How to Detox Your Pantry and Freezer

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Here we go! — another 5 day stretch talking about real food in our kitchens.

Last week I offered you:

If you’re beginning on the journey of restocking your kitchen with healthier options, all this information can be overwhelming!  Ask me how I know. 🙂

So, take it in baby steps, and I’ll offer a few suggestions today.  Start small, but start.  Waiting until everything is just perfect can mean you’re waiting forever.  One small change motivates the next change, and the next one…

How to Detox Your Kitchen

This may not be the absolute best suggestion, but unless you’re radical and ready to make changes NOW, or have a medical reason for doing so, my first thought would be…

Eat it Up

Seriously.  Someone’s hard-earned dollars paid for the food on your shelves, and maybe tossing all into a garbage can isn’t the best way to start.  Gradual changes are often longer-lasting than radical overnight decisions anyway.

So maybe eat that last jar of this or that as you learn about healthier replacements.

Toss it Out

First of all, get rid of anything expired, stale or freezer-burnt.  If you’re going to eat it up, the food should be pleasing at least!  If it smells funny or looks weird…it’s off to the garbage (or garbage disposal or compost).  Then, decide what foods need to go for good.  

I would suggest removing from your shelves:

  • Anything fat-free or ‘light’.  These food have gone through a high degree of processing to remove the fat, and then to replace with food additives.  Not at all helpful to our bodies; read more about it here.
  • Hydrogenated oils or trans fats.  Oh my, I can’t say enough about how switching from bad fats to good ones made such a difference in helping our son with asthma symptoms!  We now use coconut oil and extra-virgin olive oil almost exclusively.  You could also use palm oil, lard, or beef tallow.
  • High-fructose corn syrup.  It’s in just about everything, but we don’t need it.
  • White flours, white sugar.  We do prefer a white/wheat mix, and I’m also including more gluten-free flours & grains as well (I think my body responds better to these).  For sweeteners, try those I listed in my pantry post.

  • Canned vegetables or fruit.  Go for fresh first or if not, frozen, which offers more nutrients since it’s been processed less.  Canned beans and tomatoes I keep on hand for busy days, but I’ve learned you can freeze cooked beans as well.
  • Processed meats.  Pastured, grass-fed, organic meats pack a punch nutrient-wise, but they can be expensive.  Try eating a little less meat overall, and getting rid of eating too many hot dogs, bacon, sausages, lunch meats or frozen meats such as ready-made chicken nuggets.  Occasional is okay (and we do have these sometimes!), but as a staple, these foods tax our bodies.
  • Fake dairy.  The real thing — real eggs from pastured chickens, real cream, real cheese and real butter from grass-fed or organically-fed cows is real food.  As you can, replace with better options for your freezer or fridge.

Replace with Real Food

This is being a bit redundant, but as you decide to get rid of eating the not-so-good-for-you foods, replace little by little.  I’ve already written up posts on these for your freezer and pantry!


This series is part of MANY other topics of iHomeschool Network’s Hopscotch – check them out!


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Janet Odom

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