Ready for a challenge on healthy eating?

<i>This post has been updated, as indicated below.</i>

Each October, Santa Monica food blogger Andrew Wilder throws down a friendly challenge to readers of his Eating Rules food blog. He challenges them to spend the month of October shunning processed foods in favor of more wholesome fare.

Last year, more than 3,000 readers signed Wilder’s online pledge to do just that.

Wilder’s challenge was the subject of a story in Saturday’s Los Angeles Times Health section. Now, we’re catching up with Wilder this afternoon during a Google + Hangout to go more in-depth about the challenge. (OK, we admit it. Some of us have trouble telling a processed food from an unprocessed food. So we want Wilder to break it down for us.)


You can join in the discussion by lobbing some questions at Wilder via Twitter, using #AskLATimes.

[Updated, 12:37 p.m. Sept. 24: The Google + Hangout will begin at 1 p.m. And you can watch it right here, or on the homepage or at]

Why October? Wilder told us he chose October for his annual challenge because it’s the unofficial start of a holiday eating season, one that many of us regret come Jan. 1, the day when Americans typically take stock of their waistlines:

“It’s really an awareness exercise,” Wilder said. “It’s a chance to reset before the holiday chaos. You are about to enter this gantlet where you are going to get pummeled with foods left and right. This is actually a great time to make a resolution. Do I want to start Jan. 1 feeling 10 pounds heavier or 5 pounds lighter?”

Are you planning on taking the challenge?

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