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Old 20-02-2006, 20:41   #1
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Healthier Diets Aboard?

Ookay.. So I guess I had this grand idea in my head that sailing could possibly get my diet more in check. By this I mean eating less processed foods.

But in my reading, it seems as if, the case is opposite. Sailors load up ( I guess when they can) on canned foods and pre-packaged foods.

So.. With that said..

Question 1: Would you agree with the above statement, that your diets haven't changed that much.

Question 2: With the dietary requirements of sailing (probably) being more than life on land, does it really matter?

Question 3: Any canned, prepared foods that you would recommend (as containing few chemicals etc), any you would stay away from?

Many thanks,

--Dave
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Old 20-02-2006, 22:04   #2
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Don't be lead astray. You can buy many foods in bulk and store them for months at a time. In fact, not counting fresh vegetables, you can have all the healthy foods you would ever have at home. For fresh vegetables, you will need to stock up every 2 weeks.

You can also can all of your own vegetables. Just think low-tech, and make things from sratch. Also realize you can get powdered egg whites and milk.

There are plenty of sailors out there who eat right. We are some of them. We make *everything* from scratch. Even things most people would buy. Because we make everything from scratch, we are able to go very long times without provisioning (except fresh vegetables). Take bread for instance. How often do you plan to buy a $5 loaf? Once a week? Once every 2 weeks (it'll go moldy or hard in the fridge).

FORGET THAT! Make your bread when you need it. It is made from ingredients that will keep for several months. It'll be fresh all the time, and will save you big $$.

You just need to be creative and dedicate more of your time/life to eating right in order to eat right afloat or at home.
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Old 21-02-2006, 07:09   #3
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Thanks for your insite.

I agree with you, the first step is to make most of your own foods.

I already do plenty of "home-made" cooking at home, including bread (but I think I'll miss my bread machine! )

I think Im more concerned about the long-term storage items such as canned-fruits/vegetables, prepackaged foods (like lipton noodles n sauce etc)

I dunno.. Maybe it's just as simple as cutting those things out of my diet. Think Im just trying to find healthier alternatives that keep as well.

Am I making a mountain out of a mole-hill (it wouldn't be the first time) Does canned fruits/vegs have alot of processed chemicals etc?

Thanks again for your insight,

--Dave
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Old 21-02-2006, 11:32   #4
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$5.00 for a laof of Bread ouch. We would pay $1.00 for a cheapy here and $3.50 for the real expensive stuff. Most good healthy bread is about $2.20'ish
Dave, I think just because something is caned, doesn't always mean it is bad. You can get fruit and meat with no additives in cans. You just need to read the labels as to what is put in. But then, we have info on lables here in NZ required by law, so people can make those kind of decisions.
Hey Sean, how did the Venison thing work out??
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Old 21-02-2006, 14:38   #5
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Dave
I suppose we all have a different idea on what healthy food & living is, I beleave
Its a littler harder to eat healthy onboard if your moving around alot, but it can be done. Something we have done is buy seeds & grains and sprout them, its very easy -cheap-to do & it tastes great, not to mention the health benifits. We sprout all kinds of beans, lentals, adzuki,peas and much more. We also grow wheat grass & juice that, it gives us all the greens we need. Canned foods have lost most if not all of its life force and many of the nutrinets, so wile we have some onboard , its only for the ditch bag.

Wheatgrass is a blood purifier, cleanser, and detoxifier. It contains chlorophyll which helps carry oxygen to every cell in your body. Oxygen in the body's cells helps fight off disease, harmful bacteria, and cancer. Wheatgrass must be "squeezed" or juiced in order for the body to assimilate the nutrients. A person cannot just put some wheatgrass in a salad since the grass nutrients cannot be extracted from the fibers.http://www.hippocratesinst.org/index.htm

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Old 21-02-2006, 17:37   #6
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But then, we have info on lables here in NZ required by law, so people can make those kind of decisions.
Hey Alan.

It's the same here in the US. All vitiamins and nutrients & proteins. Are listed on the label on the cans. Even packaged goods, have this listed on them!!
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Old 21-02-2006, 17:56   #7
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I am of the opinion that spending long periods of time on board should not have a significant impact on your diet. Obviously, if you are spending long periods "off shore", you have to compromise and your diet will have more packaged, processed and canned foods...but really, I doubt that many of us spend very much of our sailing time off shore...and that the majority of our time is spent island hopping or coastal crusing or even marina hopping. Assuming this to be the case, I cant see why one cannot have access to standard shopping facilites at least once a week, or perhaps even more regularly - and many people get by with shopping once a week.

Perhaps I am particularly lucky, but my cruising playground is still somewhere where one can drop a line and, most occasions, still catch a feed of fish. I can also put on my snorkel and get some abalone, drop a pot for lobster, or just comb the shoreline for fresh oysters or mussels. Seafood cooked within minutes of harvesting is as good as it gets IMO...healthy too!
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Old 21-02-2006, 18:16   #8
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I can also put on my snorkel and get some abalone, drop a pot for lobster, or just comb the shoreline for fresh oysters or mussels. Seafood cooked within minutes of harvesting is as good as it gets IMO...healthy too!
Man I agree with you on that one!!
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Old 21-02-2006, 18:53   #9
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Case in point: a few weekends back, two friends and I were on board for an overnight cruise. We dined on
Fresh mussels steamed in a white wine broth
Fresh squid, pan fried with fresh herbs, lemon and pepper
Fresh flathead fillets with garlic
Fresh whole austrailian salmon, oven baked with balsamic vinegar and basil.

All caught that afternoon. Its a tough life, but we struggle on manfully!

Edited to add: The first 2 courses were washed down with the remainder of the bottle of South Australian sauvignon blanc that was used in poaching the mussels, while the latter 2 were accompanied by a nice local pinot noir...
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Old 21-02-2006, 19:21   #10
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Thanks for your insite.

I agree with you, the first step is to make most of your own foods.

I already do plenty of "home-made" cooking at home, including bread (but I think I'll miss my bread machine! )

I think Im more concerned about the long-term storage items such as canned-fruits/vegetables, prepackaged foods (like lipton noodles n sauce etc)

I dunno.. Maybe it's just as simple as cutting those things out of my diet. Think Im just trying to find healthier alternatives that keep as well.

Am I making a mountain out of a mole-hill (it wouldn't be the first time) Does canned fruits/vegs have alot of processed chemicals etc?

Thanks again for your insight,

--Dave
Hey Dave. Don't worry about it. You're definitely not making a mountain out of a mole hill. The wife and I take food extremely seriously, so I'm sure you're not as bad as we are! ha ha ha In that light, read on.

Call me a Galley Bully, but to eat better, try this stuff:

*Ditch the bread machine (doesn't do anything you can't do in half an hour's time)
*Look into canning your own vegetables (Google a little bit about home canning - it's not very hard)
*Definitely ditch anything with the word "Lipton" on it. Make soups yourself. Espeically if you have high blood pressure or it runs in the family.
*Make noodles yourself. Pasta is only eggs and flour. That's it. With powdered egg whites, you can make fresh pasta for a year without re-provisioning.
*Buy flour in hermetically sealed drums. They will last over a year.

But alas... there are a few things you will have some trouble keeping: Meats, some cheeses. If you opt for a boat with an ample freezer (that's a whole different thread), you can freeze meats and cheeses for a few months.

As was said before, canned meats are good too, just look online to find some that are canned up versions of good meat. There should be little or no salt added, and absolutely no chemicals.

Store bought canned vegetables are fine, if you want to really be away from civilization for a while. Just read labels to be sure you aren't getting any of the chemicals or especially a lot of salt. Better yet... can your own. It just takes a pressure cooker/canner, some of those old-fashioned looking ball jars (get the ones with the metal rings, not the antiques) and a stove. It's not very hard at all.

Bottom line is, it's no different than living on land. You can choose to be near a grocery store, or plan ahead a little bit and get what you need to go a couple months without shopping.

Wheels: The venison has been fantastic! We have put it into heavy rotation. I don't want to scare off any potential charter clients here, but we have been using it in place of beef. Since there is no fat, lots of iron, and tons of protein, it's been extremely healthy. Because it's not always in stock at our local Whole Foods Market, we are looking at ordering it in bulk online right now. We don't eat much beef at all anymore. The meat is much too inferior as compared to some of the other animals, since more care is taken in the raising and culling of these other animals (venison, buffalo, etc...) We do, however, have no problem cooking steaks and the like for our charter clients.

And... don't get me started about $5 loaves of bread. That's not even the most expensive. I see them for $6 and $7 for the good stuff. I don't even want to launch into my tirade about how the wages in the US don't keep up with prices and force people to over-work for nothing. I'll spare ya.

So Dave... how's Portland?? We are scheduled to do a 2 week charter up your way this summer. Sure miss the area. It will be GREAT to be back up there. I had a couple good stays at Peak's Island.
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Old 21-02-2006, 20:18   #11
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So Dave... how's Portland?? We are scheduled to do a 2 week charter up your way this summer. Sure miss the area. It will be GREAT to be back up there. I had a couple good stays at Peak's Island.
Portland has been great. Our winter, probably as your is, has been relatively mild.. Especially compared to the past few winters we've had.

I would love to pick your brain on the business side of your [ad]venture. I'll leave that for PM's.

Best,

--Dave
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Old 21-02-2006, 20:26   #12
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Go away Weyalan!!! Damn you're making me hungry.
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Old 21-02-2006, 20:33   #13
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Yeah Weyalan, that is just plain cruel
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Old 21-02-2006, 20:38   #14
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Haha. I am a cruel & unusual punisher, am I not?! Anyway, just in case you were under any illusions, here is a photograph of the abovementioned cruise, just heading into our evening anchorage / fishing spot (sorry if the picture is rather big)

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Old 22-02-2006, 07:46   #15
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Thanks...

All;

I really like some of these ideas.

I've done some researching concerning breads.. And soups.. no problem for me to make.. do it all the time already.

I really like the idea of sprouting seeds; a great source of nutrients. I guess I would be concerned with having to dump all the seeds overboard when I enter certain countries? Is there a way around this? (sealing bags etc?)

Thanks,

--Dave
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