Australian Functional Ingredients Pty Ltd

Wild Foods - my newest book is out!

Woo-whoo! My new book is out and available in our on-line store.

The sub-title to Wild FoodsLooking back 60,000 years for clues to our future survival tells you a little of the range of topics covered by my writings and that of contributors Ian Chivers and Izabela Konczak.

The overall theme is disruptive nutrition and we tackle the disease-care industry head-on. Wild foods can eliminate the need for most visits to your doctor and also replace a host of pharmaceuticals that they might prescribe, avoiding their unwanted side effects and cost.  The Australian Cancer Council highlights a healthy diet as a way to reduce the risk factors of contracting cancer (1 in 2 Australians will be diagnosed with cancer in their lives). Additionally, the statistics of people in the developed world who are over-weight or obese and will have diabetes or kidney disease or die of cardiovascular problems is mind-boggling.

Alternatively, you might be interested in peak performance, mental and physical.  Did you know that the right foods can help you get ‘in the zone’ where related ideas are more easily brought together, outlying concepts become easier to absorb and learning, creativity, decision-making and productivity are all enhanced. You might want to age slowly or even reverse some of the signs of time and if longevity is a long term aim, then quality of life must be too.

All of these situations require a healthy diet and Wild Foods gives us the clues as to what this needs to include and why. I also address why a so-called healthy diet is impossible with modern foods.

We also hope to disrupt the agricultural industry which includes the petrochemical industry’s contribution to farm production. Why do we tolerate the falling nutritional quality of our foods? There is a public outcry currently in play over a Victorian Municipal Council trying to close a cattle farmer’s enterprise because of land degradation, intensive farming drawbacks of smell and pollution and 20 other areas of complaint. Some people, even high profile celebrities are saying he has a right to keep running his cattle operation. No one has asked the question; “Why are we permitting the production of an unhealthy meat (marbled steak) that is cruel to the animals (cows eat grass, not grains), requires cropland for grain production, may incorporate GMO foods such as soy and corn and degrades the environment?” I’m with the Council on this one. Neil Perry and other chefs might like serving this because it’s hard to over-cook it and make it tough but what about some responsibility towards our nutrition? It really is not worth eating and is definitely not worth producing.

I hope to change opinions about the food we get to eat and where we are going with our health. The disease-care industry cures symptoms, not conditions. Our farmers grow stuff the supermarkets want to distribute and stock, not high quality food that we would want to consume if we knew the truth.

There are chapters on using wild foods as ingredients and how to integrate new flavours into your cooking. I could go on but you can find out more on this site. It is a work in progress and will continue to expand with information that supports each chapter in the book so subscribe if you go there and I’ll notify you with updates as they happen.

And if you wish, order your copy here.

I’ve been fortunate to have a copy of Vic Cherikoff’s latest book (Wild Foods). He is who I would call the father of bush food nutrition and this is great at that side of things. Its a great book especially as it doesn’t tread the well trodden but looks at what is there, what may be possible and more importantly why from a health perspective we should go there. It’s something of a reincarnation of where Vic’s bush food journey started.

Peter Abell (botanist, agronomist)

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Vic Cherikoff