The Brown family
We’ve talked alot so far about working into your family’s transition slowly and taking your time. But it is really a daunting task to look at all the vegetables out there and try to make heads or tails of which ones to buy organic and even when you buy them, what to do with them when you get them home!! Cindy and I have discovered that one of the easiest, most affordable, most informative options is to join an organic co-op. We’re members of Jim and Monica Brown’s Organic Coop. Check out our interview with them:
Dr. JB: “Jim and Monica, we’ve loved being members of your co-op and getting to know you guys over the past few years, tell us a little bit about how you guys first started moving your family into a organic, healthy lifestyle.”
Monica: First, let me say what a TREMENDOUS blessing it was for me to have Cindy (your super wife!) at our last birth! Cindy is an awesome midwife and I am thrilled to know she is expecting baby #2! Congratulations to you both! Second, let me say how GREAT it was to have you or Cindy adjust me throughout my last two pregnancies – chiropractic made a difference and I believe had a part to play in two awesome deliveries and speedy recoveries! As for the co-op, we love it, too! We have met so many wonderful people and that association has helped us stay on course with an overall healthy diet. We first started “going organic” by increasing the amounts of fruits and vegetables in our diet. We started out with conventional fruits and vegetables and when we saw how much better our health was, we began slowly to switch over to organic. Our primary motivation was our children. We began to realize that we were not characterized by good choices. We were eating fast food about 3 days each week and our children were gravitating toward hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza and soft drinks instead of more wholesome foods. Jim and I both had health challenges and things didn’t look like they were going to get better. We heard a health educator speak on the power of fruits and veggies and whole grains and we decided it would not hurt to try for 6 months to change to a diet RICH in vegetables and fruits. After 6 months, we decided to press on for 1 year. We were amazed with the changes that began taking place.
Dr. JB: “So what inspired you guys to start the Co-op and how did that happen?”
Monica: One night I was in a restaurant with several ladies I was in ministry with. We began talking about health and all of the women at that time were in their late twenties and early thirties. Out of the 7 women there, everyone of them spoke up about some kind of major challenge they were having related to their health. Two had experienced cancer already, 1 had challenges with her gums and would likely end up losing her teeth in the coming years. I had digestive issues since I could remember and challenges with my cycle. That evening changed my life as I thought about the conversations and about the new information I learned about how powerful fruits and vegetables could be in reversing many health related challenges. The Co-op formed after we saw changes in our life and our friends wanted to know more about what we were doing. We started having more and more people wanting to get healthier, so we began coordinating food for a small group that just continued to grow larger and larger.
Dr. JB: “What do you guys think are most people’s biggest hang-ups about trying to lead their families into an organic healthy lifestyle?”
Monica: I think cost is a factor and maybe belief. If you really believed it would make a difference and you believed you would reverse sickness, you would probably go for it. Maybe people are hung up on the idea that healthy doesn’t taste good. I know for a fact that healthy does taste good and there are hundreds of healthy things to eat that the average person would enjoy. I like to see people educate themselves because I believe the body will follow the mind. If you can get your head going in the right direction, your body will follow. .. eventually. I think another big hang up is all the information out there and we don’t know exactly what is true and which direction we should go. I don’t know the truth, either. I don’t know the one best way, but I can say my experience with eating a whole foods diet vs. eating the traditional American diet has been very beneficial and something I intend to maintain.
Dr. JB: “What is a typical cost for a family if they buy all organic at the grocery store vs getting most of their produce from a co-op like yours?”
Monica: Through the co-op, a mixed box of fruits and veggies is $50 every other week. That box of food is $15 to $20 less expensive than the same organic food from local stores. If we compare the co-op box with conventional food, the cost is very close to the same.
Dr. JB: “What would you suggest to people who perhaps don’t live within a pick-up area for your co-op? How do they “go organic” for their family?”
Monica: Little by little, change over your buying habits. Reduce meat and dairy consumption and reduce down packaged foods. If you reduce these foods and increase whole grains (brown rice, oatmeal, etc.) then you will have money left for buying more fruits and veggies and hopefully, more organic foods or products in general. Whole grains are inexpensive and easy to prepare.
So see, this is a perfect way to either start your family into healthy eating/living, or a way to help with your bottom line if you’ve been at this awhile and understand how it can be expensive after awhile. This has been one of the changes we made as a family that has made it so much easier to be proactive about eating healthy. Sometimes you just don’t have time to go to the grocery store so this is a great alternative. I’d really encourage you to check out their co-op and give it a try for your family. If you’re interested in joining The Brown’s Co-op, go to their website and contact them from there and you can get started today!! Big thanks to Monica Brown for granting me the interview!