Most of our membership would agree that health is paramount. We breathe clean air and drink untreated, filtered water (via reverse osmosis, just like you would find in bottled water, but without the plastic bottle). Our land and labor provides us with fresh produce, dairy, and meat. The small size of our farm allows us to treat all of our animals with care and affection. Natural methods to manage our land and animals are used so that our food is healthy and nutritious. You can’t get more local food than the food you grow yourself.
Cheese (tens of varieties), yogurt, butter, cow’s milk, pork, beef, chicken, goat, deer, mushrooms, fresh greens and vegetables are available. Of course there is seasonal variation, but things like milk and dairy products are always available. Our milk is raw and unpasteurized. Pasteurization allows milk to store longer in a grocery store, but pasteurization kills both the good and bad bacteria in the milk. Our milk is refrigerated within an hour of being collected, and our milk is processed into cheese or drank within a couple days and so there is no need for pasteurization. Fresh foods are more nutrient dense and we think they are more tasty too!
What would you like for breakfast? Four different types of homegrown potatoes, three different types of kale? Fry them up in homegrown lard or coconut oil. Grab an organic pineapple from Hawaii or a local organic apple. Have a little homemade yogurt with homemade granola and a couple homegrown strawberries. The food variety and quality at East Wind is difficult to match.
Every evening a community dinner is set out in buffet style for everyone to enjoy. At East Wind we might be having American, Italian, Mexican, Indian, Korean, Japanese, or Mediterranean depending on the cooks for that night. Typically, each meal is served with a fresh picked salad. Creativity and new flavors are highly prized in the kitchen and visitors and members are encouraged to get involved, with help if needed, to bring new dishes or desserts to community meals. Of course, individuals are also free to craft their own meals.
At East Wind, there are tons of opportunities to work outside and get our bodies moving doing useful physical labor. Whether it is weeding a garden bed, herding goats for an afternoon, or digging post holes for a fence there is a wide range of easy to strenuous activities that members can plug into if they desire. We also have a more conventional exercise room with free weights, bars and benches, a punching bag, mats, and other exercise equipment. Yoga sessions, both informal and led, are common. Recreational walks on our many paths and hiking in the forest are also ways East Winders stay active on a daily basis.
Living in the city and working an inside job can make maintaining one’s health a more stressful task than it should be. Compounding this predicament is the fact that it is increasingly difficult to know what is in the food you are eating and how it was produced. Products on the shelf can be marketed in any number of ways, but unless you are willing to take the time and energy to really figure out where your food comes from, it is hard to be sure of anything you read. East Wind is not food self sufficient. We purchase staple grains, cooking oils, and other food to keep our kitchens well stocked and everyone happy. We are becoming more self reliant in terms of food each year and individual members who live here are able to maintain a diet where the vast majority of calories come from our own land.