I have more stuff to say (and photos to blog) about traveling and eating right, but by request, I interrupt:
Dear GreenSmoothieGirl, will you please continue the good, better, best discussion, specifically covering pasta, seasonings, nut butters, and fats?
Pasta: white-flour pasta doesn’t belong in the kitchen of a health-conscious cook. The more coarsely you grind your wheat, the more nutritious it is, since the blood sugar uptake is slower. Good: whole-wheat pasta Better: whole-spelt or -kamut pasta (ancient, unhybridized grains) Best: homemade pasta made from ground whole grains, soaked 8-24 hours in advance (too time-consuming for me, but some like to do this)
Nut butters: grocery-store peanut butter has trans fats and sugar added. Good: organic, natural peanut butter Better: roasted almond butter Best: unsalted, homemade raw almond butter made from soaked, raw, dehydrated almonds (I put them through the Champion Juicer with the blank plate on)
Fats: almost everything sold in the grocery store is refined, high-heat treated and rancid. Good: extra-virgin olive oil, other unrefined oils (mostly found in health-food stores) Better: virgin/organic coconut oil, refrigerated flax oil, unrefined grapeseed oil Best: whole foods high in good fats like avocados, nuts, and seeds
Seasonings: many in the grocery store have MSG added even if you don’t see it on the label, as well as sugar and refined salt, and other chemicals. Good: unrefined sea salt (50+ trace minerals, still actually very slightly refined) Better: Original Himalayan Crystal Salt (84 trace minerals), Mrs. Dash Best: Kelp, herbs like basil, thyme, oregano, salt-free and chemical-free organic seasonings like anything by Spice Hunter at your health-food store