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Weston A. Price Foundation Conference Speaker Anne Sergeant: Nourishing Meals and the 3-legged stool of Good Nutrition

Anne S

Today I’m giving you a sneak peak at my friend, Anne Sergeant’s, talk for the upcoming Weston A. Price / Wise Traditions Conference in November. She’ll be speaking about budgeting for nutrient-dense meals, and today specifically you’ll learn about what she calls the “3 legged stoolof good nutrition.

You may remember Anne’s popular article in the Weston A. Price Foundation’s quarterly journal, Wise Traditions, on how to feed your family nourishing foods on a budget, which I posted here not long ago: “Eating Healthy Shouldn’t Cost an Arm & a Leg”.

The 3-legged stool of Good Nutrition

When Anne and I spoke recently, she shared her concern that many in the Nourishing Traditions/Real Food movement seem to be focused on organic foods and getting the junk out of the meals we feed our families, but they may be missing other important parts of what she calls, the “3-legged stool” of good nutrition:

  1. Keeping the bad stuff out of our diets. (Eating more organics to avoid things like HFCS, trans fats, MSG, GMOs, additives and preservatives, avoiding grocery store meats or reduced fat foods, etc. – but “organic” doesn’t mean you’re providing necessary nutrients…)
  2. Putting the good stuff into our diets. (Healthy fats full of fat soluble vitamins, raw milk, cod liver oil, bone broths full of minerals, coconut oil, grass-fed meats/organ meats, pastured eggs and poultry, etc. – all of these are very nutrient-dense.)
  3. Properly preparing our meals to get the most nutrients from our foods as possible. (Properly preparing grains, cultured/fermented foods, crispy nuts, condiments, etc. – some foods need their nutrients unlocked before our bodies can use them correctly.)

Just like a stool with one (or two) bad legs cannot support us, a diet weak in one of these elements cannot provide good overall nutrition.

Let us know what you think!

Have you been “guilty”, like I have at times, of focusing more on #1 than on #2 or #3?


  1. I’ve been pretty focused on putting in and hoping that would push a lot of the bad stuff out. It’s been easy for the most part to do it that way. I had some resistance from my teen at first because he didn’t want his bad stuff replaced. But it’s becoming easier for us because we are seeing such drastic improvements in our health.

    It has also been pretty easy for me to concentrate on cooking methods since I never really learned how to cook. If I have a recipe for something, I can pretty much figure it out. But being so reliant on recipes I’m not able to take as great advantage of the inexpensive, in-season foods as I’d like. But I’m learning!

    I do feel very, very strongly about avoiding GMOs, and unfortunately, organic is the only way to avoid those right now.

  2. I’m very focused on 1 and 2 right now and not so much on 3. It’s one of those things I’ve had to let go of early in my pregnancy when food and cooking repulsed me, and for lack of time when all I want to do is sleep :) I had not been into soaking our grains for long before getting pregnant, and I know my body could especially use the extra nutrients now, but I have to be okay with doing what I can do and knowing my limits. There’s always next year right? :)

  3. I actually do pretty well with all of these. I lack the most in cultured/fermented foods. However, I’m brewing kombucha for the first time right now, and made milk kefir as well. I’d like to do more with veggies though.

  4. We do all three but that does not mean that the kids and hubby will eat all three. But it has been a long journey and I have been cooking traditional and foods for almost six years. I started out soaking grains, then cooking organ meats, making stock came next, then lastly home made ferments. Right now I am mastering sourdough bread making.

    It takes time and experience in the kitchen and being comfortable eating your own concoctions!

    Hubby won’t eat MY ferments but he made his OWN kraut and said since he knew what went in it he will eat it. It is still fermenting and bubbling and will be another couple weeks till it is ready. I can’t wait to taste it.

    Getting the whole family in the kitchen and experimenting can be fun and a great learning experience.

  5. I must be doing something right when my 13 year old says, “What are we a health food store?” :o)
    Still working on #3. I think that will take me awhile to get under my belt, but I can tell you that I am more aware of what I need to do and what others (friends and family) should be doing.

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