Welcome to my blog. Let me introduce myself. My name is Kerrie and I live in Sydney, Australia. From a very early age, I developed a passion for all things Food. I had an amazing Grandmother who was an incredible cook. She would always make our favourite Coconut Butter Cake or Lemon Delicious Pudding when she knew we were visiting. To this day, the smell of freshly baked scones still brings back memories of walking into her kitchen and finding a freshly baked K shaped scone that she had made just for me, next to an R scone for my brother. Crunchy on the outside, warm and soft in the middle, smothered in butter and strawberry jam there was nothing quite like it. No wonder I fell in love with baking as I grew older.
When I was just a child back in the late 1970’s, whenever Grandma heard we weren’t feeling well she would spend a day cooking, then come over to our house with bowls of hot, clear Beef Broth, which were sure to have us back on our feet in no time. I always thought there was something special about Grandma’s food and as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realised what. In those days, people made real food from scratch, not much came out of a packet or a freezer. The intensely flavoured Beef Broth that cured our ills was made carefully over hours, slowly simmering beef bones and vegetables till all the goodness was extracted. The broth was then very carefully strained to ensure the stock was completely clear but full of all the vital nutrients from the fresh ingredients. This was her secret!!
My mother encouraged me to learn as much as I could about food. When I was in high school, she always seemed happy with the multitude of exotic dishes I presented to her on a Wednesday afternoon after a day of cooking in Home Economics class. From Chocolate Blancmange to Lamb Kofta, we tried all sorts of new dishes and ingredients. With her endless encouragement, I began my journey into food after graduating from High School.
I completed a Tafe course where I learnt the basics of cookery, food service and the skills to run a successful catering business. Through this course I developed an interest in recipe development, food demonstrating and food photography. I began working in restaurants and cafés as a cook and waitress to earn extra cash. For those of you who have worked in the hospitality industry you’ll know that the work is hard and involves long hours. The experience I gained however was invaluable. To be able to prepare food for hundreds of guests and knowing your way around a commercial kitchen is quite different from preparing a meal for three in your own home. You learn a lot of tricks and see a lot of things along the way. It was at 3am one morning, while scrubbing dirty pans that I decided I wanted to know more about the food I was preparing so I signed up to complete a Bachelor of Food Science and Technology at Queensland University.
After graduating as a Food Scientist, I worked for the first seven years managing research and development teams manufacturing products from red meat, smallgoods and poultry. During this time I worked in abattoirs, labs and processing factories. I was responsible for all aspects of launching new food products onto the market. For the past eleven years, I’ve juggled having two children with working in technical sales roles. These have allowed me to work as a food scientist, providing technical support and product knowledge on a broad range of food ingredients used in the manufacture of food and beverage products. I have the pleasure of working with other food scientists, chefs and quality and marketing staff from all types of businesses from small family owned companies to big Multi-Nationals across the country. My experience working with food manufacturers and processers has given me direct insight into how our food is made. Also, more importantly, what is in our food and why it’s in our food? This is part of the reason I wanted to write this blog.
My hope is that this blog will be used as a tool to educate fellow food lovers about the foods they purchase for themselves and their families to consume and enjoy every day. Too often we hear in the media about health issues now impacting us not just locally, but globally. Countries across the world are now having to deal with skyrocketing increases in diabetes, ever increasing rates of childhood obesity, and the health impacts of high sugar consumption throughout the general population. These critical issues impact not just on our own health and longevity, but the health of our children and essentially the future of our families. Our children in particular have the right to live long and healthy lives. They rely on us as their parents to make these healthy choices for them as they grow into adulthood. Being a parent of two young girls, I know how difficult this can be on a daily basis and without the knowledge behind you, this can be a daily struggle.
When I think back to Grandma’s healing Beef Broth, I realise that back then food was seen as a way of nourishing the body and the soul. I truly feel we have lost this connection in our busy modern lives. I don’t believe this is something we have to lose. It’s a choice we make every day for ourselves. That’s fine if you live alone. You are responsible just for your own choices. The critical thing is, the person in the household that does the shopping and the cooking is often the one that chooses the foods to bring or not to bring into the household. It’s a decision being made for each member of the family as well. That person has the power to give each of the family members the lifelong gift of good health or a legacy of illness. It’s essential to have knowledge about the food and beverages you choose to consume every day .”Knowledge is Power” and that saying could not be truer when it comes to you and your family’s health.
I have written this blog to address two main areas. The first area is called Food Science Facts and it’s been put together to provide information and education on the ingredients found in everyday processed foods. I feel very passionately about educating readers such as yourself and everyday consumers to understand what is in the foods you love to eat and drink, why those ingredients are present and what function they perform. Then you will have the knowledge to make informed choices, whether it be on the weekly grocery shop or when you’re running late to get dinner on the table after a long day. I am not here to tell you what to do or to judge your choices, merely to give you the education and knowledge to make informed decisions. Life is busy and eating well can be challenging.
The second section called Healthy Eating – Low Carb is information on those same ingredients but from a different perspective. I myself am a self-confessed, life-long carbohydrate addict spending the last twenty-four years of my life overweight and on diets with no success until now. Low fat, low calorie, excessive exercise, nothing worked. After researching, talking to others in the industry, and gaining more knowledge about how our bodies process the foods we eat, I have spent the past ten months of 2017 on a low carbohydrate, moderate protein diet and I have lost 20kg over that time. Before I started, I couldn’t get out of bed without my ankles and feet hurting. I had no energy, low self-esteem, no self-worth and had developed numerous medical conditions as a result of my obesity with Diabetes close on the horizon. As a full time working mum with two young children I just couldn’t do it anymore. I started my new approach to healthy eating in early January 2017 when I drew a line in the sand after New Year’s Eve and said, “Enough is Enough”.
I have had other mothers ask me to share the details of my success which is another reason for creating this blog. I want to share my recipes, meal plans and other information on low carbohydrate diets with you all. “Knowledge is Power”. This saying couldn’t be truer when it comes to our everyday routines around snacking and mealtimes. The more information you have about the foods you consume on a daily basis, the more able you are to make good choices for the longterm health, nutrition and longevity of yourselves and your families.
I’m writing this blog from a basic food science perspective so it’s easy to understand. You can find more information with links provided on each topic for those who wish to delve a little deeper. I’m sure we’ll debunk some of the myths along the way and highlight some of the health issues that are shaping our future not only here in Australia but overseas as well. I hope you find this information useful. Please contact me if you would like to share your own experiences or if you have any questions. I look forward to joining you on this journey!!!
Copyright 2018 Food Facts for Healthy Eating