ The Fresh Food Family April 20, 2010, 8:42 am

    Oh, Food, Inc. definitely sparked my food revolution. I even started a new blog (The Fresh Food Family) within 24 hours after seeing it!
    I’m on a mission to change my family’s eating habits, based on what I saw in that movie. I am also going to read Michael Pollan’s books next – I think he’s got the right idea!

  • Kelly April 20, 2010, 8:43 am

    I agree with you about Food Revolution- I like the premise and I’m interested in it, especially being a teacher and seeing the direct result of the unhealthy foods on the kids- but it is a bit repetitive so far.

    My Food Revolution began when I was diagnosed with IBS and suddenly had to look at the ingredients in everything. This opened my eyes to what I was really eating and the effects it had on my body. I am almost done with In Defense of Food and it’s already got me incorporating more veggies into my diet. Of course, food blogs/healthy living blogs have had a huge impact on me as well.

  • Coco April 20, 2010, 8:43 am

    The only thing that worries me about Jamie Oliver’s revolution in schools is the fact that, although childhood obesity is a huge problem in America, so are eating disorders. As someone who has struggled with an eating disorder myself, I worry that removing “junk” food or chocolate milk from cafeterias could give children the wrong idea. I don’t think there should be any “good” or “bad” foods–it’s all about balance. Instead of telling kids they shouldn’t have fried chicken, why not teach them to balance their eating habits and lifestyle??

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 8:47 am

      I kind of agree, but… most children cannot be “trusted” to make healthy decisions with their food. If you give children a choice between plain milk and strawberry sugar milk, they will almost never choose the plain, and certainly not because it’s healthier. Same thing with pizza, French fries, etc. I personally don’t even think kids should have the option to choose “bad”/junky foods EVERY SINGLE DAY. Maybe Fridays can be a junky food day or something to teach them moderation? I feel like kids will always choose the junk over real food if it’s there every day.


      • Coco April 20, 2010, 8:54 am

        I do agree that most kids will definitely opt for the tastier options, which are usually less nutritional. And I absolutely agree that we should be eating natural, WHOLE foods and unprocessed meats, etc. It would be expensive to do this in schools but may also be worth it. My family eats mostly organic, and growing up my mom usually cooked balanced meals like grilled chicken with rice and vegetables, and I think it’s definitely a good thing to pass on to your kids.

        However, I can’t help but wonder if changing the food in schools will really solve childrens’ bad eating habits. I definitely think Jamie Oliver is on the right track with wanting to educate PARENTS as well. Because what good would it do if children were fed natural, nutritional foods at school, and then came home and their parents made them fried fish sticks and mac & cheese out of a box for dinner?

        So, I definitely see both sides. I guess I just worry for young children on both sides of the spectrum–obesity and inactivity is harmful to your health, but so is dieting and overexercising and obsessing about eating “right”.

        • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 8:56 am

          i agree… we definitely don’t need more children obsessed with food in a bad way. operation beautiful has certainly showed me that we have enough of that problem now!!!

        • Coco April 20, 2010, 8:59 am

          absolutely! and i hope you don’t think i was completely attacking or disagreeing with your post…i love your blog because you seem to have a balanced approach to life in terms of food and exercise, and you are always sure to fuel your body properly when working out, which is important.

          i also LOVE operation beautiful, which has really helped me in my recovery from anorexia. i commend you for everything you have done for young girls and women, and i can’t wait to read the o.b. book!

        • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 9:22 am

          Definitely did not think you were attacking! Sharing a different opinion or thought process in such a thoughtful and insigthful manner is always appreciated on HTP. That’s how we all learn new things! Thanks Coco!

        • Sarah for Real April 20, 2010, 10:58 am

          There are millions of kids on free and reduced lunch programs in this country who eat both breakfast and lunch at school, and that’s pretty much the only food they see.

          The school lunch programs reach out directly in that gap where poverty defines knowledge and skills related to food. There is a reason that our poorest areas happen to also be the fattest. It takes time and skills to cook “proper food” (Jamie’s words), something many struggling single working parents don’t have. I love the education that Jamie’s program provides to parents, but even if it only goes so far as feeding kids proper food for breakfast and lunch, that’s still going to prove a massive change.

      • Julie @savvyeats April 20, 2010, 2:40 pm

        I agree, kids will usually choose the option that is less-than healthy because it tastes good. But I do like that Jamie is offering healthier nachos, etc at lunch… they still get to enjoy foods that are traditionally junk, but in a healthier way!

      • Katherina @ Zephyr Runs May 18, 2011, 9:05 am

        Junky food days would make it seem as though it were a reward. Bad food shouldn’t be a reward… I’m with you in that I don’t think they should have a bad-for-you option!

    • jen trinque April 20, 2010, 12:02 pm

      This is such an interesting debate – the last thing we want schools to do is foster eating disorders! But based on what I have seen of Food Revolution so far (just the first three episodes) these kids are eating junk, junk, junk, and home and at school. They wouldn’t ever choose the healthier option because they probably don’t even know what it is! I absolutely think the parents need to be educated and aware.

      • Morgan April 20, 2010, 2:11 pm

        I agree with Sarah. Those 2 meals the kids eat at school are the healthiest they eat all day.

        I had this debate at my bookclub meeting-are we currently experiencing a survival of the fittest? (Read: richest). Those who have health insurance tend to get regular check-ups and are healthier. Those who eat fewer processed foods, are healthier and live longer and also happen to have money. I think this is a recent revelation, because processed foods didn’t start sprouting up until the early 80’s with the addition of the microwave to each household and the American suddenly because obsessed with how fast a meal could cook. And look at what it is leading to-a nation of kids AND adults with hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, etc. And this current generation of kids are the first generation to be predicted to live shorter lives than the previous generations. (I just lost my 43 year old uncle to heart disease-his mother is still living). Scary times! My only thought is I think it’s sad that it takes a TV show to kick start our Food Revolution. This is one time the government needs to relinquish control of the USDA/FDA etc and privatize those with selected individuals who are not the head of the Cattle/Dairy Industry and those who care about the health of our citizens!

        PS MAJOR crush on Jamie Oliver. Major. And how cute are his kids?!?! I want my kids to have a British accent!

    • Julie @savvyeats April 20, 2010, 2:42 pm

      I agree, kids will usually choose the option that is less-than healthy because it tastes good. And we don’t want to swing the other way, where kids are afraid of food or have eating disorders That’s why I do like that Jamie is offering healthier nachos, etc at some lunches… they still get to enjoy foods that are traditionally junk, but in a healthier way!

  • Coco April 20, 2010, 8:44 am

    *edit: there SHOULDN’T be good or bad foods!

    • Coco April 20, 2010, 9:01 am

      absolutely! i hope you don’t think i was completely attacking or disagreeing with your post…i love your blog because you seem to have a balanced approach to life in terms of food and exercise, and you are always sure to fuel your body properly when working out, which is important.

      i also LOVE operation beautiful, which has really helped me in my recovery from anorexia. i commend you for everything you have done for young girls and women, and i can’t wait to read the o.b. book!

  • Heather (Heather's Dish) April 20, 2010, 8:46 am

    this is a great post! i would say that reading food blogs was the thing that has slowly made me less afraid of real food and has opened my eyes to the things those books/movies you mentioned above preach about. it’s been slow going, but i’ve started to eat better and i’ve seen a huge difference in my energy and view towards life in general 🙂

  • Ari April 20, 2010, 8:46 am

    I am totally behind getting better food in schools and on dinner tables. But what really bothers me about Food Revolution is that I think it’s fake in a lot of ways. Or at least overly scripted. For the record, I’m from WV, although not anywhere near Huntington. People in that state – and every state – could certainly eat better. But this is a rural area – I am sure many, many of these families have gardens, grow vegetables, even raise their own animals for meat. I don’t think it’s possible that in that classroom of kids, not one of them knew what a single vegetable was. I don’t buy it. And so I actually think Jamie is doing a bit of a disservice to the state, in a lot of ways, by capitalizing on that reputation that West Virginians are ignorant.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 8:47 am

      i agree, its super scripted and i find myself rolling my eyes a lot.

    • Morgan April 20, 2010, 2:12 pm

      I wish he would go to Mississippi or Alabama!

  • Jo April 20, 2010, 8:47 am

    I’m still half way through my journey in terms of health but it has become fun and informed due to blogs like yours, Kath’s and Tina’s. People who are able to show me through photos of food, and photos of them, that it is possible to lose weight and stay at a healthy weight while eating fun foods!

    Jamie Oliver did a lot for British families in terms of highlighting the need for healthy school dinners, and educating people on eating clean foods on a budget. He was on morning tv here (UK) this morning though and said he’s not been able to do as much for The US. He had a campaign in mind and not just an informative tv series.

  • Paige (Running Around Normal) April 20, 2010, 8:48 am

    Awesome post. You always come up with such great posts – which is awesome, because you post 3 times a day, and it’s not just breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
    My food revolution started when I stopped looking at food as calories, and started looking at it in terms of nutrients. Then I became more intrigued for the (third and final time) with vegetarianism. Each time the reasoning was all the same (animal love, not health-related) but the third time I actually researched it and learned how to do it the smart way. The first two times I just dove into it, thinking the only way I could eat protein was through cheese. Needless to say, my health also took a nose dive. This time, I feel better than ever, though! 🙂

  • Megan April 20, 2010, 8:50 am

    I think reading “Fast Food Nation” was one of my first wake-up calls about real food. Also, a yoga instructor loaned me “The Face on Your Plate” and although I am not a vegetarian because of animal rights, this opened my eyes to really consider what I want to put into my body.

    And wow, yes, I started eating Light N Fit yogurt when I was dieting…though that was probably a positive change at that time, I’m so glad I started reading labels! Great post 🙂

    • Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday April 20, 2010, 9:30 am

      I agree that fast food nation was really enlightening. It was so well researched and detailed and I think it’s an excellent read for everyone because you learn a lot about the meat industry that you probably never knew.

      I’m reading “in defense of food” right now and I don’t love it so far. Yes, I completely agree with what Michael Pollan says, but it’s not very detailed or well researched and a lot of people who read blogs like yours probably know everything that’s stated in it.

  • Estela @ Weekly Bite April 20, 2010, 8:50 am

    I truly believe that whole foods should be the main source of nutrition… however… I feel one should have a healthy relationship with food first and not take anything to an extreme. In my career I’ve seen way too many individuals who take the idea of whole foods to an extreme… resulting in food issues… Its all about balance and moderation.

  • Heather ( April 20, 2010, 8:52 am

    great post! I have been reading Kath’s blog for a few months now, and while I will never eat as healthy/clean as she does, I have gotten a lot better. I haven’t had fast food in months, which is a shocker for me!

  • Gracie @ Girl Meets Health April 20, 2010, 8:53 am

    My food revolution definitely started when I began reading blogs (I first found Tina’s, then Kath’s, then yours :D). Another favorite of mine is Heather Eats Almond Butter. Like you, I realized that “least amount of calories” didn’t always equal “healthiest.” The book “Good Calories, Bad Calories” by Gary Taubes has also led me to a new understanding of food. I no longer fear saturated fat, and research/studies he focuses on show that we as a country are still following certain myths about food. I’m currently reading In Defense Of Food (finally!) and absolutely loving it. He, like Taubes, is kind of revealing where we’re going so wrong when it comes to trying to be healthy. We’ve really got it backwards as a society! Myself including. I’m not working even more towards looking at food as FOOD – not nutrients.

  • Leanne April 20, 2010, 8:53 am

    All 4 of those things definitely opened my eyes up quite a bit. I’ll also add Fast Food Nation to this list. I can’t believe I used to eat fast food as a “treat food”. Yuck.

  • Erica April 20, 2010, 8:54 am

    To be perfectly honest, my food revolution started when I began reading your website! I’ve been a calorie counter since college (wanted to lose my post-21 beer gain), and even though I’m a runner and fitness junkie, I was still looking at food as the enemy. Now I see it as fuel for my workouts and my day, thanks to your perspective!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 8:54 am

      thank you 🙂 what a sweet thing to say!

  • Lacey @ Lake Life April 20, 2010, 8:54 am

    I absolutely love Food Revolution simply because it DOES appeal to the masses. It’s sad that so many people know so little about the foods they put into their bodies. Food Revolution is a great platform for people to do their own independent food research, and try new things!

  • Rachel (Suburban Yogini) April 20, 2010, 8:54 am

    My mum and dad. I grew up eating homegrown fruit and vegetables. The meat we did eat came from local farms and although it wasn’t labelled organic (we didn’t have organic in the UK in the 70s we just had food!). Mum made bread and jam and bought cheese from local farms.

    I was 13 when I turned vegetarian (after watching a lamb I had hand reared being taken off to slaughter!), and about 18 when I turned vegan. These days I eat a primarily vegan diet with a few free range eggs from a local farm, fish occassionally for balance and vegan cupcakes whenever the hell I want!!! 😀

    I have to say to say that I have hardly eaten junk food in my entire life and have never counted calories or weighed myself particularly (apart from at the doctor). And I have my mum to thank for that for teaching me what real food was from birth!

    I haven’t seen much of the US version of Food Revolution but the UK one was fantastic and had a lot more information in it than the US one seems to have. UK and US cultures are a lot different than people initially think and I suspect Jamie has come up against several blocks he perhaps wasn’t expecting in the States.

  • Claire April 20, 2010, 8:54 am

    Caitlin, I love this post! As a british mans daughter, I knew Jamie Oliver since his “Naked Chef” days…swoon…I agree about the show becoming somewhat repetitive but you can really tell he is trying with all sincerity.

    In terms of my own personal food revolution, I think that Skinny Bitch may have been the first vegan/vegetarian type book I read that really had a lot of facts that lead me to cut out meat, poultry, and fish.

    Then I stumbled upon blogs somehow…I honestly can’t remember how but it was definitely during the SEE BRIDE RUN days!

    I feel like I am constantly evolving by obtaining more info from Pollan’s books, Jonathan Safran Foers book, and all the documentaries out there these days.

    Happy Earth Week!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 8:56 am

      omg thank you for reading since see bride run!!!

    • Laura April 20, 2010, 10:21 am

      I loved See Bride Run… I got so excited for the way you were growing and for your wedding and each race. I loved the way you dealt with your honeymoon and relaxing a little on things, knowing it would all even out in the end 😉 I’d never heard of half the things you were talking about, as the U.K. is several years behind in pretty much everything…

      • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:36 am

        yay another SBR reader hehe 🙂 I thought the UK was always ahead of us!? what books do they have about these topics in the UK?

        • Heather April 20, 2010, 3:20 pm

          for the record…i started reading SBR when I was WEDDING PLANNING. it was in my “brides 2009” folder in google reader. You can’t tell me THAT’s not funny now 🙂 xoxo

        • Cindi April 21, 2010, 11:20 pm

          I’m another SBR reader! I’ve always been active, but put on a bunch of weight the past few years> Apparently when the times get tough, I EAT! So when I got engaged last year, I found SBR and thefitbride and have never looked back. I find myself making way better food choices and I love how your meals are so easy and delicious! I’m still not vegetarian (not sure I ever will be, I LOVE fish) – but definitely eat a ton more veggies and I try to only eat meat one meal each day. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Becky April 20, 2010, 8:55 am

    For me, it was “Eating Animals” by Jonathan Safran Foer. Totally revolutionized the way I eat, and it made me a vegetarian. I also was really blown away by “Animal Vegetable Miracle” when I read it about 18 months ago, and that moved me towards eating more locally whenever possible. However, I found that a lot of Kingsolver’s book was difficult to translate into something that was achievable for me in my daily life. I am now trying to encourage my in-laws and parents to eat more mindfully- and get rid of the junky Light N Fit and “50% less sugar OJ”- disgusting!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 8:56 am

      I just ordered Eating Animals YESTERDAY!!!

      • Becky April 20, 2010, 9:01 am

        I can’t wait to hear what you think of it. It was so disturbing to read (and not perfect) but really really powerful. I can’t imagine anyone reading that and then not internalizing it in some way (of course, you already abide by pretty much everything he writes!)

        • Exa April 20, 2010, 9:41 am

          Eating Animals is a fabulous book. Jonathan Safran Foer is my favorite author and I cannot recommend his two fiction works, Everything is Illuminate and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close enough. I cry and laugh every time I read one of his books.

    • Emily April 20, 2010, 10:14 am

      Animal, Vegetable, Miracle was mind blowing for me. It taught me so much about where our food comes from and how important it is to support our local food growers. I HIGHLY recommend it!

  • Heather @ Side of Sneakers April 20, 2010, 8:55 am

    I love seeing your journey & influences! I actually just wrote about this- but a big influence in my revolution was seeing my friends essentially compete about who could eat less. Drinking half a slim fast at lunch was “cool”. That inspired me to learn more about nutrition and how you could still EAT and be healthy. It’s actually what inspired me to go into the nutrition field.

  • Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat) April 20, 2010, 8:56 am

    I gained 10 pounds during the first three months I lived in Korea. I was always tired, my skin and hair were dry and dull, and I just generally felt like crap. Quickly, I realized that my diet consisted of fried pork, white rice and very few veggies. That January, I made a change. I started cooking my own veggie-rich meals and staying away from the cafeteria food that had been my staple.

    The change was immediate. My energy levels spiked, I looked better and my entire attitude improved. Since then, I’ve learned a lot about food and nutrition — went vegetarian, started exercising regularly, etc. And then I discovered this awesome blogging community and, well, I’m hooked!

  • Katie April 20, 2010, 8:58 am

    Hi Caitlin.. this is my first reply to your blog (actually pretty excited about it since I’ve known about you/your blog for awhile!)

    My Food Revolution started in college when I decided to become a Registered Dietitian. I call it a revolution because I used to have unhealthy and abusive eating habits (or lack of really) for a period of time in high school. Thanks to the help of a wonderful person in my life, at the time, I was able to overcome my personal eating struggles and start to have a good relationship with food again. I wanted to translate my triumphs and experience to others and thus sought the path of becoming an RD. Currently that’s what I’m doing and can’t wait to aid in changing people’s lives!

  • Courtney (Pancakes & Postcards) April 20, 2010, 8:58 am

    What a great post/discussion! In college, I didn´t think much about food, but I lived in LA, so it was easy to just naturally keep healthy (sushi, salads, good smoothies) so it balanced out the splurges. Then, in September 2008 I moved to Africa (Peace Corps) and instead of my crazy active and “granola” life in LA, my food options were reduced to white rice, white bread, corn meal, and potatoes, usually in fried form. Often, that was it. Of course, I gained a bunch of weight from food that wasn´t even good! It was this that prompted me to get interested in nutrition and healthy living.

    I spent a lot of time online and found Carrots ´n Cake and subsequently your blog. Although I cannot buy or access two-thirds (or probably more) of the food you all eat, it motivated me to take a more healthy and holistic approach to life: do all I can to eat healthy and eat REAL FOOD, but also recognize that I am living in Africa where I can´t get whole grain anything, so I might have a couple extra pounds on me–but that those will leave (I hope!) when I move back to CA and until then I should enjoy my experience here and stop freaking out about a couple of pounds.

    Pollan did a lot for me too. I am not vegetarian but am now committed to grass-fed and humanely farmed meat. Also, have you read “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” by Barbara Kingsolver? It is about her family (living on a farm in Virginia) committing to eating nearly 100% locally for a YEAR. It talks about sustainable farming and the importance of local food and is an amazing book that I think you (and anyone reading this) would totally love. Totally motivated me to eat local–you don´t normally think about what your banana had to do to get to your oatmeal bowl in the morning, and the cost to the planet! I am not ready to give up bananas yet, but it is really informative and eye-opening.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:37 am

      i havent read AVM but i hear its sooo good.

  • Wei-Wei April 20, 2010, 8:59 am

    I’m ashamed to say that my Food Revolution started the same time my eating disorder did… I’m currently (trying) to recover from anorexia, but during the time I was sick, I was completely obsessed with food and nutrition (read: calories), but as I started to realize that it wasn’t making me happy, I started to notice and take into heart the nutritional value, not just the calories, of things I was eating.

    When I was recovering, I had to gain weight. I started at first by half-binging my way through un-filling, un-nutritious sweets – just because I could. Then I realized that there were other foods that I could eat to gain weight that were a lot more nutritious than cake and biscuits… So I resolved to eat healthier to make myself feel good.

    Sadly, it’s still a work-in-progress; I live in China and I don’t know where to get copies of books like Intuitive Eating, which I DESPERATELY need, because I still don’t know what my body needs… It’s a little sad, really, to realize how much I’ve lost “communication” with what’s supposed to be my best friend for life – my body.

    I once skimmed through Skinny Bitch in a bookstore; I don’t think I read it very carefully though, since I don’t remember learning much about veganism and vegetarianism from it (I think I was attracted to it because I expected calorie counts and military-style extreme diets – something very attractive to an eating-disordered person) but I hope to pick it up again and read it seriously!

    I love your blog – you’re such an inspiration!


    • Molly @fuelherup April 20, 2010, 9:33 am

      I was in the same boat. I actually think part of my eating disorder was my distorted thought was that the skinnier I was, the healthier I was.

      One thing my nutritionist did say (I was vegetarian at the time) was NOT to read Skinny BItch. I read it a year after the end of my recovery and I mentioned that I had read it while in recovery/pre-recovery, it would have made me associate even more guilt with food. I seriously recommend, if reading it at all, waiting until you’re well out of the recovery stage.

      • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:38 am

        yea i would not recommended skinny bitch for someone with an ED (i think i ever say that in my review of the book). it’s very harsh and kind of triggering. as i said, there are a lot of cons to the book, but its still eye opening.

        i wish you the best on your journey weiwei!

        • Wei-Wei April 20, 2010, 9:39 pm

          Thanks so much Caitlin! I would agree that I would probably wait a while longer into my recovery to read Skinny Bitch… or not at all. Do you have any other sources of information on vegetarianism/veganism?

          My mom doesn’t agree with vegetarianism. Especially since with a recovering body, she believes that I wouldn’t be able to get enough nutrients… and my doctor also recommends more protein (“warm” foods in Chinese Medicine, like beef), but I would like to know how to incorporate more of the benefits from a vegetarian diet into my diet. 🙂

          I love how the blogworld is so supportive all the time. 😀


  • Neely April 20, 2010, 8:59 am

    I still struggle every day, but general literature on the topics of farming, food production, etc. is what initially sparked my shift toward a “revolution.”

    That said… I refuse to take advice from someone who names their kids Poppy Honey, Daisy Boo and Petal Blossom Rainbow.


    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:39 am

      haha hippies are cool.

  • Melissa April 20, 2010, 9:01 am

    Great post 🙂

  • Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg April 20, 2010, 9:01 am

    The Omnivore’s Dilemna was a big one for me in turning more towards whole foods, as well as French Women Don’t Get Fat. Food Inc. is largely what promted my move to vegetarianism, although I’d already been thinking about it.

    Have you ever seen the movie Earthlings? I can’t even make it through the trailer, and I think it would be hard to not go vegan after watching it, but I just don’t think I’m prepared to do that, mentally.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:39 am

      i watched the trailer and actually gagged into the toilet!

      • Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg April 20, 2010, 11:53 am

        I know, isn’t it awful? I cried when I saw it…and I literally only made it through about 20 seconds before I had to turn it off. That movie is difficult for me, because on the one hand, I know it would be absolutely eye-opening and life-changing…but on the other hand, seeing all of that footage would, no doubt, scar me for life. I feel like it’s just too much for my emotions to handle.

        • Morgan April 20, 2010, 2:18 pm

          Ok, I tried to watch. I couldn’t get past the cows. Oh dear. This type of documentary makes me want to run away to a far away place and take all the animals with me. Humans are sick, sick people.
          However, it does have the word Epic in the opening. ha!

        • Julie @savvyeats April 20, 2010, 2:45 pm

          20 seconds is about how far I made it, too!

  • Joanne April 20, 2010, 9:01 am

    Like you, reading informative books and articles on food and nutrition. The facts presented made me aware that it’s not all in the calories (which translates to energy) but in the fat, carbs, protein and other nutrients that we need to look at when evaluating food for our bodies.

    I just posted a blurt about a great food philosophy from Canyon Ranch Cooks cook book. I love the philospohy and the recipes. It’s all about enjoying food an eating intelligently.

  • katiek April 20, 2010, 9:03 am

    Great resources! Food INC. will be on PBS Wednesday 4/21 at 9pm ET. I have yet to see it so needless to say I have a date night tomorrow with my tv and couch!!

  • Nicole of Raspberry Stethoscope April 20, 2010, 9:03 am

    Mine definitely started with just reading different books on food, and a few years ago picking up The Omnivore’s Dilemma at the library.

  • Anne P April 20, 2010, 9:05 am

    What an awesome post. This is why I love your blog – you write beautifully, you take the time to come up with and research interesting topics for posts, and you obviously write for your readers, not just yourself! I love that you encourage others to think and talk about important and sometimes controversial issues.

    Anyway! That trailer totally made me tear up, ha! I wish I had a TV just so I could see that show… must find it online. My “Food Revolution” came from reading food blogs for sure. I was the same – Light and Fit yogurt, processed stuff, etc. It was such an eye opener to me that I didn’t have to eat that way and food could be fun and different! Being healthy didn’t mean having plain grilled chicken every night with lame steamed veggies?! Crazy! 🙂

  • Lauren April 20, 2010, 9:05 am

    Mine almost follows yours to a “T” except I found Fitnessista and Oh She Glows first, then read Michael Pollan’s Food Rules, then watched Food Inc. And I too was floored. It makes so much sense, and it so much easier than putting numbers on everything that enters your mouth. So liberating!

  • Caroline April 20, 2010, 9:05 am

    I’m loving Food Revolution, though I wish he’d check in with the family again. This week is the last episode, though. I imagine he’ll get the funding and all will be happy but Alice. Michael Pollan has definitely been my biggest influence.
    Food, Inc is showing on PBS this evening too, if you feel the need to refresh your memory 🙂

  • rachael April 20, 2010, 9:08 am

    I have always been uncomfortable eating flesh, and stopped eating meat when I was 12 (my parents were convinced it was a phase but I stuck with it). I was a pretty unhealthy vegetarian for a while. When I was in high school I read Diet for a New America, which was pretty life changing. In college I read Becoming Vegan by Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina, which really sparked my interest in nutrition.

    Some other “food revolutiony” books that I have enjoyed are Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver and The Blue Zones (which I highly recommend to you and your hubby- I work in the natural health field and think your soon to be alternative doctor would enjoy it).

  • Anne @ Your Kind of Salad April 20, 2010, 9:14 am

    Great note about Food Revolution – I was catching up on hulu episodes of the show on Saturday (and mentioned it on my blog) – I found it alarming how much people were in the mindset of “it doesn’t matter if its disgusting or unhealthy – if its in the manual, we have to do it” – which definitely speaks to the overall problems of food industrialization/organization versus one school (or even town’s) actual meals served.

    My own food revolution came about 8 years ago when I started following a new weight-loss plan that emphasized ingredients, not labels – haven’t looked back since!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:41 am

      oh yea, i love red tape in the government. so mindless.

  • Carolyn @ lovinlosing April 20, 2010, 9:15 am

    I would say I’m still working on my food revolution. I’m trying to stand by the motto, “Everything in Moderation.” I don’t plan on becoming vegetarian, but I would like to get my meat more locally. Maybe I can stock up at the farmer’s markets this summer.

  • Angela @ A Healthy Fit April 20, 2010, 9:21 am

    My “food revolution” was sparked by The China Study and then reinforced by skinny bitch. Although I am not vegan, I have dramatically reduced my intake of animal products.

  • Emmanuelle April 20, 2010, 9:23 am

    Wow this is a life story. I suffered from binge eating when I was around 20, and somehow I got out of it on my own, for years afterwards I was just happy to eat whatever I wanted and to stop without thinking when I was full, not really paying attention to what I was eating.

    I can’t really tell when my real food revolution started, but I remember how it did: it was a few years ago, I remember randomly looking at my fingernails and realizing I had a lot of thin white lines. I thought I must be lacking in the vitamins department, and started to review my eating habits. And I decided to cut back on junk food and incorporate more veggies.
    I also thought “hey, why not start to move my butt a little, it’s getting wobbly in some areas”.
    So working out and cleaner eats came hand in hand really.

    Then l realized I was eating less and less meat, loading up plates of veggies didn’t leave much room for a huge piece of steak 😉 So beginning of last year, I considered going vegetarian. I started researching the net so as not to do anything stupid, and that’s when I started reading healthy living / food / vegetarian-vegan blogs, not to mention the activist sites such as Peta’s. Of course, you have to take the information with a grain of salt, but all in all it reinforced me in my decision.

    Just like you, I am not the perfect clean ethical eater, but I do believe that, even though I sometimes feel guilty about it ;-); some junk food or indulging once in a while is ok, as long as you eat whole foods, lots of veggies, on a regular basis. And I don’t restrict, my body naturally craves veggies and healthy food after one muffin too many 😉

  • Amanda April 20, 2010, 9:26 am

    What sparked my “food revolution” was alot of the same things that sparked yours, especially Food Inc. I do probably think more about calories than you do, but I think thats natural after spending the last year losing 115 pounds. I think its ingrained in me at this point to be calorie conscious. I try to live by the Michael Pollan quote you mentioned “Eat food, not too much, mostly plants”. Absolute genious!

  • Courtney April 20, 2010, 9:31 am

    That show really bothers me. I watched the first two episodes and had to stop because I can’t believe that people are so resistant to someone trying to improve their child’s quality of life. I do think that they should be providing more education to the parents and the children about what unhealthy eating can do and the cost of the chronic diseases that result from obesity. I noticed he is going to individual homes to teach but I think it should be more of a public broadcast.
    The biggest shock to me was not the pizza for breakfast but the fact that they thought French fries were vegetables. Ok, maybe they are made from a potato (a starch), but with all the other crap they put in there it no longer gets vegetable credit in my mind.

  • Therese April 20, 2010, 9:32 am

    Awesome recommendations! I started watching Food Revolution but I don’t watch much TV so I’ve missed most of the episodes but love what he’s trying to do SO MUCH!

    My food revolution occurred when I came back to Canada from living in Japan for 15 months teaching English. I immediately began to feel the effects of eating more processed food, my body had gotten used to the fresh food in Japan that it hit me like a ton of bricks. But I also realized that I didn’t WANT to get used to the crap food again and that started the baby ball rolling. Slowly I started cutting out the processed food and the following spring I made the leap to eating no meat but still fish. About two years later I saw the documentary Sharkwater about shark finning and I was so disgusted by it that I stopped eating fish the next day.

    I started to lose a lot of weight and started paying attention to what I was eating and really, it’s just been a gradual process. I’m not perfect, I love pizza and nachos but I eat a much more wholesome and ethical diet than I used to!

  • Amy @ Second City Randomness April 20, 2010, 9:35 am

    I read skinny bitch first and loved it! Actually couldn’t get through the part about the meat industry- oh chapter 3, I still remember you! And I’m not vegan, but I love some of the points they make in the book!

    And I just finished Michael Pollan a month or so ago. Loved his writing style and how he gave me some “oh duh- that makes sense” moments!

  • D April 20, 2010, 9:36 am

    my parents were always relatively health-conscious, so i always had “weird” healthy habits from a young age. we only had brown rice, i baked with spelt flour, i took soy milk cartons to school, and a “treat” meal was whole foods hot bar. but my personal food revolution was inspired by the china study, which is when i switched to a totally vegan diet and eliminated anything processed. reading blogs introduced me to fun new foods, and i still look at them for inspiration and to see new ideas of what to buy at the store, but the china study honestly changed my life.

    i think the show is awesome, but it’s nothing new. i feel like people already know that information, they just dont want to change. people shouldnt still need to be told that junk food is bad for their kids, and if you dont intuitively know that pink milk is unhealthy then i think it’s a lost cause. i feel like the problem goes a lot deeper, and that its psychological too. people want the easy way out, and the food revolution doesnt offer that. if it were as easy as spouting off facts and statistics, and showing gross demonstrations, then the problem would have been solved a long time ago.

    • Morgan April 20, 2010, 2:21 pm

      “…people shouldnt still need to be told that junk food is bad for their kids, and if you dont intuitively know that pink milk is unhealthy then i think it’s a lost cause. i feel like the problem goes a lot deeper, and that its psychological too. people want the easy way out, and the food revolution doesnt offer that.”

      Totally, 100% agree.

  • Exa April 20, 2010, 9:36 am

    I have been a vegetarian for a little over fifteen years (fifteen years and a month to be exact, since I was 10). Therefore, I would say that my parents, who never have been avid meat eaters and own and cook from several of the Moosewood Cookbooks, were the first contributors to my food revolution. But despite being a vegetarian for so long, I haven’t always had the best relationship with food. Although I was never a “candy+cereal+fake meat” vegetarian, my love of vegetables and fruits was also a convenient cover for an eating disorder. Then, when I was in college and trying to overcome said problems, I became more of a beer and ice cream vegetarian on the weekends while eschewing anything with fat during the week.
    I would say that my real revolution came about four years ago when I graduated from college and started cooking for myself. Starting with several Moosewood cookbooks, I learned how to make good, delicious wholesome vegetarian food from scratch. I started eating nut butters and avocado because recipes called for them! I felt liberated. At the same time, I had begun to explore the reasons why I was a vegetarian and educate myself about the practices of the meat and dairy industries. I stopped drinking milk, switching first to soy, then to almond (because I don’t personally want that much soy in my life), cut out most cheese, and tried to give up eggs. At the same time, I focused on eating “real food,” and blogs like Kath’s, the first I read, helped inspire me to do so. That and cooking, cooking, cooking.
    My favorite fiction author, Jonathan Safran Foer, published a nonfiction book, Eating Animals, a work exploring his personal decision to stay a vegetarian and raise his child as such. While I didn’t find this book revolutionary for my personal eating habits, it did encourage me to be proud of my desire to raise my future children as vegetarians.
    As far as Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution goes, I think it is fabulous. As much as I would like to see him tackle bigger issues, and as strongly as I believe that people are much more intelligent than they are generally given credit for, there is something to be said for emphasizing the same, basic points until they become no-brainers. I was raised in Massachusetts and lived in Chicago, IL for two years, but I recently moved to Oklahoma where my boyfriend is pursuing his PhD. While I have met many kind and wonderful people while down here, I have also had a chance to step outside of my bubble and see that a lot of people aren’t aware of what, exactly, is on their plates. I think that the Food Revolution is designed as a stepping stone for a lot of everyday people–for the parents I see bringing their kids Sonic at school, as if that is better than the nachos they eat at the cafeteria. For the kids that eat the cafeteria food, because they have no choice. Unfortunately, I think Food Revolution’s main audience is those who don’t need it–people like us, who want Jaime to go farther.
    That turned in to a novel. My apologies.

    • Exa April 20, 2010, 9:39 am

      Also, I wanted to add that people in Oklahoma are not especially ignorant or unhealthy, and that not all people in MA are super healthy and wise. I hope it didn’t come across that way. I grew up in a town that intentionally banned many fast food restaurants from the area, so I experience shell-shock for that reason. But OK is awesome!

      • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:43 am

        what a good comment. i just ordered eating animals!

  • lauren @ Eater not a runner April 20, 2010, 9:38 am

    Michael Pollan’s books were a HUGE eye opener for me. I read all of them one after another! Also “Real Food” by Nina Planck. If you haven’t checked it out, I highly recommend it!

  • Kathleen April 20, 2010, 9:38 am

    I dvr Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution. I just wonder if he will have an impact on the other school’s across the country. I have been reading Kath’s blog for the last 2 years. Love Michael Pollan’s book! Have not read Skinny Bitch. What sparked me was a combination of turning 40 and the doctor saying there was a problem with my thyroid and I might have to take medication the rest of my life. I decided to turn it around myself. I changed my diet and it is now high but I don’t have to take meds. This opened my eyes to what I was putting into my body and I went from there.

  • Kelly @ Healthy Living With Kelly April 20, 2010, 9:40 am

    Thankfully I haven’t ever had a “food revolution” because my parents were freaking AWESOME and did a great job on raising me and my brother one fresh foods, lots of fish, organic foods, etc. We never ate fast food and to this day neither me nor my brother want or crave it. We had lots of desserts that centered around seasonal fruit and my parents taught us the value of healthy lifestyles through example. I never remember talking about it or discussing it. We just learned by seeing and doing what my parents did.

  • Gwen April 20, 2010, 9:41 am

    My food revolution was sparked by a picture of me – 323 pounds – between my two skinniest friends. I knew then and continue to know that I never wanted to be as skinny as they are, but that if I didn’t do something, I would weigh 500 pounds by the time I was 30. EASILY. I have taken the control over my choices in a positive direction. I still eat processed foods and enjoy treats, but I know this is a lifestyle I can sustain for the rest of my life. Which will be long, and healthy!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:43 am

      you are awesome, gwen! rock out!

  • Stina @ Girl Can April 20, 2010, 9:43 am

    Honestly, I’ve been putting off watching Food, Inc for months because I’m terrified of what I’m going to learn.

    I tried reading The Omnivore’s Dilema, and I found it incredibly dense and difficult to get through. Have you read this? Is In Defense of Food dense? I’ve been wanting to read it, but I havne’t picked it up yet because I’ve been concerned about it’s “denseness.”

    I did read Skinny Bitch. While, I thought there was a lot of good information in the book, there were a number of things that turned me off. I think the turn-offs (like the authors’ tone which struck me as diva-like) really overpowered the impact the book could have had on me.

    I guess I’m in the midst of my own personal food revolution. I’ve cut back on the amount of meat I eat, and I’ve definitely increased the about of wholesome foods I consume, but old habits die hard sometimes. This has primarily been the result of finding healthy living blogs like you, Kath, Angela, and Tina. I think I’m still waiting for my real “ah-ha!” moment though. Maybe it’s time I suck it up and watch Food, Inc.

    • Carrie @ I See Monsters April 20, 2010, 10:34 am

      In Defense of Food is sort of like the Cliff Notes version of The Omnivore’s Dilemma, in my opinion. I read IDOF first (which I LOVED and sparked my quest to cut out processed foods as much as possible) and when I went back to read Omnivore’s I thought it covered a lot of the same material, just in more detail.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:44 am

      I only got halfway through Omnivore’s Dilemma and never finished it. I tore through In Defense of Food. It’s much BETTER.

  • brandi April 20, 2010, 9:45 am

    I love the IDEA of the Food Revolution, and I know that he has done some amazing things in the UK with the school systems and the food they serve.

    But I live right across the border from WV, and while I do agree that this area of the country has a high incidence of obesity, there’s no way I believe that those kids on the first episode didn’t know what a tomato was. Maybe they scripted it that way? I don’t know. But almost every family I know here has a garden in their own yard OR has other family with a garden. It’s a way of life here; you grow your own “veg”, as Jamie says. People still can and preserve their harvest – it’s just what you do.

    Either way – I hope that changes can come from his show because I know how bad some of that school food is and I would love to see the kids in my neighborhood eating better and feeling better.

  • Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter April 20, 2010, 9:50 am

    Thank you for all of the must-reads! I’ve been searching for some great books to read. I’m glad to know what is recommended.

    I believe Jamie is doing the right step, but people do really need to take accountability for what they put into their (and their kids’) mouths. Maybe we should just force everyone to read In the Defense of Food? 😉

    • Freya @ Brit Chick Runs April 20, 2010, 10:12 am

      That’s so true- people are so inclined to blame everyone else. Like, ‘it’s the McDonald’s that makes my kids fat’, which is ridiculous; someone has to take them there and pay! I think what Jamie is doing is super; at least he’s trying to get them when they’re young and impressionable 😛

      • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:44 am

        i agree with both of you. the responsibility ends with the parents.

  • katie April 20, 2010, 9:51 am

    This is a great post!

    My journey towards clean(er) eating is very similar to yours. Last May I discovered The Fitnessista’s blog. Her blog introduced me to a whole world of new foods (green smoothies, nutritional yeast) and I started cutting out processed junk and “diet foods.” I also started working out “with a plan” instead of just going in and doing whatever I felt like.

    Then I read Skinny Bitch which (like you) pretty much eliminated meat from my diet. I’ve also cut out all dairy when I eat at home. (I have some when we eat out because I’ve learned that in my smallish town, it is just too hard to find something at a restaurant without meat or dairy!) I disagree with some of the mentality of SB. Especially the line “If you eat sh!t, you are sh!t.” I’m not perfect; I’m going to eat junk at some point in the future and I shouldn’t make myself feel horrible because of it.

    I later saw Food Inc. which I loved! It changed the way I think and the way I grocery shop! I used to think that the only reason to buy organic/free range/cage free was for the health benefits for the consumer. I now buy organic to support the producer and the workers and for the personal benefits.

    I do love Food Revolution but I agree with you that it has gotten a little repetitive and I hate that it is so scripted. I want to see the real, raw responses and reactions of the people in Huntington! Also, I really want Jamie to come on over to VA. Last week I was in the grocery store and the little high school checker asked me what zucchini and asparagus were. Then she held up tomatoes and said, “These are, like, tomatoes, right?” Oh geez…

  • Danielle (Coffee Run) April 20, 2010, 9:51 am

    I love Food Revolution! (Mainly because I think Jamie Oliver is cute haha)

    The first food blog I ever found was Carrots ‘N Cake and I too was just fascinated that someone was healthy and eating REAL peanut butter and not just a small salad for lunch. Seriously, I think food blogs may have brought me out of my “fat free/low cal” phase a couple years ago 😀

    • Freya @ Brit Chick Runs April 20, 2010, 10:10 am

      It seems food blogs have made that switch from low cal crap to proper real food for so many people! I wish they were more widely recognized, they could help SO many dieters out there.

  • Jessica @ How Sweet April 20, 2010, 9:54 am

    Mine started when I was young – probably 16 or 17, before I even knew what a blog was. I was always criticized my weight, and started to exercise to gain confidence. Shortly afterwards, I realized that eating certain foods made me feel better physically and mentally. It wasn’t a certain event, but more so a few years of self-realization.

  • Lindsay @ The Ketchup Diaries April 20, 2010, 9:54 am

    My food revolution also started with Kath when I found her on From there, I was able to find other blogs (like yours!), which recently inspired me to start my own. I’ve never been son happy and finally feel FREE of all the diet hogwash. It’s so freeing!

  • Catherine April 20, 2010, 9:54 am

    I guess my food revolution started with the seeds my parents planted when I was young – healthful food, exercise, etc. I wasn’t very healthy through highschool, but in college I wanted to get back to my athletic self so I started practicing the things I learned growing up – cutting out processed food, etc.

    Now I’ve continued my search for information through food blogs, books like Eating Animals, movies like Food, Inc. and at this point in time I am a vegetarian, marathoner (just finished Boston- yay!) and feel better than ever. 🙂

    • Freya @ Brit Chick Runs April 20, 2010, 10:08 am

      Big congrats on Boston!! Well done 🙂

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:45 am

      yay for boston!

  • Sarah April 20, 2010, 9:57 am

    I slept pretty poorly myself last night. Luckily, I was able to get in a 75-minute yoga home practice. And a cup of coffee. Now I’m feeling pretty good!

    I’ve been enjoying Food Revolution, although by the 4th episode, I think I’m done with it, too. But Food, Inc? I have yet to see that. I’m glad you mentioned it!

  • Christina April 20, 2010, 9:57 am

    Food blogs definitely sparked my food revolution. And since then, I branched out to other forms. Most recently, Alicia Silverstone’s Kind Diet really hit me hard. I just started In Defense of Food. Now I’m even more excited to read it!

  • Laura April 20, 2010, 9:59 am

    Off on a tangent (as per usual!), I would say your blog, and those of your friends, and the way in which you show that people, just like me, who weren’t trained athletes from before the age of ten (aka my sister!) can become amazing athletes, achieving- but most importantly enjoying being really active. Also showing us how to go about it, and the ups and downs behind the scenes! I seem to have grown up with a ‘I can’t do this’ mentality because I was always way behind my sister (and my Dad), not training with Paula Radcliffe etc- so I’ve just avoided running and, indeed many other things in life that my sister excels in. Neurotic, I’m sure it sounds, but you’ve helped me become slightly more moderate in my fears of being ‘substandard’, although I still can’t quite put my running shoes on again! WHEN I do, it will be for me, and for my favourite charity, and I’ll try not to feel comparisons! I’d be really interested to see Jamie’s series in the U.S.- it was really good when he did it here in the U.K- he had this hilarious battle with a cockney dinnerlady!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:47 am

      yay! im glad i helped you realize that everyday people can train themselves to do extraordinary things! we can do it!

  • Laura April 20, 2010, 10:03 am

    P.S. I wish you and the whole healthy living blogosphere was around when I was in my awkward/being bullied mid-late teens (I’m a couple of months older than you!), it would have helped me with so many years of low self confidence + unnecessary dieting!

    • Laura April 20, 2010, 10:12 am

      Oh (and after this I really will go back to studying!) I think I owe an awful lot of needing to be just generally active and eat ‘healthily’ to my Mum- if she hadn’t raised me the way she had I- wouldn’t know how to cook -have acquired the tastes I have, and having exercise as a normal part of daily life and -have a hopefully balanced knowledge of foods/nutrition/processing. Which is why I think you will make a great Mum/Mom (he he!) and why I think its great that Jamie is targeting kiddies at a young age. Signing off now 😉

  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing April 20, 2010, 10:04 am

    Like I said above, I found Kath’s blog through Self. And then yours and Carrots N Cake. Completely changed my life. I went from counting calories and eating lots of fake diet foods to focusing on whole foods and treating my body right.

    As for Food Revolution, I like the idea of it but I think there is still a ways to go. The thing is, changing cafeteria food is not going to completely stop childhood obesity. At the school I work in, there are many children who are extremely obese. There is one child in particular that breaks my heart, she is so overweight that she gets out of breath just by walking. The other kids make fun of her. She hates playing in the gym because it’s SO hard for her and the other kids won’t play with her. But the thing is, her entire family is obese. She doesn’t even eat cafeteria food, she brings food from home! So while the show has good intentions, there is still a LONG way to go.

  • Katie April 20, 2010, 10:06 am

    I never thought I had a food revolution or needed one- I am a vegetarian (no dairy but I do rarely have some local eggs), no processed foods, no artificial sweetners, no junk. I never had any agenda behind it. This is just how I eat and always have. It’s always been pretty simple, but I don’t judge others (or ever really think about it) for their food choices.

    A few months ago my husband and I were out with friends when I was recommending a restaraunt out of town to my girlfriend. I said as a side comment that I couldn’t remember if it was completely vegetarian or had meat options. The husband went insane. He said he once went to a place to look at the menu where nothing on it had ever taken a “sh**t”. He wouldn’t let it go, and was completeley offended that I would recommend a potentially vegetarian place for them to eat.

    I was stunned to say the least. I now feel that my personal eating has an agenda, and I want to help the issue of ethical treatment of animals.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:48 am

      wow… that is ridiculous.

  • Lisa @ Early Morning Run April 20, 2010, 10:07 am

    I haven’t read skinny bitch yet, but I do read your blog and kath’s every day and Michael Pollan, then Food, Inc. changed my life. I look at food completely differently now and try to educate others whenever I can. It only takes a few people, who teach a few others, to start a revolution. I think it has started, but it’s such a huge problem that it’s not going to be fixed overnight and there will always be holdouts. Still, we can only do our best and do what’s right for us!

  • Julie April 20, 2010, 10:09 am

    My revolution came after I removed gluten from my diet. I was eating horribly before literally I was going through boxes of cereal. I had an addiction! So I went gluten free to cure my tummy troubles and began to read about what my body really needed: whole foods. I would say I’ve always had an interest in healthy eating but followed the “low fat” thing forever, with total disregard to the long ingredient list attached to these low fat foods.

    Last year, I stumbled upon food blogs after looking up turkey burgers, I think. The very first blog I came across was Healthy Ashleys! 🙂 By this time, I had already done my research and was eating good food for the most part, but of course reading food blogs gives me ideas and also teaches me things too! I just love your blog. I love your healthy attitude toward food, exercise, and having fun. I now read a lot of running blogs to help give me motivation. I love reading about other people’s races!!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:48 am

      thank you so much 🙂

  • Lori K. April 20, 2010, 10:09 am

    I guess I am just starting out on my “food revolution.” Once I saw the scale starting to creep somewhere I wasn’t comfortable with I decided to take action, watching what I eat and adding in exercise. The first blog I found was Roni’s Weigh, I was googling about trying to like oatmeal and it brought me to her site. From there I have found many other blogs (including yours) that are helping me to grasp a better way of eating and feeding my family. My 7 year-old isn’t quite as receptive as I would like and the husband can be a little reluctant on the veggie front, but we are working daily to make “healthy food choices” as we call them. Thank you Caitlin and all the other blogs I read for helping us on our journey.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:49 am

      i love roni 🙂

  • Beth @ DiningAndDishing April 20, 2010, 10:11 am

    Kath’s blog kind of started it for me too! My parents eat very healthy, but I also think my mum is a bit toooo focused on being low cal (her dr. recently told her she was underweight). so while to some extent I followed their example, Kath’s blog showed me that eating REAL food is crucial to optimal health! Also the book French Women Don’t Get Fat was a real eye opener for me. I realized taking pleasure in small portions of real food was much better than cramming down a giant portion of “diet food” on the go!

  • Laura April 20, 2010, 10:11 am

    I have to be very honest – I’m afraid to watch Food Inc and read Skinny Bitch because I don’t want meat to be ruined for me. It’s not that I don’t want to be educated on the subject matter, because I really do – but it’s that I’m afraid I’ll learn some things I just don’t really want to know.

    I’ll admit, before I became health concious I ate meat at probably every meal of my day. And it was prepared in the healthy way. Now that I am concious, I eat meat at least once a day – most days. I definitely have my days without any meat though and I very much enjoy them. But when I want meat, I have it and I enjoy it and I don’t think about anything other than the nutritional values and the preparation methods. I don’t buy grass fed or organic meats, and while I know they are superior – I just don’t put too much thought into it. Maybe I should.. or maybe it’s okay not to. I’m not sure which answer is right for me yet.

    I am more inclined to read Pollan’s books after reading so many wonderful things about them, but I’m just not sure I can handle Food Inc or Skinny Bitch yet. Anyones input to try to sway me otherwise is welcome!

    • Sarah for Real April 20, 2010, 10:37 am

      I’m a meat eater and have read and watched many of the “scary” movies and books about meat. I won’t read Skinny Bitch because I think it comes from a negative place, and I like positive and informative.

      Try Real Food by Nina Planck. She does get up on her soap box occasionally (like they ALL do) but she talks about eating grass-fed, humanely treated animal products as a very good thing! (I commented more below.)

      • Stina @ Girl Can April 20, 2010, 11:09 am

        Skinny Bitch does come from a negative place. I think that’s actually the perfect way to sum up why I didn’t like the book.

    • Carrie @ I See Monsters April 20, 2010, 10:45 am

      Another book that is an interesting read for someone who still wants to eat meat (and it won’t scare the pants off of you, LOL) is Real Food by Nina Planck. She’s all for eating meat — she just stresses the TYPE of meat you should eat. It’s a decent read.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:50 am

      Food Inc is really NOT pro-vegetarian at all. It’s a good movie to watch if you want to learn how to still eat meat and make more responsible choices, truly.

      • Laura April 20, 2010, 11:56 am

        That makes me feel slightly better. I think I will read bloggers reviews of the movie first to see if it is something I want to watch.

        Thanks for this blog! It has been very thought provoking for me today!

      • Kandi April 20, 2010, 1:25 pm

        I agree. I watched Food Inc. and it did NOT convince me to become a vegetarian. It convinced me to be selective and to choose high quality-ANYTHING you put in your mouth (including meat).

        You’ll find that one person can gleam one point from a book, while another person can gleam another. I personally didn’t find Skinny Bitch offensive. I saw it as two vegetarians trying to “sell” the lifestyle the way they thought could get to most young “dying to be thin” women. You can be thin, but not at your health’s expense. So they gave women trying to starve themselves a few more options of what to put on their plate and still fill sexy and clean inside. The book is actually kinda jedi-mind trick-ish. LOL

    • Eunice April 20, 2010, 3:34 pm

      Laura, you took the words right out of my mouth. I am not vegetarian, but I am interested in learning how to make more responsible choices. I’ve been putting off seeing Food Inc, but I think I will make some time for it this weekend. 🙂

  • Laura@FindingAHealthyBalance....after a 100+ Pound weight loss!!! April 20, 2010, 10:12 am

    My spark began after years of DIETING, in which I tried every diet there was…….yes I lost weight but then I gained it back again! Finally, I realized that I needed to change my “eating habits” entirely and NOT DIET, that I needed to eat healthy most of the time and what I wanted in moderation, etc. Over time I started to learn more and more about food and its benefits and was hooked ever since.

    Thank you for all the great links! =)

  • Robyn April 20, 2010, 10:14 am

    I actually interviewed Jamie Oliver for Food Revolution and love what he’s doing but agree the show is getting a bit repetitive and also seems like such a big cause to try to take on all at once. I read Skinny Bitch and it freaked me out but felt so hardcore that instead of trying one or two things from the book I gave up completely. I’m going to check out Kath’s site though and I love yours (obvs).

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:50 am

      is jamie totally dreamy in real life?!

  • Kellie@obsessivelyhealthy April 20, 2010, 10:18 am

    When I started losing weight I was eating so much processed food. Yes, I was losing, but I knew that all of the processed food I was eating was not good for my body. I decided to start eating whole foods and my body started feeling better, my skin cleared up and I felt great. I am in no way a perfect eater, but it amazes my how much better I feel when I try to be.

  • Matt April 20, 2010, 10:20 am

    Lol my food revolution started when I got fat 😉

  • Rachel April 20, 2010, 10:21 am

    I must check out this show! This is the second time I’m hearing about it.

    Things that revolutionized my food world:

    -Food Blogs (yours especially! You introduced me back into the wonderful world of oatmeal. It tastes a lot better when you actually put something on it besides sugar free syrup)

    -Skinny Bitch-I read this in a span of a couple of hours as well.

    -Food Inc.

    -Super Size Me – Morgan Spurlock spoke at my school last year! He autographed my DVD!!

    -Weight Watchers – I lost 40lbs following this program. I think is great for people that want to start getting healthy – but now I am more interested in wholesome good-for-you foods and not “what is the biggest amount I can eat for 2 points”

  • Erin April 20, 2010, 10:22 am

    I read Skinny Bitch in one sitting a couple of years ago, and I haven’t eaten meat since. It had a HUGE impact on me. Since then, it’s been a snowball effect – everything I learn makes me want to learn more, and each new thing has a positive impact on my life.
    I agree that Jamie is a bit repetitive but I think for a mass audience it is probably the best they can do. Gotta make some drama or no one will watch it, right? Plus I agree that he’s adorable 😉

  • Sarah for Real April 20, 2010, 10:23 am

    I skimmed the comments but I don’t think I heard anyone mention Real Food by Nina Planck.

    That might be because this is primarily a crowd of vegetarians, but Real Food is about how we USED to eat (like traditional societies). She writes about how nutritious plant AND animal products are when they are farmed and raised traditionally. That means grass-fed or pastured (and happy!) animals.

    My revolution became complete when I switched to RAW MILK recently. I used to be a conventional non-fat milk kinda gal until I read about the nutritional and ethical differences.

    • Carrie @ I See Monsters April 20, 2010, 10:50 am

      I commented on this book as well upthread (before getting to your post) at the same time you did! I don’t love the tone of this book sometimes, but I think it’s a decent read for people who want to keep all types of animal products in their diet.

      I am lactose intolerant and was interested in trying raw milk to see if I could digest it (as the book suggests) but in my area it is like $5 for a half gallon, and about the same for a pint of raw milk yogurt. Unfortunately, that is just a bit out of my price range. 🙁

      • Sarah for Real April 20, 2010, 11:07 am

        I know, my raw milk was $7.50 for a half-gallon. However, there is literally ONE place in my area that does the raw milk thing, and I love supporting her. I’d much rather give her my hard earned dollars than some major dairy hundreds of miles away that mistreats the cows 🙁

        Just saying, that’s my perspective. I know it’s just not possible for many people. I think it is a fair price for the product, and honestly I wouldn’t feel good about buying cheap raw milk anyway, haha. Food poisoning anyone?

        • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:51 am

          haha raw milk is something i would spring the extra $$ for!

        • Katherine April 20, 2010, 2:54 pm

          I urge you to educate yourself before choosing raw milk because it is certainly not without risk (no matter how much it costs!). Here’s one of many reputable websites (there are many out there with an agenda) to get some information:

          It’s a personal choice, of course, but it’s not a risk I’m willing to take!

    • Sarah for Real April 20, 2010, 4:10 pm

      Thanks for saying that Katherine for those who don’t know much about raw milk. I have researched it extensively and it is well regulated in my state.

      I think it’s funny that you link to an FDA website stating that it does not have an agenda. In my opinion they are wrapped up in the majority of the problems with our entire food system.

      The regulations are different in every state, but if cows are healthy (grass-fed) and milking is done in a sanitary way (usually on a small scale) then it is safe. The truth is we’ve been drinking raw milk for a lot longer than pasteurized. Pasteurization solves the problems of industrialized dairies. Generally raw milk dairies are on a smaller scale.

      You can click over to my website for my personal experience, just click on Real Food at the top!

      • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 4:13 pm

        i agree with you sarah on the part about the FDA definitely having an agenda. i’m not educated about the raw milk subject, but my general feeling is not to trust whatever the FDA says. refer to In Defense of Food for an explanation why.

        • i April 20, 2010, 4:50 pm

          I actually used to work at the CDC studying foodborne illness, and raw milk is not a good idea. In fact sale of raw milk for human consumption is outlawed in most states b/c it can be so dangerous
          pasteurization is basically one of the greatest public health interventions in the last 100 years. there is no evidence that raw milk has more nutrients, or that pasteurization compromises dairy in any way- not worth the $ or the risk to drink raw.

        • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 4:55 pm

          thanks for this perspective, i! i’m not saying that you shouldnt believe whatever the govt says just because they say it, but i do think we shouldnt believe it just because they say it. does that make sense? LOL hope i explained my paranoia a little better.

      • Katherine April 20, 2010, 4:56 pm

        Well, I suppose you do have a point about the FDA 😉 That’s one of (many) problems regarding food choices/politics – it is difficult to find information that is completely objective. I can only point to a number of disease outbreaks (Campylobacter, E. coli, Salmonella, etc.) that have been linked back to raw milk. “Grass-fed” cows or those on small farms are not less risky in any way, shape, or form (a recent outbreak of Campylobacter in MI was linked back to a very small 20 cow farm). There are well-managed small farms and large farms, as well as poorly managed farms of both sizes. Regardless of the farm size, cows can be asymptomatic carriers of a variety of pathogens. Pasteurization is simply a final step to guarantee that any of these pathogens that may be in the milk are killed before you consume them.

        Obviously, we fundamentally disagree on this issue and won’t see eye to eye. I simply fail to see the health benefits of raw milk. As for the argument that we’ve been drinking raw milk for a lot longer than pasteurized milk, you are absolutely correct. We also didn’t used to wear seatbelts or have our doctors bother to wash their hands before surgery. Perhaps we learned from experience?

        • Sarah for Real April 20, 2010, 7:03 pm

          You are right, we should just agree to disagree on this point.

          Sorry Caitlin, my mention of raw milk wasn’t intended to hi-jack your comments. I only mentioned it as an example of how I have switched my eating habits to incorporate more unprocessed, old-fashioned, local, whole foods.

          It works for me. I’m not the great raw-milk crusader or anything. I’ll have someone let you know if I die of Campylobacter, E. coli, Salmonella 😉

          I’m pretty confident the statistics show my risks of illness are higher by choosing organic spinach than raw milk, no?

  • Jaclyn April 20, 2010, 10:25 am

    Have you seen Fresh: The Movie? I saw it at a local screening recently and it had a huge impact on me…not sure if it was a culmination of events and this movie was just the final touch but I made huge changes to my diet immediately. You should check it out if you get a chance.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:51 am

      i have not seen that! thanks for passing it along!

  • Katy April 20, 2010, 10:25 am

    Skinny Bitch. I read it late one night last July and, like you, stopped eating meat the next day. I thought that was going to make me a healthier person, and possibly lose a few pounds, but that wasn’t the case. Instead, I was eating carbs 24/7. I was doing vegetarianism… the wrong way.
    I had a second wind of Food Revolution a few weeks ago when I realized that the carb-only diet was making me -gain- weight. I’m back to eating meat, but I try to only stick to healthier types (aka no fried ANYTHING)…

  • Sara April 20, 2010, 10:26 am

    Very interesting post, Caitlin!  My food revolution began twelve years ago when I became a vegetarian.  One of my sisters had been a vegetarian but converted back before I changed; I had been a bit of a picky eater growing up, so although I always struggled with eating animals, I always justified it with “what else will I eat?”  I was in my freshman year of college and majoring (at the time; changed the next year) in biology. I was in a second semester lab, and we were supposed to dissect a fetal pig.  I’d never dissected in high school (I argued that it was unnecessary for me to understand the subject, and my lab teacher was fine with it), and I was really struggling with it, but all day I talked it into myself that I would have to dissect that night.  But when I got to my lab, I told the TA that I couldn’t do it.  He said he never did either, and was fine with me just watching, which was difficult.  Then I went home and was going to eat a turkey sandwich.  That was the moment where I finally said to myself, “How can you feel so strongly about not using animals for scientific purposes but still go home and eat your turkey sandwich?”  And that was it!  Well, it was a long time coming, but I never looked back.  I don’t remember when I started reading food blogs (a couple of years ago, I guess), but they’ve given me great ideas on how to improve my diet
    (although I’m a pretty healthy eater who likes real food!) or change it up a bit with items I’d never thought of trying.  And I’ve become less picky, which helps! Also, over the years, I’ve read so much about the food industry and about.factory farming and so on.  It’s horrible, it’s sad, and if more people knew what was going on, I think they’d change their way of thinking about their food.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:52 am

      interesting story! i think that’s one of the things that solidified it for me too. how can i hug and sleep with my dogs and then eat a hot dog? it doesn’t make sense.

  • Chelsea (Chelsea's Chew and Run Fun) April 20, 2010, 10:28 am

    Thanks for the thorough recap of what people and types of media led you to be the balanced eater you are today. I recently read “Food Rules” and have yet to read “In Defense of Food.” I’m adding it to my reading queue.

    As for what sparked my food revolution, when I started venturing into the “Natural Foods” section of my grocery store. After shedding 30 lbs, I kept eating wholeseome, high-volume, mostly plant-based foods and that has helped me maintain my weight loss for nearly three years now.

  • Janelle April 20, 2010, 10:36 am

    I agree with all of your “food revolution” inspirations, but have two to add: The first is Barbara Kingsolver’s “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle.” If you haven’t read this, it is a fantastic book about her family’s experience eating only locally grown/produced food for an entire year. It really opened my eyes to the value of buying locally, and inspired me to grow my own garden and shop at the farmers market – both easy ways to incoorporate more healthful food! (it also made me feel guilty about my banana-a-day habit, but that is another story…)

    My second revolution came when I was teaching a private ski lesson to a very bratty 10-year-old girl from New York. I offered her a starburst, and she turned it down because it had “hydrogenated oils in it, and I don’t eat hydrogenated oils or high fructose corn syrup.” This was in 2005, and I had never heard of either. I thought myself slightly nutrition savvy, so a 10 year-old bringing up nutritional information that I had never heard of bothered me, and I started to do some research. Turns out, the little brat knew what she was talking about!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:53 am

      hahah awesome!!!!

  • Merry @ Merry Eats Oats April 20, 2010, 10:39 am

    The first blog I started reading was Kath’s and I also found it to be an eye opener. Not so much because the concept of real eating was fantastic to me but because she was actually doing it every day. And through her blog I discovered so many other blogs (like yours! That I absolutely love to pieces!) written by people who were eating well every single day. What a shocker! Living healthy could be a pleasure!

  • Abby April 20, 2010, 10:41 am

    My food revolution took a few 2-year steps. I saw Super Size Me in college, then 2 years later I watched my brother battle a life threatening case of colitis which made my mom star cooking extremely healthy foods for us…two years later I read skinny Bitch and stopped eating meat and then almost two years after that I found food blogs! I’m deinitely my healthiest and happiest now!

  • Katie - Life Discombobulated April 20, 2010, 10:42 am


    I have watched a few episodes of Food Revolution and have really enjoyed it. Hopefully his message is getting through to a lot of people!
    Food, Inc. started my food revolution (I wrote about it here: and here: and then a visit to a CSA farm solidified it. I made a very solid effort for a long time to eat only ethical meat and animal products, although, started the change during a VERY hectic and busy time in my life, which, I think, led to its lackluster success. I have been making a conscious effort since to simply eat less meat, but plan to really reevaluate what I’m eating once the semester is over and I have more free time this summer. Your blog is an awesome place to find quick meal ideas that don’t involve meat – thanks!!!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:53 am

      your welcome!

  • Erin April 20, 2010, 10:42 am

    The Food Revolution is getting repetitive, you’re right. There’s always one person who is anti Jamie, and by the end they like his ideas.
    I’d like to read skinny bitch, after reading your review. Thanks for the recommendation!
    BTW, Food Inc. really opened my eyes too!

  • Amber K @ sparkpeople April 20, 2010, 10:43 am

    Reading healthy blogs definitely helped mine. The more I read, the more I desperately wanted to start eating cleaner. I just can’t get over the long ingredient lists on some of my previous favorite foods (I was TOTALLY a dannon light n’ fit girl).

    I absolutely love Jamie’s show, I just wish people weren’t so stuck in their ways. They don’t want to do things that are good for them, just what they have always done.

    Now I spend each morning reading my favorite bloggers and learning more and more each day. Sort of how I’m sure people read newspapers in the past with their breakfast. I still take mindful bites, but I learn so many new things to use every morning!

  • Megan @ Mego Blog April 20, 2010, 10:44 am

    My food revolution came from a number of places, and it is still revolving today. Basically, Skinny Bitch started it all and Food Inc. confirmed it for me. I use your blog along with other healthy eating blogs to give me the daily fix of reminders why I’ve changed my diet (more veggies, less meat, natural meat if I do eat it and way less refined sugar). So THANKS for being apart of my revolution!!

  • Carrie @ I See Monsters April 20, 2010, 10:54 am

    My food revolution started when I moved in with some friends who ate very healthfully. I just listened and soaked it all in. Then I read In Defense of Food, and that was it for me. I still struggle with junk food cravings and the like, but my diet as a whole is so much better than it was two years ago, and I feel so much better now that I’ve lost weight and exercise.

  • Ashley M. [at] (never home)maker April 20, 2010, 11:01 am

    Hey, Caitlin. I am loving Jaime’s show. I agree, though. It’s a bit repetitive.

    What sparked my personal food revolution is watching the diet my parents (and family) eat. No one in my family is athletic. I’m one of the few with a healthy weight. Seeing what they eat when I go home (mostly packaged stuff — ick!) gets me in a total funk. And it deepens my drive to lead a healthier lifestyle. I just wish I could pass on my passion to my parents. But they take it as criticism. I’m not planning to stop trying, though!


  • emptynutjar April 20, 2010, 11:04 am

    I think the comment on Pollan’s book is interesting. It doesn’t have to be complicated. Its like the latest regulations on sodium…now companies are coming up with products with “reduced sodium”…my god, they keep tempering with products to make it “better”, when the food in the first place is the best…I am not an “ideal” eater, (i don’t want to be all obsessive about it), but I think some of the stuff is ridiculous.
    I love your thoughts on stop looking at bread as carbs…instead see it as fuel, food, etc. I like that a lot.

    By the way , isn’t your breakfast an Elvis sandwich? 🙂 Thought I heard that somewhere.

    There are a lot of interesting books for sure to read on that stuff. You have to be careful of nutriitonal studies and stuff though…I pretty much disregard much of it now..nutrition science itself is a difficult thing…the research and trials –too many variables to know what is what.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:54 am

      youre right, it was an elvis sammie! but grilled! is his grilled?

      • Lauren April 20, 2010, 3:03 pm

        From someone living in Memphis…Elvis usually fried his sandwich 🙂

        • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 3:05 pm

          like, deep fried?!

        • Lauren April 20, 2010, 3:34 pm

          Not deep fried…basically like you do a grilled cheese, but with a lotta butter/grease(at least from the recipes I’ve googled/what restaurants around here serve).

  • Morgan @ Life After Bagels April 20, 2010, 11:07 am

    It’s funny that when I’m asked, I’m kind of embarrassed to admit that Skinny Bitch is the reason I’m vegetarian. It seems so silly, like oh a pop culture book influenced me! But really it’s the reason I became vegetarian, it’s not the reason I stay vegetarian. I also eat very differently than the book recommends. They are high on processed meat alternatives.

    The blogs that help keep me in line and inspired are yours, Matt’s (No Meat Athlete) and Angela’s (Oh She Glows). I constantly am getting recipes or ideas from all three sources.

  • Ellen April 20, 2010, 11:10 am

    i’ll spare you MY food revolution saga. it’s a long and ongoing story, but i’m making it my career so i guess that’s a good thing!

    anyway, if you enjoyed food, inc. then you must see FRESH. it is even better!

  • Sam (My Sugar Obsession) April 20, 2010, 11:17 am

    Last summer I read Jillian Michael’s Mastering Your Metabolism and she talked about eating organic and how processed foods have too much fake food that can affect your body. This book got me thinking about changing my diet, but it wasn’t until I saw FOOD, Inc. that I really changed my diet. Then I read In Defense of Food and Omnivore’s Dilemma. These two books really opened my eyes to what processed food was doing to my body and what real food could do to my body.

  • Christine @ Grub, Sweat and Cheers April 20, 2010, 11:23 am

    I agree with all your sources – bar one. They helped me as well. As have a lot of intuitive eating books and the very commonsense Marion Nestle.

    What was a big turning point for me was my love of food, cooking and gardening. The better a cook I became the more I cared about what I was making, where the ingredients came from and what the effect would be on my body.

    As for the one you cited that I couldn’t tolerate – that would be Skinny Bitch. It made me furious. Everything from their ludicrous ‘look-at-us’ swearing (and I say this as somebody who swears like a soldier) to their condescending ‘don’t be a fat pig’ approach. Yeah that really helps women like me who have been self-critcal their whole life. Nice.

    Their inconsistencies, pseudo-science and dubious claims also pissed me off. They make some good points, but nothing that Michael Pollan and numerous others haven’t made better.

    Their ideas on breakfast were some of the most ludicrous things I’ve ever read. I could go on. But won’t. 🙂

    Ok…deep breath…rant over. Sorry.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:54 am

      i agree, their menu plans were ridiculous.

  • Shayna @ Cuts and Curves April 20, 2010, 11:24 am

    This is an awesome post!

    My husband and I just watched Food Inc this weekend. It’s amazing. I just wish organic and local food wasn’t so expensive. I am going to start working more of these things into our diets, I’m getting another job to help pay for it. My conscience just won’t let me buy mass produced food any more.

  • Lily @ Lily's Health Pad April 20, 2010, 11:36 am

    I agree 100 percent about your thoughts on Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution. Plus, it’s just hokey. I can’t take it seriously.

  • Julia @ British Bride April 20, 2010, 11:50 am

    Caitlin – glad you are enjoying our British exports!

    I have a query if you dont mind – I saw recently you got a netbook- obviously its good for blogging, internet etc, but what is it like for typing longer word documents? Also – what sort did you get?



    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 11:56 am

      i wouldnt get it for longer documents but its good for short stuff. i got an e-machines one. it’s the cheapest one on

  • Sarah-Mae @ Eat, Run, Knit April 20, 2010, 11:51 am

    I started with Kath’s blog too in terms of food blogs! I love Food Inc and Michael Pollan, greatly informative!

  • Lisa April 20, 2010, 12:00 pm

    My food revolution began just recently. Training for my 55 mile bike ride next month AND the Hood To Coast Relay in August (197 miles total) has shown me that I need to eat REAL food and eat food for FUEL. A huge change in my life!

  • Amanda (modernation) April 20, 2010, 12:02 pm

    This is a great post. I was really into the first two episodes of Food Revolution because I thought they were doing a good job of bringing attention to the horrible state of the way things are. But then it turned to networky and started to get silly (umm, choreographed stir fry making?). I am still watching because it is a good start. I also love Michael Pollan and agree that In Defense of Food totally made so much. I would read things he said and go, “Duh, that makes so much sense, why didn’t I think of that?” I grew up eating real food and really appreciating it and cooking it. I think as an adult, when I started to get into endurance events, I looked at food as fuel, not just stuff that tasted good or bad. When you are running or cycling for hours on end, you have no choice but to figure out how to fuel yourself. So I think that was my food revolution. Wow – sorry for the super long comment!

  • chandra April 20, 2010, 12:03 pm

    My “food revolution” started with my weight loss journey and was fueled more by finding food/healthy living blogs. After revamping my food intake and realizing how much better REAL foods make me feel, it’s hard to NOT eat them.

    PS – you’ve made me crave grilled cheese for lunch. 🙂

  • runnerforever April 20, 2010, 12:08 pm

    Everyone seems to be loving the pressed PB + banana sandwiches, I wish I had a way to grill mine in my dorm.
    I was too thin and getting injured all the time and realized that I needed to use food to take better care of my body so that I could do the things I love.

  • Camille April 20, 2010, 12:08 pm

    #1. Breakfast looks amazing, as always.
    #2. My “food revolution” began when I started listening to my body. When I realized what foods made me feel good and which ones made me sluggish I started eating right, and I haven’t looked back since!

  • Sarah April 20, 2010, 12:19 pm

    i just started watching the jamie oliver show on hulu last night…it is pretty disturbing. we didn’t have a cafeteria until junior high which i think makes a huge difference. i bought “in defense of food” a few months ago and need to read it! the whole food industry in this country makes me sick…i almost threw up when jamie oliver showed the kids in west virginia how chicken nuggets are made. so disgusting.

  • Jessica April 20, 2010, 12:21 pm

    My food revolution began when I found food blogs. The first one I ever read was Then I also found this one. They made me want to try new, healthy foods.

    After I saw “Earthlings”, I never wanted to eat meat again. That movie turned me vegetarian. “Food Inc.” was also a very good movie, and not quite so heart wrenching.

  • eatdrinkandbemerrynyc April 20, 2010, 12:22 pm

    Definitely blogs. Then when I started to exercise all the time and became a runner I become completely conscious of everything I was putting into my body. Which is a good thing 🙂

  • Hillary [Nutrition Nut on the Run] April 20, 2010, 12:26 pm

    I totally support Jamie’s Revolution; I think he’s trying to do great things. Food, Inc. really opened my eyes as well. I think it’s a must-watch for ALL Americans. I have ‘In Defense of Food’ sitting on my bookshelf…now I’m inspired to open it – thanks!

    REAL FOOD REVOLUTION – woot woot!

    • Donna Parker April 20, 2010, 1:24 pm

      Yes Hillary — get the book off the bookshelf and onto your nightstand. And in turn I will rent Food, Inc.

  • Stephanie April 20, 2010, 12:33 pm

    Jillian Michaels’ Master Your Metabolism!
    Or just thinking about all the stuff I cant pronounce that was going into my body.

  • Amanda April 20, 2010, 12:36 pm

    When I started reading food blogs a year ago my views on food changed. I too ate dannon light and fit and shunned a variety of healthy foods that were higher in calories. I started reading ‘Run Eat Repeat’ by total accident and loved it. She was funny, in shape and ate real food (plus more veggies than I’d ever thought possible). My next read was ‘Eat live run’ then ‘ohsehglows’ and finally your blog. Slowly I gave up the light and fit (it wasn’t that good anyways!) and picked up greek yogurt. Then came more salads …. more stir fries …. and green monsters! It’s been great!

  • Micheline April 20, 2010, 12:39 pm

    Despite Jamie’s show being a bit repetitive at times, the way he’s going about the problem is exactly the way he has to in America. Little by little, bit by bit, if they tackled all of the problems in the food industry, it’s overwhelming for a nation built on the chicken nugget. If there were MORE programs like Jamie’s and MORE AVERAGE people trying to educate the youth and beyond, then we could get somewhere. I’m not a fan of Obama, but I really like Michelle’s childhood obesity campaigns. The movement is slow, but I think it shows promise.

    My food revolution was figuring out that the 100 calorie packs were not going to fulfill me for snack purposes. Once I switched to real food, real portions, and started reading Kath’s blog, my opinion quickly changed. Then, I started reading your blog and was interested in all of the races you decided to run. Way to get the word out!

  • Susan April 20, 2010, 12:45 pm

    Kath was totally part of my personal food revolution too! For the exact same reasons you listed here. I was a slave to low calorie foods until I saw how well she was able to maintain her weight loss eating REAL food. Also helped me find a love for cooking healthful and nutritional foods. I’m a little backwards though, I was a vegetarian for 8 years, and started eating meat again in my quest to be more healthy. My body likes it and I feel much better with it 🙂

  • Kandi April 20, 2010, 12:53 pm

    My Food Revolution came with Skinny Bitch. I thought it was going to be another typical diet book (the sexy cover drew me in) but it really helped me to ask myself “Why am I treating myself like a garbage disposal?” From there, I started looking up blogs, searching for words like “vegan” “organic” “whole”.

    I would like to see more movies like Food, Inc. (which was good). Do yo have any more movie suggestions?

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 12:56 pm

      Fast Food Nation and Earthlings (which I didnt see but I wanted the trailer… That was enough. I warned you)

      • Kandi April 20, 2010, 1:29 pm


  • Tara April 20, 2010, 12:54 pm

    Great post! I totally have a crush on Jamie too.

    THANK YOU for talking about how this is a VERY COMPLICATED issue that is not being fully addressed by his show! The thing about food is that it is all-encompassing. Pick any aspect of life (or any college major) and food can be related to it. Econ, philosphy, manufacturing, sociology, marketing, education, the list goes on. Everything has to do with food and food has to do with everything. So of course it’s a monster with many heads!

    The show IS getting repetitive, esp. with his constant “Here’s why everything might be LOST at this point if XYZ doesn’t go well, and I am SO WORRIED!” followed by “Oh, everything went great!”

    But the very fact that this show even exists is a MAJOR WIN! I hope it touches many many people who are unaware of the “food scene” It’s all about spreading awareness!!

    • Tara April 20, 2010, 12:56 pm

      oh, and my own personal food revolution: I’ve been more aware of what I eat ever since taking a nutrition class in college. I think nutrition should be required curriculum for everyone.

      I’ve also been affected a lot by the blog because so many of my eating habits are driven by emotions rather than properly fueling my body!

  • Heather I. April 20, 2010, 12:58 pm

    In Defense of Food also moved me, what an amazing book. My husband and I enjoyed Food, Inc, and I’m so glad he watched it with me so now we both are trying to be more conscious of our choices!
    I was appalled when I saw aspartame listed as one (of the many) added ingredients to Light & Fit yogurt. What a disappointment!

  • Susan April 20, 2010, 1:00 pm

    Just found your blog. Fantastic. I am new to blogging and getting so enthralled by food bloggers. I find you all a huge inspiration in my journey of clean eating. My food and fitness revolution started about a year ago, as I approached my 40th birthday (see this blog post: And my salute to food bloggers here:

    I still struggle with food, but am working hard to really solidify the new habits I’m establishing. It will be a life-long journey. And I kinda like that!

    Keep up the great work. And congrats on your book.

  • Hannah April 20, 2010, 1:02 pm

    I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THIS POST! I am very much a strong believer in eating whole, natural foods. It’s nice to see so many people who feel the same way because in my everyday life, not many people feel the same way about nutrition… It’s such a shame!

    My food revolution started when I was young. I was lucky enough that my parents taught us to eat heathy and didn’t keep much junk around. I expanded beyond that more my last year of high school and when I started college. That’s when I fell in love with running and started to look at food as fuel rather than a daily battle of what’s “safe” and what’s not. When I started to read blogs like yours, Kath’s, Tina’s, and Meghann’s, I loved that there were other people out there so dedicated to eating real food. Nutrition fascinates me and since I’ve become a reader and a blogger myself I really “get into it” now 🙂 I think our society needs to learn how amazing REAL food is and that it makes you feel better on all levels of your life.

  • Kate April 20, 2010, 1:03 pm

    Sigh, I’m probably going to be the only person trying to defend chocolate milk but I hate hate hate the taste of plain milk. If I was forced to drink plain milk in my school lunches I probably would do without (or save my pocket money to buy juice or soda from the vending machine which is a different issue.)

    Kath’s blog sparked my food revolution. The sheer joy she has in her food made me insanely jealous. While on my diet I had no joy eating my food. I always ate what I thought I should eat, not what I really wanted or what tasted good to me. I left most meals feeling unsatisfied and would binge to find satisfaction.

    Then I read Intuitive Eating and things clicked. I’m still trying to put the practices to work (honoring my hunger is the hardest after so long ignoring it). But I’m slowly learning what foods I like vs what foods I can’t stand. I’m surprised at how many processed foods I think taste like crap now that I have permission to eat them. I like what I cook better.

  • Me-Linh @ Sweet and Sweat April 20, 2010, 1:06 pm

    My “Food Revolution” was sparked when I saw a picture of myself with my then boyfriend. I realized I looked like I had gotten my wisdom teeth pulled and I wasn’t the healthy girl I was pretending to be. I’m vegetarian but I wasn’t healthy. I’d eat chips, granola bars (2) for dessert, it was not healthy. SO I renewed my eating habits by eating WHOLE food. WHAT A DIFFERENCE!

  • Lauren April 20, 2010, 1:08 pm

    And Caitlin you were the very first blog I ever started reading that lead me to my personal food revelations and blogging endeavors!!!

    And I always tell everyone that! You were my inspiration. 🙂

  • Ellen April 20, 2010, 1:32 pm

    Caitlin, you inspire me all the time! I didn’t know much about eating REAL food until I read your blog. I still struggle with my eating, but I’ve come a long way, so hopefully I will continue on that path and finally make long-term lifestyle changes. I’m ready to get off this food rollercoaster I’ve been riding all my life!!!

  • Michelle April 20, 2010, 1:47 pm

    My Food revolution came when I started my first nutrition course in the effort to become an RD. We had to do a diet analysis, and my daily average calorie intake was 900 calories, with none of the essential fats and 20% of the protein that i needed to be healthy. I was floored by what my body COULDN’T do with what it wasn’t feeding it. I realized there was a reason that i felt deprived ALL the TIME! It is such a relief to eat frequently, and eat yummy HEALTHY stuff! I am loving it! I love all your tips, and I actually have started saving your food ideas on my desktop for easy reference when I am wondering what to make for lunch 🙂

  • Hedda April 20, 2010, 1:50 pm

    Your blog was actually what started my own “Food Revolution”.
    Just starting treatment for anorexia I learned about your Operation Beautiful through a link at
    I can not exactly explain it, but is was an eye-opener to me. It was an inspiration and motivation, I wanted to spread the word about self-respect and worth. In order to do that I realized that I need fuel to get through the day. Reading your regular blog Healthy Tipping Point confirmed what the “healthy” part of me knew : it is not dangerous to fuel your body. Calories are not, as my ED would have it, your enemy- they are your life saver. Eating enough is what makes people get through the day. And to eat is not dangerous, it will not make me instantly gain weight- food and eating is rather a world of fun and satisfying discoveries and experiences.

  • Corinne April 20, 2010, 2:03 pm

    What a FABULOUS POST!! I think I have had many mini food revolutions that have helped me along with my journey towards a balanced/healthy diet, but until this past fall I do not think I was fully enlightened. I started training for a half marathon late summer/early fall of 2009 and realized WHAT my body needed to really be fueled. Light and diet foods were NOT the way to go. I was ravenous and light yogurt or rice cakes lasted only 45 minutes in my tummy. (greek yogurt, LASTED, PB LASTED AND fueled my runs!). Discovering healhty lifestyle blogs (carrots n’ cake, runners kitchen, eat live run, HTP) during my training only accentuated my thirst for knowledge on what foods were best. Not just the protein/fiber rich foods, but FRESH foods made with ingredients I could pronounce and list on one hand! The difference is uncanny! 🙂

    Jamie Olivers revolution is quite eye opening and for that its serving a purpose. I totally agree though, sometimes comes off scripted and slightly arrogant because there ARE families that jsut cannot afford to eat fresh food all the time, with kids that will nto eat anything BUT chicken fingers….

    anyways ramblinggggg THANK YOU CAITLIN for this great post. I really want to read Michael Pollan’s book now! 🙂

  • Wendy Irene April 20, 2010, 2:37 pm

    Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food was HUGE for me!

  • Julie @savvyeats April 20, 2010, 2:41 pm

    I agree, kids will usually choose the option that is less-than healthy because it tastes good. And we don’t want to swing the other way, where kids are afraid of food or have eating disorders That’s why I do like that Jamie is offering healthier nachos, etc at some lunches… they still get to enjoy foods that are traditionally junk, but in a healthier way!

    • Julie @savvyeats April 20, 2010, 2:49 pm

      Sorry, the above was supposed to be a reply to another comment!

      My revolution came from reading food blogs, Food Inc, and interning at a certain big food company…

  • Kristin (Cook, Bake and Nibble) April 20, 2010, 2:44 pm

    I have had quite a few “Food Revolutions” in the past few years- including many you have! When I started reading food blogs it was a big wakeup call. I was at a point where I was recovering from what I couldn’t even admit to myself at the time was an eating disorder. I started reading Jenna, from Eat, Live, Run’s blog and it completely changed my perspective on eating. I was like wait- she eats ANYTHING she wants? And she eats chocolate when she wants? She’s in culinary school and she’s NOT fat?? Wait a second, there must be something to this…

    I had an unhealthy relationship with food, and food blogs, combined with some fantastic reading- French Women Don’t Get Fat being a prime example, made me realize I could eat what I wanted and not be fat! It’s all about balance. Revolution #1.

    Revolution #2 came when, although I was a vegetarian before I started my blog, was reading Skinny Bitch. It almost instantly made me want to go vegan. So I tried going vegan, for a while- but I relied on lots of processed foods. Fake burgers, meatballs, sausages, cheeze, etc.

    Revolution 3 & 4 came hand in hand- I read In Defense of Food while on a trip to Calabria, Italy. I spent the summer there and realized what was important was not being 100% vegan- but eating fresh, wholesome foods that came from all natural sources. I started eating meat again soon thereafter.

    Revolution #5- Came recently. I moved to Canada not long ago to pursue my dream of becoming a chef, and sharing my food revelations with others. I started feeling like something inside of me what out of balance, but I couldn’t pinpoint what. A couple months in school went on and my body wasn’t feeling right. At this point somehow I knew I wanted to be vegetarian again. But I KNEW it was going to be hard with school. My revelation came when I read The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone, and soon after re-read Skinny Bitch. I am now a pescetarian again, making my way to vegetarianism, and possibly even veganism- one day. And I feel happier and healthier than ever!!


  • Lauren @ Eat, Drink, and Be Hopeful April 20, 2010, 3:06 pm

    I really don’t know what to say. I agree with this 178366117%. You said it all so perfectly. I’m trying to eat whole foods more and more now and stop with the fake stuff. I love what Jamie is doing, and I hope more people will partake in this revolution. It’s about time. Great post!

  • Jenna April 20, 2010, 3:22 pm

    For me, it was food blogs. Before then, I still had twisted ways of categorizing “good” and “bad” foods. Now I just “eat food, not too much, mostly plants.” I still haven’t read that book though. I need to get my butt in gear. Great post!

  • liane April 20, 2010, 4:17 pm

    When I was in high school I worked at McDonald’s and, shocking, was overweight. Then I quit, joined Weight Watchers and lost 30 pounds. Of course, I lost the 30 pounds by eating fat-free or light foods. Um, brilliant plan, clearly, because when I stopped eating all the processed foods and not paying attention to portion size, I gained weight again. Also, I never exercised. HELLO!

    About 5-6 years ago, I met a friend who was really into healthy living, and she recommended a bunch of books to me and I sort of dabbled in meatless months, buying local etc. But always fell out of the habit.

    Last spring, I started training for my very first half marathon. I knew I couldn’t continue to eat the way I was used to, I was not fueling my body with proper nutrients. I picked up a copy of the Omnivore’s Dilemma and off I went… I read “In Defence of Food”, “Twinkie Deconstructed”, “Fast Food Nation”, “The End of Overeating”, “Food Matters” and a whole other host of books over the summer. Oh, and I watched Food, Inc.

    In the late summer, I stumbled across food blogs. First “oh she glows”, then “Eat, Live, Run”, then HTP and CarrotsnCake… AND that is when the transformation really started to occur. I limited meat, until a month ago, and now I’ve cut out red meats/poultry etc, if I eat dairy it’s organic. Fruits and veggies are purchased as much as possible locally and organic, although the costs does get expensive, so I can’t always buy organic 🙁

    Next on my list is the China Study and The Kind Diet.

    I saw the trailer for earthlings, but I don’t think I could stomach the watching the whole movie.

  • Georgina April 20, 2010, 4:24 pm

    Firstly thanks for posting this, its good to know others think the same way in my ‘Meatatarian’ world, your blog and site is really inspiring =)

    My food revolution about 4 years ago began when I stumbled across a food blog on the vegan family house website: I even didn’t know what a vegan was!. I then went on to read ‘Vegan, the new ethics of eating’ by Erik Marcus (which you can download from the authors site for free). It changed my thinking dramatically and I became a vegetarian almost immediately and now eat a largely vegan diet.

    I recently watched a BBC programme, Panorama: ‘Chocolate – The Bitter Truth’ which you maybe interested in. It backs up a lot of what Jason Vale says in his book: ‘Chocolate Busters’ regarding the exploitation of workers from third world countries including children, ick, ick, ick!. Fairtrade is the way to go!

  • Lauren (Amateur Gastronomist) April 20, 2010, 4:30 pm

    I’ve started applying most of Michael Pollan’s “Food Rules” to my daily diet. If I don’t recognize an ingredient on packaged foods than I won’t buy it. I also avoid HFCS like the plague. I’m trying to eat less packaged and processed foods. I’m also only drinking water, tea, and a coffee in the morning. I lost 5 pounds the first week I started this “diet”.

  • Kath April 20, 2010, 4:44 pm

    Awwww thanks for the nice post Caitlin!!! xoxo

  • Retta @ RunRettaRun April 20, 2010, 4:46 pm

    Amazing topic! Honestly, my first food/fitness blog to read was YOURS! I received an email from Fitness Magazine and yours one of the blogs listed. I was hooked. So THANK YOU, Catilin for starting me on my Food Revolution!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 4:54 pm

      thank you retta!

  • Annie@stronghealthyfit April 20, 2010, 5:04 pm

    I started eating healthy in high school, about 7 years ago, but when I saw Food Inc. last summer it really inspired me to make a serious commitment to choose my food wisely. I also just read In Defense of Food and was blown away.

  • Amanda (Amanda "runs") April 20, 2010, 6:07 pm

    Funny that you mention Skinny Bitch. I was in Borders a few minutes ago and contemplated buying it! Sadly, I didn’t have enough $$. My “food revolution” started… well, I have no idea the exact time or anything, but the contributing factors are:

    YOU! Reading HTP and OB and hearing how you can eat healthyand excersize AND write a book at the same time!!

    My English Teacher. She jogged with my science teacher (they called it yogging)last week. She also runs races and eats healthy. (she said since teachers are role models we try to eat healthy)

    Varoius health/food blogs that are too many to count

    The fact that I have to eat veggies and my brother doesn’t.
    I watch FR every friday, and yes, it IS a tad repetitive. (A TAD? It’s repetitive, repetitive, repetitive! Ok, fine, maybe a lot repetitive…)Excuse the inner monologue. 🙂 I tend to do that a lot…

  • Teresa April 20, 2010, 6:43 pm

    I’m really enjoying your blog, but I’m a bothered by this post. I live in the Midwest next to hog and cattle farms. I’ve been visited many hog and cattle farms. Many of my friends are farmers. 98 percent of farms in the U.S. are family owned. The term “factory farm” to scare people into spending more money on food. And not many people in the world can afford to pay more for food. Please don’t buy what “Food Inc.” and Michael Pollan are selling. It’s not a true picture of modern farming today. Thanks for letting me comment.

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 9:07 pm

      I totally understand what you’re saying. Not all farmers are factory farmers, and there is an important distinction between local farmers and factory farms. It doesn’t really make a difference for me in terms of whether I will eat meat, but I know it matters to other people, and it’s a good alternative to true factory farmed meat.

      However, the sad reality is that the top four beef packers control more than 80% of the market. Additionally, the vast majority of the meat produced in the United States is slaughtered at one of THIRTEEN slaughterhouses. Factory farming is REAL. The vast majority of meat are raised in cattle yards, not on country farms. I would be curious to know where your friends’ cows get slaughtered as well.

      Where is your statistic coming from that 98% of farms in the US are family owned? Does that just include hog and cattle? Or vegetable, too? Because I seriously doubt that statistic. Families might own it, but that doesn’t mean Tyson Chicken doesn’t CONTROL and REGULATE it.

      The term “Factory Farming” applies to a real problem. Have you seen Food Inc? You should… It’s eye opening and is NOT pro vegetarianism or anti meat farmer AT ALL. That’s one of the primary reasons why I think the film is so good and it was so commercial successful.

      That’s for sharing your opinion!

      • Mary November 1, 2010, 12:02 pm

        I saw Food Inc. and disagree with most of what was presented in the movie. The producers chose who they interviewed, and picked disgruntled farmers to interview. I have worked at many ‘factory farms’ and been to the slaughterhouses where the meat is produced. These locations are very clean and they do not mistreat these animals.

        I suppose my lack of excitement about movies or books such as Food Inc. is that I have no problem eating animals that I have raised or that come from these ‘factory farms’. I have eaten many animals that I have raised and never shed a tear or reconsidered eating meat.

  • Teresa April 20, 2010, 6:44 pm

    Sorry about all the typos in my previous post. Just writing from the heart.

  • Amanda @ Cakes and Ale April 20, 2010, 6:46 pm

    Mine started with food blogs too. I had lost weight in a way similar to you, Caitlin… I chose everything low calorie, never considering the artificial junk ingredients that might be in there. Then I started reading Eat Like Me on and decided to follow the food pyramid method instead rather than calorie counting. That got me even more into food blogs, and I almost immediately got into the “real food” movement, eliminating artificial stuff, HFCS, and unethically raised meat / dairy from my diet.
    Now I just focus on making sure I get enough veggies in every day. That seems to be number one for me in terms of maintaining weight loss and being healthy. After that, I’m all about low fat dairy, fresh fruit, lean protein (I’m flexitarian, and eat meat – well, mainly fish – about once a week), and whole grains… Oh – and treats of course (daily dessert and a glass or two of wine or beer here or there!)

  • Jolene ( April 20, 2010, 8:01 pm

    Many things sparked my food revolution including “SuperSize Me”, “In Defense of Food.” “The Natural Cures they Don’t want you to Know about” and many other books and articles.

    I really recommend the book “The Face on Your Plate” and “Survival of the Sickest.” They are eye opening as well.

    Food blogs changed my way of eating as well … actually having my own did the most!

  • Cynthia (It All Changes) April 20, 2010, 8:05 pm

    Food blogs made a big change for me. Then reading In Defense of food was great. And my health has been a huge factor. Instead of just settling for IBS pains I’ve actually paid attention to what causes them and starting to eliminate them.

  • Nicole, RD April 20, 2010, 8:06 pm

    What an interesting post! I agree so much with your revolution starters! I think I may pose this question to my readers, as well…your feedback has been excellent and so fun to peruse!

  • Edith April 20, 2010, 8:08 pm

    ditto on Skinny Bitch, In defense of food, and KERF. Guess I need to go see Food Inc 🙂 This was a cool post 🙂

  • Marisa April 20, 2010, 9:23 pm

    Caitlin! One) I follow your blog and LOVE it! You are so amazing! Two) My food revolution started two years ago when I developed a severe allergy to preservatives. It’s sooo crazy how much crap is put into seemingly “healthy” food. I eat completely organic for the most part (expensive), but I can rely on whole natural food too. Anyway, I love Jamie Oliver and think he is amazing! Hopefully this will educate people more on what their eating!

    • Caitlin April 20, 2010, 9:25 pm

      an allergy to preservatives?! oh my!!!

      • Marisa April 20, 2010, 9:46 pm

        Yeah, it’s bizarre, but actually a lot more uncommon than many think. I was tested for everything before I got a handle on it.

  • Tonyne @ The Unlikely Success Story April 20, 2010, 10:00 pm

    I am watching Food Revolution, but I agree it is getting repetitive and unfortunately I don’t think it’s going to change much in such a corrupt school system that the US has. My food revolution is blogs like yours, Kath’s, Tina’s and Roni’s. All of which teach a healthy balance. That is what it’s all about.

  • Lorin April 20, 2010, 11:46 pm

    So, pretty much my first “other” blog besides eat like me that I started to follow was kath eats through self. I also read In Defense of Food and SKinny Bitch and had the same comments about it as you. I’ve been vegetarian for 10 days (woohoo) after reading Skinny Bitch. We kinda have the same food experience! Anyways, your pb and banana sandwich looks good ( I am obsessed with peanut butter! I had it 3 times today 😛 )

  • Kilee April 21, 2010, 1:47 am

    What a great post! I relate to all of the books/people that you highlighted. It is such a releif to get out of a “carbs are bad, fat is bad, chocolate is bad” mentality and transition into a “let’s eat unprocessed natural food” way of thinking. Thank you for highlighting some of the great influentials that we have to look up to.

    Great photos of the Operation Beautiful women. They are an inspiration too!

  • Jessica Lee April 21, 2010, 2:18 am

    wow, that is the first time i’ve seen the trailer for that show. it is really inspiring. now i’m intrigued and i want to watch it!!

    i used to eat all kinds of “fat free” and “sugar free” foods to lose weight but then i finally starting looking into ingredients and read online that all the fake stuff is probably making you fatter in the long run. after doing more and more research, i started looking less at the calories and more at the ingredients. now i try to eat whole foods so i dont have to worry about ingredients. if i buy packaged things like bread or condiments, i make sure there is NO high fructose corn syrup and junk in it.

  • Megan April 21, 2010, 6:48 am

    Hi! I’m a pretty new reader to your blog, but it was finding your blog that changed the way I eat. Before it was all about less calories the better. Or at least lower in fat. I’ve been this way for almost 8 years. I’ve now shifted more towards the way you eat! Not only have I pumped up the amount of vegetables I eat, I’ve also cut back a lot on the meat. Not sure if I could ever become vegetarian, but even having meat a couple times a week instead of twice a day has made me feel great! From your website, I also found a lot of the other food blogs you’ve mentioned, including Kath’s. And I love them all! I barely read any other kind of blog these days. 🙂

    • Caitlin April 21, 2010, 8:45 am

      i’m glad i could help! 🙂 yay veggies!

  • Erica April 21, 2010, 8:48 am

    Came across your blog from PreventionRD’s post today and decided I had to stop by. This was such a great post! My food Revolution started when I was in high school as I tried to eat better, however it quickly turned to lots of processed, low calorie, 100 packs of food etc that was extremely processed. When I entered by dietetic internship in 2008, the book Skinny Bitch was recommended to me, not to mention Food Inc. After reading and seeing this documentary, I started changing the way I ate, more wholesome, “real” and clean food versus the process stuff I was eating. I began to feel much better and to mention lost some weight!
    Loved this post!

  • Teresa April 21, 2010, 10:37 am

    I don’t have to watch Food Inc. because I live it. I’ve been inside many so-called “factory farms,” all owned and operated by young farmers (many the same age as you). The farmers do everything they can to care for their animals. I wonder, how many hog farms have you visited? Or how many cattle feedlots have you seen first-hand? It’s easy to believe what movie or best-selling author tells you when you don’t see it first-hand and know the truth. BTW, I got my number from the USDA, and it’s definitely not just for vegetable farms. Since you like statistics, look it up for yourself:,

  • Amanda April 22, 2010, 10:16 am

    Skinny bitch did it to me too! And movies like Food Inc. just further pushed me away from animal products.

  • Janice/ down the veggie road April 25, 2010, 2:33 pm

    Wow this is a GREAT post and by all the responses obviously important to many of us… I hve not has time to read all the comments but wanted to say thanks for the post on this Very important topic in our society…. For digestive issues and weight problems my hubs and I went vegetarian (almost soley vegan) almost a yr ago this wk (we do have shrimp or fish 1-2x a MONTH though and won’t make any apologies for that ) and it was been life changing living on a plant based diet and elimiting lots of processed foods …. I never read skinny bitch but did buy and eat from the engine2 diet book (plant based eating) and the kind diet by Alicia S (although I was raised that animals are intended to be food for humans I currently have NO interest consuming animals as food ) and we LOVE eating a diet high in greens/fruits/veggies/soy/grains and legumes and hope one day my friends and family will adopt some of these healthy choices for themselves
    I have heard of the defense of food and food Inc and we plan to ck them both out soon 😉

  • Katherina @ Zephyr Runs May 18, 2011, 8:57 am

    Food Matters! It is an incredible documentary both about food and big pharm. – I think they let you buy it online for $5 and then get $5 off if you want to buy the dvd, which is what I did. It is incredible and I share it with everyone. As soon as I saw that I immediately went 3 months raw before realizing it’s a marathon not a sprint, so I scaled back and started forming habits of healthy eating. Now I’m tackling the exercise, brought on by blogs like yours!

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