You are what you eat/ate


What we now know about food, particularly meat but also vegetables, is that it’s not just the meat you’re eating, it’s what that animal ate when it was being reared that really matters.

I get questioned a lot on the value of organic food and I say this to you now, “I don’t want to eat a cow that’s been fed junk, it’s been fed corn or grain.” There’s a huge environmental impact to feeding our animals corn and grain anyway. I want to eat a grass-fed cow if I’m going to have some beef.  I also want to eat animal that’s been organically raised, that’s been free-ranging, and was a happy animal; as happy as it could be, knowing well, ultimately, it’s going to get slaughtered and eaten.

One of the reasons for that, if you don’t care about some of the other moral and philosophical issues, is that an animal that’s been unkindly treated, and is very stressed when it was put to death, is going to be riddled with a stress hormone cortisol. That affects the quality and the taste of the meat.

I think it’s important to think about what you eat/ate and go back one step in the food chain. It’s the same for vegetables, I don’t want to eat vegetables that have been sprayed with herbicides and pesticides. That’s just not good for us, we know that has an impact on our endocrine system, which is the body’s hormones, we know that it can cause a lot of problems.  I avoid vegetables that have been sprayed, in fact I’m in the process of growing my own. We have ordered a vegetable box now for two or three weeks, which is very pleasing.

The ultimate message here is, think about the provenance of the food and consider provenance over price. Try not to get swept into the buy three for two and the cheapness of food, the way it’s marketed to us now. Think about spending a little bit more on a really good quality grass-fed piece of beef, for example. Or some well reared organic free-range chicken.

Nothing that’s been sprayed on, nothing that was very stressed, products that have just genuinely been looked after. And focus on that when you’re eating a meal as well, slow it all down, chew and eat mindfully, really enjoy having the best food that you can possibly give yourself.

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Leanne Spencer is an entrepreneur, coach, TEDx Speaker, author of Remove the Guesswork, and founder of Bodyshot Performance Limited. Bodyshot is a health and fitness consultancy that helps busy professionals get more energy by removing the guesswork around their health, fitness and nutrition. Visit or email to register your interest in our services and connect with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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