2011 Salt Lake Sustainability Summit – Reconnecting to Natural Genius

I had a great time at the 2011 SLC Sustainability Summit yesterday. I went because I wanted to connect with other people who are interested in increasing awareness of and improving access to sustainably grown food. I was a little nervous that I wouldn’t have anyone to talk to; I was afraid everyone there would be all about renewable energy and green building, and other “scientific” things like that. It turns out that lots of people like to talk about how food is grown!

Since I don’t actually grow any food (if you need a plant killed, I’m your girl), I was over my head in most of the discussions about greenhouses and bugs and pests.

But then the topic turned to the idea of an individual or a community growing all of its own food. The self-sufficient folks at the table (not me) agreed they could produce pretty much all of the food needed for their family except grains. I had sat next to Amy Jordan during lunch, and we discussed my interesting lunch. I found out ahead of time that I wouldn’t be able to eat anything from the catered lunch menu, so I took my own. Amy wondered why I wasn’t eating the catered lunch, I explained my diet, and then she asked if my pancake was made out of tapioca. “Heck no! I can’t eat starches like that. It’s made out of almond flour. All of my baked goods are made out of nuts or coconut flour.”

So when grains came up during the sustainable food discussion, Amy piped up that I don’t eat grains. A few participants looked at me like I had three heads. Jonathan Krausert asked me what I do for carbohydrates. That’s easy! I eat veggies, fruit, and honey. Thoughtful nodding of heads ensued and then everyone continued talking about gardening.

I hadn’t considered that not eating grains might make my food choices a little more sustainable. That’s pretty cool. And it gives me even more reason to spread the word about eating grain-free!

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