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Yesterday I did a post, Common Questions and Myths About Living A Healthy Lifestyle (Part 1)!  If you haven’t had a chance to read this post, you can  click here to read it.

To recap, I have a friend who is trying to start living a healthier lifestyle, but he had a few questions for me first.

Yesterday I went over his first 5 questions and today I am concluding with his last 5 questions.

6.  I don’t have any Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s in my city…looks like I have to eat processed meat?


You don’t need a Whole Foods or a Trader Joe’s to eat healthy.  I have both here in Milwaukee and I very rarely shop there. You have several options here.

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  • Buy from your local farmers markets.  There are so many great deals at farmers markets.  You can find local meats, cheeses, eggs, vegetables, fruits and many other goodies.  The food is fresh and grown locally and you have direct access to the farmers where you can ask questions about how they grow their food.
  • Join a co-op.  Knowing the source of the foods you eat, the services you employ and the products you purchase are just a few of the benefits of joining a cooperative.   A cooperative exists to serve its members, but what makes co-ops unique is that the members are also the owners.
  • Buy a CSA share.  A CSA is a community -supported agriculture program.  For about $25 a week, I have enough produce to get me through the week.  Different sizes of boxes are available for different sizes of families.
  • Buy from local farmers.  I buy my organic grass fed beef, free range chickens, pastured pork, raw milk and eggs from local farmers.  Not only are you supporting your local farmers and small businesses, but you know where your source of food is coming from also.  I take comfort knowing that my food is not coming on a truck from hundreds of miles away but is coming from a local farmer!  To find a list of your local farmers, visit The Weston A Price Foundation.

7.  How bad can a $.99 McChicken really be?


Oh my I could create a whole post on this question alone, but I will try to keep this short  :-)

You ask how bad could it be?….Real bad!  A McChicken isn’t even food in my opinion!  Rule of thumb, if you can’t pronounce the ingredients, then you need to stay away from it!  Let see what is in a McChicken.

McChicken Patty
Chicken, water, salt, sodium phosphates. Battered and breaded with: bleached wheat flour, water, wheat flour, food starch-modified, salt, spices, partially hydrogenated soybean oil and cottonseed oil with mono -and diglycerides, egg whites, wheat gluten, paprika, dextrose, leavening (sodium acid pyrophosphate, baking soda, monocalcium phosphate, ammonium bicarbonate), garlic powder, yeast, natural flavor (plant source) with extractives of paprika. Prepared in vegetable oil ((may contain one of the following: Canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, hydrogenated soybean oil, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, partially hydrogenated corn oil with TBHQ and citric acid added to preserve freshness), dimethylpolysiloxane added as an antifoaming agent). CONTAINS: WHEAT AND EGG

Take a good look at what is in this so-called sandwich!  It takes almost 100 ingredients (92 to be exact) to make this sandwich.

I did not list the ingredients for the sauce and the bun, this post would just be too darn long!

You can get the picture with just the chicken…  There is nothing “whole” or “real” about this sandwich.  If you can’t recognize the ingredients, then most likely your body won’t recognize this as food either and you are doing more harm to your body by ingesting this sandwich!

Please do yourself and your body a favor and stay away from McDonalds!

8.  Subway says eat fresh…so a $5 footlong is healthy for me right?


Good question.  Oftentimes many people fall for this false advertisement.

Subway does a great job promoting their product as fresh and healthy, but is it?

No, in my opinion you should avoid subway as well.  The meat that is used in subway sandwiches are extremely processed and most likely come from unwell animals.  The animals are most likely given a constant dose of antibiotics to keep the animals alive.

You in turn are consuming this unhealthy meat which can cause you more harm than good.  In addition, the bread is most likely made with genetically modified grains, another foreign substance to your body!

Fresh is best, but sometimes you just need to eat out and quick!  I understand that.

There are restaurants out there that focus on real healthy ingredients and fresh healthy meats.  Do some research to find these restaurants in your area.

Although I rarely eat food from fast food chains, when I am out and don’t have a choice, I head to Chipotle.  This company really cares about the quality of food and how that food is raised.  You can watch this short video about where we use to be, where we are now and how we need to go back to the start.

9.  I love hot dogs…are there even healthy hot dogs out there?


Again, I got quite the chuckle out of this question.  There are healthy hot dogs out there.

I like to purchase from the company Applegate Farms.  They produce an organic hot dog that is made with wholesome ingredients and without  nitrites and nitrates.

These are some of the best hot dogs I have tasted and grill up very nicely.  You can also check with your local butcher to see if they have grass-fed hot dogs.

It is important to note that you need this healthy lifestyle to work with your current lifestyle.  There are times when you are going to head to a neighborhood BBQ and they aren’t going to have grass fed burgers or organic hot dogs.  That is okay!

I live by the 80/20 rule.  If you eat right 80% of the time, you can absorb the other 20%!

10.  I don’t have time to make food at home…I am always working…it’s just faster to heat up a pizza right?


When starting a healthy lifestyle, many become so overwhelm by how time-consuming it is to make your own food.  I cook for a living and I can tell you, I do not spend all day in the kitchen.

The key to transitioning to this lifestyle is to plan ahead.  I ALWAYS cook more than I need!

Last night I made Lemon Pepper Shrimp Kabobs (recipe coming out this week) and instead of cooking up the 1 pound of shrimp that would feed my family, I cooked up 2 pounds of shrimp instead.  I also cooked up some extra quinoa.

For breakfast this morning I had some quinoa and bacon and then for lunch I had leftover shrimp and some fresh fruit.

I did not cook for breakfast or lunch, and I will get back into the kitchen again tonight to cook a big meal that will carry into the next day.  By doing this, you save a lot of time in the kitchen!

That concludes this Q& A session.  I hope you enjoyed this!  If you should have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments section below this post.

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7 thoughts on “Common Questions & Myths About Living A Healthy Lifestyle (Part 2)!”

  1. StevePascarella says:

    Two good places that have excellent hot dogs are US Wellness Meats and Prescott Frost.

    1. hallecottis says:

       @StevePascarella Thanks Steve…I haven’t tried either for hot dogs but I have tried other products from US Wellness meats and you are right…great company!

  2. Rich Boes says:

    Too bad most people will never take the time to learn this.

  3. Real_Food_Freak says:

    I often opt for brats instead of hot dogs these days.  I never really liked hot dogs even before my real food days, so it was no loss for me not to eat them.  But I love brats! :)
    These are great tips for newbies, thanks!  I am sharing this on Pinterest!

    1. hallecottis says:

       @Real_Food_Freak We are home of the Brats here in the Milwaukee area :)  I am sure I can find a healthy Brats here somewhere!  Will be out on the lookout.  Thanks for sharing  with your Pinterest followers, I appreciate it!

  4. hifromheather says:

    I am a huge fan of cooking in large quantities. I always joke that I should have had 12 kids, because I don’t even know how to cook for 2 people at all. When making a lasagna, why not make 3? I cook 3 meals a day, but I’m only in the kitchen maybe 35-60 minutes a night. I also make just about everything from scratch, down to the condiments, and it really is all about planning ahead. I couldn’t survive without my menu plan. Menu planning also saves you a ton of money!

  5. Questioner says:

    Curious about the McChicken. You state that it isn’t food because there are a lot of ingredients and some of them have long names.

    Regarding the number of ingredients, almost all of these are simple ingredients that any home cook would use to make their chicken palatable: paprika, oils, egg whites, garlic powder, leavening, dextrose, salt, etc.

    Regarding the ingredients with long names, dimethylpolysiloxane and TBHQ are preservatives deemed safe by scientists in Europe and the USA. They probably won’t be present in a freshly slaughtered chicken, but that shouldn’t keep someone away from the value and conenience of McDonalds if the only concern is health.

    The whole food movement would reach more people if it weren’t for alarmists. Studies show that whole food is great and better nutritionally than fast food, but assuming a person routinely meets their nutritional needs, eats in moderation and gets a decent amount of exercise daily, the difference in whole food versus fast food is subtle to non-existant. Please feel free to show me studies that show otherwise.

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