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Wednesday, 22 January 2014 00:00

Roots CSA

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Roots CSA 2017

WHAT IS A CSA?

CSA stands for "Community Supported Agriculture." The members of the CSA are share-holders of the crops for the 10-week season they sign up for. A fee is paid to be part of the daily operation (usually a season prior to harvest) and that money is put towards reclaiming soil, crop rotation, compost preparation, seed harvesting/purchasing and general maintenance and upkeep of the gardening beds. The members share equally in the risks and benefits of the crops and have a decision-making role in the operations.IMG 2320veggies

Roots CSA (a division of Roots Childbirth®) is located on our family farm in Sumner County and everything is grown organically, free of artificial pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers.  Members of the Roots CSA can join our Facebook group to ask questions, schedule pick-ups, swap recipes and obtain resources about local organic gardening and healthy lifestyle opportunities in their community. The shareholders understand that by participating, they are purchasing the right to obtain vegetables, flowers and herbs that are harvested during the season they sponsor and the land owners are not responsible for what the shareholders do with the harvest (including ingesting or harvesting the seeds).

 

csa veggiesWHEN,WHERE & HOW:

Dates:June-August, Total Weeks 10

Variety:Vegetables (tomatoes, peppers, squash, cucumber, kale, beans, broccoli, zucchini, carrots, potatoes, okra, eggplant, onion and more)

Herbs (basil, oregano, parsley, rosemary, mint, lemon balm, thyme and more)

Pick-up location:199 McDougal Lane, 37148 (Friday afternoons or Saturday mornings, we will discuss specifics closer to CSA time). 

Quantity: Shares split between members evenly each week (apx. 1/2 bushel but quantity varies weekly)

Price:1 full share= $200.00

How to proceed:

  • $100.00 deposit secures your spot and you will be added to the FB page
  • Balance of $100 due by May 1st.
  • You can send a check to: 199 McDougal Lane, Portland 37148 or
  • Paypal to www.paypal.me/rootschildbirth  (if using PP, please select the "SENDING MONEY TO FAMILY/FRIENDS" option)
  • Let me know if you have any questions (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Published in Sustainable Health
Tuesday, 21 January 2014 00:00

Parenting & The Golden Rule

casey beachAnytime we look past what the world expects of us and into our hearts, we find truth...

 

And when we take that truth and turn it into an outward expression of kindness, that is love put into action. And to love… to truly love… takes courage.

 

 "Courage is the most important of all virtues. Without courage you can't practice any other virtue consistently. You can practice any virtue erratically, but nothing consistently without courage." Maya Angelou

 

So, as a new parent, where do you start? How can you be intentional, purposeful parents who lift your children up and give them strength and hope? Especially in a world that demands that we follow certain rules, accept certain truths and hand down expected forms of discipline when our children misbehave and don’t follow the rules? How do we wade through all the suggestions, recommendations, guidelines and opinions? With all the varying expert advice, how do we know if we’re doing it right? 

 

I will first say this: I don’t have all the answers.

austin beach

And I don’t think anyone on this side of Heaven really does. But, after almost 20 years of parenting, I will attempt to offer my humble opinion on the matter.  I believe that learning to be parents is no different than, and actually starts with, learning to give birth. God has instilled in your hearts the ability to parent just as naturally as He has equipped you to give birth. It’s instinctual. It’s natural. Just like pregnancy and birth, parenting brings with it so many questions. Just in the first 2 years you will likely face some of these: Breast or bottle? “Cry it Out” or Co-sleep? “Baby Led Weaning” or baby food? Cloth or disposable? Will you vaccinate? Pacifier or thumb? Time-out or spanking?  As your children grow, the questions don’t stop. How do you get them to eat their veggies? How do you encourage them to behave in public? How do you ensure they stay safe out of your sight? How do you make them “get along” with their siblings? If they don’t, do you put them in time out for 1 minute or 5? Then the teen-age years hit and if you are merely following a set of suggested guidelines, you have to review your system, check the books, talk to experts and devise another plan. Do you still spank or are there age limits on that? Will you ground them from their phone or their Playstation? Do they lose privileges for a day or a week? And for the real bad stuff, how do you implement this “Tough Love” thing your friends have told you about?

 

Whew… so many questions! Wouldn’t it be nice if there was one simple way to figure it all out? Well, maybe there is… After years of attempting to follow rules and take expert advice, what I have concluded works the best and reaps the healthiest results is a simple rule I learned when I was about 4 years old… The Golden Rule. Like with labor, I believe that we often over-complicate the most natural of things and what is left is an unrecognizable version of what God intended. I do believe that we often do this with relationships as well; especially with our children. I believe it’s done primarily out of fear and with the best of intentions. Society tells us to distrust the dependency that our children naturally express “for their own good,” and instead come up with guidelines to “manage” their needs. When you have a need from someone you love, would you rather have that need met, or managed? Your baby will have the same answer. We make things too complicated. If we insist on treating children differently than adults at what point do they suddenly change their operating system? Age 11? 14? 18? 21? No one can answer that because there’s no such thing. All humans operate the same way. In my opinion, parenting is a simple matter of applying the Golden Rule in every situation. Otherwise, its way too confusing and you will always be left wondering if you are making the right decision. I apply ALL the same rules to my children as I do in my relationships with any other human being in my life (and for that matter, animals and plants as well).

 

Here is a list of some of the rules my husband and I have adopted regarding our children (you may agree with some, all or none, again, this is what has worked for us):

 

1. We don’t hit them. Ever

2. We don’t bully them or call them names

3. We don’t embarrass or humiliate them

4. We don’t use guilt to coerce them into satisfying our requests

5. We don’t ask them to understand things beyond their level of comprehension

6. We don’t restrict them from speaking

7. We tell them the truth

8. We console them when they cry

9. We are attentive when they need our help

10. We extend them mercy instead of punishment when they make mistakes

 

 

 

I could go on, but I think you probably see the pattern here. It is undoubtedly the same rules you have for the way you would treat your boss, your friend, your wife or even me. austin and baileyChildren and adults are no different. They have the same needs and feelings. So what happens when those needs are not met? We have already learned by studying the labor process that interventions become necessary when something has interfered with the natural process (whether it’s an illness, medical condition or a technological convenience). Well, a primal need is part of the natural process of life. And when that is disturbed, it has to be met in other ways. I believe that all aggressive, manipulative, coercive and hurtful tendencies are birthed from unmet needs. It may be unmet needs by our friends, our spouse, our employer, or our parents. The human body will figure out a way to adapt to unmet needs, as a coping mechanism, if those needs are not met early on by the people who are naturally supposed to fulfill them.

 

           

The reason scripture says “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” is because our species, like other creatures in nature, learn our behavior from each other.  If the behavior that we use is neglectful, abusive and cruel, then that is the behavior that will eventually come back to us.  Make no mistake that your child will eventually treat you exactly like you treated him. I’ve seen it with my own eyes and believe me, nothing can be more beautiful or uglier than seeing a version of yourself reflected back to you years later… You get to pick which one you will see by the choices you make early on. The ONLY person you need validation from is your child; every single other person’s opinion is irrelevant compared to that. 

 

 But how do we really know we are applying these principals consistently? In order to decide whether any specific treatment of another person (of any age) is acceptable, ask yourself two questions:

 

  1. “What do I want this person to do that’s different from what they are doing now?”

 

If you ask that question alone then many forms of punishment may seem effective because fear and coercion will usually get an immediate response and altered behavior… but then ask yourself one more question…

 

  1. “What do I want this persons REASONS to be for doing what I’m asking?”

 

Punishment or coercion to elicit a behavior damages good will and self-esteem.

 

 

So you may ask, “Gaylea, how can we possibly maintain any level of order or routine in our household if I don’t teach my baby to become self-reliant? How will my children learn to behave without punishment? How can we maintain harmony without control?” I used to ask the same questions and honestly, I didn’t trust myself or my children enough early on to believe the answer that was always being whispered to me… the answer that was always in my heart. So, here it is:

 

A family’s foundation that is built on empathy, compassion, cooperation, patience, attentiveness, self-control, kindness and forgiveness will birth an inherent discipline that does not have to be enforced by punishment… because it is enforced by LOVE.

 

           bailey beach When I first started trusting myself and attempted to utilize compassion instead of punishment as my main base for parenting, I sought out resources. I read books, watched videos and asked questions. There seemed to be many “brands” of this style of parenting and just as many different people giving different forms of advice. I started to get confused again. I wasn’t sure if I was adopting “Attachment Parenting,” or “Empathetic Parenting.” I attempted to memorize advice given by Dr. Sears but found myself relying more on Dr. Seuss. I was again making things too complicated! Just like when I first chose to have “natural birth,” I didn’t want to take a class that was based heavily on memorization, learning a series of breath patterns or enforced strict rules about what I could and couldn’t do or say… that didn’t seem “natural” to me either. I felt like I was facing the same challenges with my quest to parent naturally. I began to get frustrated trying to learn this hip, “new age” parenting style, until I realized that it wasn’t new at all! It’s actually as old as time. Many of the things that I now recommend for new parents are practices that were considered to be the norm for thousands of generations and biblically considered to be the “Fruits of Spirit” (love, joy, kindness, gentleness, self-control, faith, goodness, patience and peace). They have only been questioned within the last 100 years. It all stems from simply believing in our hearts what we know to be true. Although I don’t believe you have to follow a set of guidelines and suggestions from a specific method to practice this type of parenting, there are a few things that I do believe really helps in growing a happy, healthy child:

 

 

 

doula and midwife supportFall in love with your baby by having a safe, healthy and positive birth experience. This will require preparation and commitment to learn about the birthing process and how to weigh benefits and risks of common maternity pitfalls.

Breastfeed (if you can) your baby until he no longer needs it. Breast feeding strengthens the immune system and produces hormones for babies that assist with sleep and relaxation. Breast-feeding also produces hormones in mom that help with patience and loving, making the job of parenting a little easier. When your child is older continue to provide whole food, balanced nutrition. Children often misbehave because they are hungry, thirsty or have received inadequate nutrition (just like adults quite frankly). This can include sugar and certain chemicals and dyes often found in popular foods marketed for children. 

eveKeep your child with you and close to you as much as possible. The following are practices that I utilized (and still utilize) to keep my child as close to me as possible from the time of birth (homebirth, baby wearing, co-sleeping, homecare and homeschooling). Each family will have to decide what works best for them.

Respond quickly and compassionately to your child. Examples are holding your baby when he cries and stopping what you are doing to look him in the eye, on his level, when he asks a question. You can’t love your child too much!

Use love instead of punishment for teaching and behavior modification. Punishment damages the relationship between parent and child and when we make a child afraid we stop learning dead in its tracks. We are designed, as human beings, to instinctively want to protect and cherish each other. We must be taught how to be unmerciful.  Bearing witness to the truth, regardless of how inconvenient or uncomfortable it might be, can be done by anyone.  Parenting is the most profound way of bearing witness in my opinion. And because of the significance that God has placed on parenting, I think the way we witness has the potential to shift humanity. Human life is a supreme gift, no matter whose life it is, and it must be appreciated, defended, and honored at all costs.

Finally, remember a little thing called grace. Extend it to others freely and to yourself often.

 

 

There are no perfect parents. There are no perfect people. We make mistakes. Punishing OURSELVES for those mistakes is no more effective or reasonable than punishing our children. We MUST forgive ourselves and understand that at any given moment, we all do the best we can with the information and inner strength we have at that moment. Forgiveness is critical in my opinion. It releases us from the crippling emotion of guilt and shame and gives us the freedom and confidence to parent with love and compassion. It also teaches our children the importance of grace, forgiveness and mercy.

 

  “Don’t give up, I believe in you all… A person’s a person, no matter how small.” Dr. Seuss

 

 

 

Published in Parenting
Tuesday, 07 January 2014 17:08

GROWING: Do Not Disturb

casey and flowerheart        I am a mom of 3 boys... I know a thing or two about being interrupted. Seems like every time I sit down to have a deep, meaningful conversation with my husband, one of our boys will run into the room, desperately needing to tell us something or the phone rings or we hear something break or someone cry. Conversations that start and end without interruption are rare. Between homeschooling, gardening, teaching childbirth classes and being available for the many births that I am called to attend, my thoughts are scattered to say the least. My daily goal is to finish one complete thought and execute one complete task without being interrupted. 

 

And I know I'm not alone. Most of you will be interrupted at least 25 times before even finishing this post. Probably a thousand times before you go to bed. And each time it happens you get that clenched-fist, eye-squinting, tongue-biting feeling of "seriously?," directed at the person who just interrupted you. Whether it's that car that just cut in front of you, or that lady at the grocery store who just nonchalantly wheeled her cart in front of you at the checkout lane, or that friend who keeps finishing your sentences so she can hurry up and tell you what's on her mind, or your child... your sweet sweet child, who just refuses to let you have a phone conversation or even 2 minutes alone in the bathroom without needing your immediate attention. Interruption is everywhere!

 

But let's admit it, we're all guilty right? Why do we feel the need to interject so often? Think back to a time when you stopped someone mid-sentence. Didn't you think that what you had to say was so crucial to the conversation that it had to be voiced immediately? That your point was more important? That your wise words would significantly enhance the conversation? I think that's it exactly. We believe that what we have to offer is valuable and that our help warrants the interruption. And it's not just in conversation... 

 

    csa veggies 

Besides growing little people, I also grow plants and animals. I run a small CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) on our family farm and I grow organic veggies from seeds. I also grow and raise chickens and bees. One thing that they all have in common is that they also do not like to be interrupted. In fact, interruption can compromise most organisms' ability to grow, self-regulate and sustain life on their own by interfering with the organic design. Have you ever watched a baby chick emerge from its shell?

 

 

 

Here is an explanation of the 21 day process: 

     

     After laying still and warm for 2 weeks, between the 15th and 16th day, the chick orients itself so that its head is near the air cell at the large end of the egg. Not long before the chick is ready to attempt to make its way out of the shell its neck acquires a double bend so that its beak is under its right wing and pointed toward the air cell. About the 19th day the chick thrusts its head forward. Its beak quickly breaks the inner shell membrane, and the chick's lungs begin to function. Complete breathing by the lungs doesn't occur until the 20th day.

 

     Using its egg tooth (a tiny, sharp projection on its beak), the chick pecks the shell thousands of times. Finally, the young bird pips its way through the shell and begins to breathe air directly from the outside. After the chick has made a hole in the shell, it stops for three to eight hours and rests. During this time, it is acclimating its lungs to the outside atmosphere. After the resting stage is completed, the second stage of pipping begins.

 

     The chick begins to turn slowly inside the egg. As it turns, usually counter-clockwise, the cutting edge of the chick tooth continues to chip away. In two-five hours, the chick has made a three quarter turn inside the egg. As the chick progresses around the shell, it begins pushing on the egg cap (large end). Squirming and struggling, the chick works feverishly for about 40 minutes pushing at the cap. Finally with a vigorous shove, the chick breaks free from the shell, still wet and panting.

 

     When the chick is freed completely from the shell, it lies very still. Its energy has been exhausted, and it is extremely tired. After a rest, the chick begins to rise to its feet and gain coordination of its muscles. Within a few days the egg tooth, its usefulness over, will disappear.

 

chickensSo of course any compassionate individual who may be witnessing this process would want to help the baby chick right? She has to peck a THOUSAND times! I mean, she's struggling poor thing and surely with our knowledge and strength we can speed up the process and help this baby chick emerge faster and without using up so much of her energy... Right??

 

Wrong.

     

Every step of this painstaking process is important and paves the way for the next. If we interfere with or manipulate ANY of these steps the bird will most likely die. She needs to go through the entire process to be strong enough to live outside her shell.

 

 

So what about a seed? Surely a seed, with no brain, lungs or eye tooth would need a little help right? I mean how can it possibly navigate through the dark unknown soil and find light and water to grow? Well, inside each seed is a collection of chemicals and hormones designed to nourish and protect the plant. A seed can lay dormant for a long period of time until it has exactly what it needs for germination. This design is to ensure the safety of the embryo. All plant embryos respond to a combination of triggers that cause chemical changes within the seed; light, water and warmth from the soil all provide the respiratory and metabolic cues for the embryo to wake up and start its new life. Once a seed has enough warmth and wetness, the embryo inside grows and breaks through the seed casing and follows its innate yearning for light. After the new sprout has exhausted the seed casing's nutrient supply the hard shell will drop off. At this point the new sprout, through the process of germination, should be strong and mature enough to generate its own energy through photosynthesis and its roots capable of providing hydration from the soil.

 

 

IMG 2319

Man, I can tell you this, it takes a lot of patience waiting on these little seedlings. For days and sometimes weeks you can water, watch and wait  on that first glimpse of green. For that first sign. That first flicker of life. And then it happens... a tiny speck of green under the brown soil. Then a gradual rise as the soil swells up under the pressure of what is emerging underneath.

 

 

 


IMG 2315Then as the soil separates you finally see the tiny shape of a leaf, still under the protective covering of its shell, nestled on a stem. You have waited so long... and it's so tempting to brush the dirt off of the fragile leaves, remove the hard casing and help it stand upright. Just like with the baby chick, it just seems like the benevolent thing to do.
We are smarter and know what's best for this little plant. We have tools and technology. We have studied the biology and ecology and understand the process of its growth inside and out. Surely this little plant would do nothing but offer us thanks in the form of delicious fruit for all of our help, right? 

 

 

wren after c-sectionWe have gotten so helpful in fact that as I write this today, 1 out of every 3 human babies in the United States will be born via cesarean section (major abdominal surgery) and depending on which report you look at, our national induction rate is apx. 28% (The World Health Organization recommends a less than 10% induction rate for an industrialized nation), as high as 51% for some American hospitals and as high as 78% for some specific providers.  Although human beings are no different than plants and chickens in their need for adequate gestation time and a healthy amount of work through the process of birth to provide the strength and maturity they need to live outside the womb, we have taken the liberty to bring them out sooner and smaller. Here's what we have noticed however, since becoming so helpful: increased rates of maternal and fetal death, increased rates of autism (and all spectrum disorders), increased rates of hypoglycemia, infection, respiratory distress, asthma, allergies, ADD and ADHD, diabetes, jaundice, neurological impairment, lower APGAR scores, developmental delays and infertility. Can't you just imagine that little baby fist raised up saying, "seriously?" just like we do when we are interrupted?

 

The increased rates of these complications and illnesses above are not surprising when you consider the fact that even a chicken embryo and a seed (both requiring way less cell division and gestation time for development than a human being) do not thrive when interrupted. Inducing labor is a dynamic process that requires additional medical interventions to keep mom and baby safe from the very potent synthetic chemicals that are given to initiate contractions. These interventions can often times restrict the mothers movement, include a cocktail of medications that have never been tested for safety on humans (especially a tiny developing baby) when all combined, cause the labor to last much longer adding stress to mom and baby and impair the mothers judgement and her ability to provide informed consent. The rates of shoulder dystocia, forceps/vacuum delivery and c-section are all increased with induction. 

 

Collateral damage in a season of impatience and interruption... We have traded patience for "progress."

 


casey strawberriesBut what if we waited? Waited our turn. Waited for nature to finish what  it started. Waited out the boring details of the conversation. Waited to see what happens without our help. Without our interruption... Have you ever listened to a young child try to explain something? With a limited vocabulary but limitless excitement, they describe and explain, with hand gestures and eyes wide open, they try desperately to communicate their thoughts into an understandable string of sentences and adjectives. And as we sit listening, we want to help. Fill in a word here or there. Correct a pronunciation. Provide a correct context. Finish the story when they seem to be struggling with the ending. But what happens when we wait? When we let them describe and explain in their own grammatically incorrect words. Let them tell the punch line or finish the ending. More than likely, what we will hear from that little mouth will bless us a thousand times more than the help we think we are providing to them.

 

My boys are 18, 16 and 6. Their innocence still dances in my ears.  

 

So Maybe nature is trying to tell us something...

baby catcherMaybe its asking us to stop interrupting and just watch and listen. Humbly bear witness to what it has to offer instead of trying to justify why it needs our help.

 

We may get a glimpse of glory... a taste of grace... a momentary miracle...

 

We may see the world with organic innocence. Through the eyes of a child. And we may, just may, be much better off...  

 

"Adopt the peace of nature; her secret is patience." Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

 

References: 

http://whqlibdoc.who.int/publications/2011/9789241501156_eng.pdf

www.hencigoer.com 

www.backyardchickens.com 

 

 

 

Saturday, 04 January 2014 00:42

Cheers to Cheerios!

 

 

     With the President giving special privileges to Monsanto and congress passing bills to be signed into law concealing GMO ingredients by big Corporations, the recent news of Cheerios going back to their original formula of using non-GMO ingredients is making some families pretty excited.  

 

cheerios picBut what does GMO mean and why is there a concern?

 

GMO= Genetically Modified Organism: Huh??

 

     For many years, humans have been modifying organisms through the practice of selective breeding. Sweet corn, seedless grapes, purebred dogs, your neighbor's prize rosebush, carving pumpkins, low cost vaccinations and Christmas trees are all examples of how humans have selectively enhanced desirable traits in other living beings for their own benefit.

     But the type of genetic enhancement that generates the most concern goes a step further. Instead of just modifying an existing organism, we are now transferring genes between 2 different organisms. For example, the tomato plant's pest resistance relies on a gene from a bacterium (Bacillus thuringiensis), which is injected into the tomato plant's genome. This gene, called cry1Ac, encodes a protein that is poisonous to certain living organisms thus keeping away the pests. Corn is another example, and serves to be one of the most modified plants in the United States. Corn varieties resistant to glyphosate herbicides were first commercialized in 1996 by Monsanto, and are known as "Roundup Ready Corn" because they tolerate the use of Roundup herbicide. Bt corn is another variety of that has been genetically altered to express proteins from the Bacillus thuringiensis bacteria, a bacterium that is toxic to many pests. Monsanto also developed the soybean expressing Cry1Ac and the glyphosate-resistance gene.

 

     This type of genetic engineering offers a time-saving method for producing larger crops with less effort and expense on the part of the farmer. More efficient and higher yields. Sounds great right? But usually anything that provides us with instant convenience also invites at least a few risks. And changing the genetic makeup of an organism is no exception.

 

So what are the risks?

 

     A primary concern is not being able to prevent the genetically-modified versions from mixing with the naturally existing populations of plants from which they're derived, ultimately creating an entire population of genetically modified versions of the plants we used to know. Plants rely on the transfer of pollen, via insects or the air, to breed and produce offspring, and it's difficult to control how they cross-breed in the wild. It is also unknown at this time how dangerous these genetically modified plants are to the insects that help pollinate them, but the sudden decrease of the honey bee population and many reports nationwide of sick birds and fish do give us some insight into how wildlife may be reacting to the increase of the GMO population. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations require farmers who plant Bt corn to plant non-Bt corn nearby (called a "refuge") to provide a location to harbor vulnerable pests.

 

     The theory behind these refuges is to slow the evolution of resistance to the pesticide and give a safe place for vulnerable pests to live. EPA regulations also require seed companies to train farmers how to maintain refuges, to collect data on the refuges and to report that data to the EPA. A study of these reports found that from 2003 to 2005 farmer compliance with keeping refuges was about 90%, but that by 2008 that number dropped to about 25%, raising concerns that resistance will develop over time.

 

     And wildlife is not alone. Human reports of disease and illness since GMO ingredients have been introduced into our foods, beverages and cosmetics, have sky rocketed. We have even been introduced to some brand new human disease process that never existed before human consumption of GMOs began.

 

     casey and carrotToxicity or allergic reactions is the most prevalent. Many people, especially children, suffer from an array of food allergies including nuts, wheat, eggs and dairy products. The rate of food allergy in our country has increased dramatically in the last 2 decades with approximately 25 million Americans suffering from some sort of food allergy and 1/3 of those being at high risk for life-threatening anaphylaxis. There is concern that the protein products of these introduced genes may be extremely toxic to certain individuals. Other individuals, may only notice headache, skin irritations, bowel irregularities, weight gain and glucose intolerance.

     

     It has been estimated that 70 percent of all processed foods in the United States contain at least one genetically modified ingredient - usually a product of soy plants and corn. There are initiatives afoot to require food manufacturers to provide clear labeling on processed food products that contain genetically modified ingredients. This would make it easier for people with allergies to avoid foods that might pose a danger to them, and it would allow those who oppose genetically modified foods to opt out of buying them. So far, these initiatives have not been taken serious by congress and the lobbyists for the big food corporations keep winning on Capitol Hill while America gets sicker and sicker. So, unlike countries such as Australia and Japan, the United States currently has no laws requiring companies to label products containing genetically modified ingredients.

 

     But now Cheerios has taken a step forward and given consumers what they have asked for. I’m not under any false illusion that they had a change of heart or all of a sudden cared deeply about the sustainability of their manufacturing practices and the environmental impact they have on our world. But what I do think is that they heard a demand, calculated the financial risk of not answering that demand and made a choice.

 

And to be honest, it was a very easy choice.

 

     All it took for this to happen was for them to go BACK TO THEIR ORIGINAL FORMULA! If you ever wonder why your grandparents "could eat that and they didn't get cancer/ diabetes/ heart disease/ Alzheimers/ fill in the blank," it's because your grandparent’s food (even if purchased by the same name) was NOT what we eat today. They ate whole wheat bread and eggs and oatmeal and even Cheerios with milk and didn’t develop celiac disease, asthma, childhood cancers, food allergies, ADHD and lactose intolerance. They ate these foods before they were genetically modified for our convenience. 

 

    veggies But the move made by Cheerios reminded me that we still can go back to when food was food and plants were plants. We can get back to our Roots! We're are already seeing many areas where WE are breaking down these unhealthy, money hungry systems one by one and demanding that they give us healthier, more sustainable options. Several name brand soft drinks have gone back to their original recipe by taking out high fructose corn syrup at the request of the consumer and replacing it with real sugar, Baptist Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee (delivers more babies than any other hospital in the state per year and up until recently was not considered by most birth professionals to be “mother-baby friendly”) has implemented a doula program, hired staff midwives and put laboring tubs in the delivery rooms at the demand of the consumer and evidence-based research. And now Cheerios… going back to their original non-gmo formula after cereal buyers across the nation said very loudly what they were willing to spend their money on. But we can do better. We can do more. Let this give you confidence that your voice is being heard! Keep showing them with your pocket book that you are worth more. They will sell us what we are willing to buy. They will treat us however we let them treat us. Let's keep on expecting more, sticking up for ourselves, our children and generations we haven't met yet. Cheers to you Cheerios and cheers to you the consumers! Keep living loud; the world is listening.

Published in Sustainable Health

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