We want nothing more than to love and connect on this great big beautiful planet Earth of ours. When we invite daily meditation/prayer and/or yoga practice into our life, we begin to take an inventory of our life of all the things that are toxic to our healthy mind-body connection – relationships, jobs, careers, hobbies, environments, etc. However, there seems to be this attachment to our food and drink that we just can’t give up, even when it’s toxic. The same way we have a primal need to love and connect to other human beings is the same way we begin to long for and foster ways to create love and connection with our higher Self, our environment, other species, and ultimately the nourishment we put into our bodies as we breathe ourselves to a plane of higher consciousness.
So what do we eat anyway? The choices are limitless it seems – paleo, neopaleo, vegan, vegetarian, frutarian, meat-of-plenty, primal, gluten-free, and on and on. For good reason either allergies or some other health concern like celiac disease, people eat special diets and need to stick with those that manage and uplift their specific health issues. When I am asked what I eat, my response is always this – “whatever my body tells me it needs.”
What the heck does that mean? Well, sometimes my body needs more dark greens and I go through 2 packages of raw spinach a week, or I need more beta carotene and I eat raw carrots with almost every meal, or I am getting ready for a race and I pack up on complete proteins of brown rice and black beans, or my immune system may be telling me to pack up on some Vitamin C so I eat oranges, drink tons of OJ and put raw tomatoes on almost everything. To get to this place where I can truly listen to my body and know exactly what it needs to nourish, heal, and thrive, I had to detox first. I had to detox the toxic waste that gets embedded in my neural network system, in my muscle tissue, and in my heart. I had to meditate/pray and practice yoga daily, as part of my routine to keep pushing the toxic junk out so I could make space to connect to my higher Self and create the balanced environment where I could then listen to what my body needed to nourish itself, and when I nourished it with eco-veggie diet food this amazing thing happened called metamorphosis. I began to thrive and live in complete joy. And, I practice that every single moment of my life because I love to thrive and I love to live in complete joy, with all the mess-ups, slip-ups, and bruises in-between.
To detox the toxic food and drink we put into our bodies, I always tell my students, friends, and family to start with taking out processed foods from their diets. We can eat minimally and it still tastes good. Here’s a grocery shopping tip – stay away (for the most part) from the center isles and shop on the perimeter. Once you eliminate processed foods from your diet, stock up on whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts/seeds, legumes, nut butters and raw honey/maple syrup, and then eat them. This is not a complete list. I am working on a complete list on in my other post called “Eco-Veggie” diet. Check it out when you get a chance.
What is an “Eco-Veggie” diet? There’s something called the Ecological Footprint and what that means is this – it’s the measure of human demand on the Earth’s ecosystems. We are putting too much demand on the Earth’s ecosystems. Period. We want to transition from putting too much demand on our ecosystem to leaving a lighter ecological footprint, because we can, it’s possible and the Earth is telling us so, if we slow down and listen. It’s called love and connection in balance. Let’s talk briefly about energy conservation, and not just turning the lights off and using bikes more instead of cars. We need those types of energy conservation, but we also need to apply that same mind set when we approach our food in how we grow it, process it, sell it, and eat it. We don’t need 40 ingredients in a box of toxic waste you name it quick hunger fix junk and drink. Wow, it just took me a lot of energy to spit that out, but think about how much energy is used to create that toxic box of junk. We need scientists to spend their energy on making up new colors to put into our food and drink instead of finding ways to make energy conservation more efficient and approachable and affordable to everyone. Then we need more man-made chemicals to throw in because maybe making things from a petri dish are more exciting than using things from nature in a petri dish. I think you get the idea here. You can probably feel the disconnection from that short description. The colloquialism is true – less is more. Fresh greens, with fresh tomatoes, fresh ground pepper, with a tad of olive oil and squeeze of lemon is all in the “less is more” concept – mind, body, environment, and connection (think energy conservation here).
And why veggie? We are evolving towards a plant based diet. Brace yourself my meat eater friends. I am not saying here that you have to fully give up meat, at least right now or probably in this life time. That’s another blog post we can get into on the ethical and spiritual reasons why we should detach ourselves from meat consumption. We have evolved in agriculture techniques that make plant based eating easy, accessible, efficient, and balanced.
And don’t forget that we can find so much nourishment here locally on a hike through the woods. Go check out the abundance of beauty and natural nourishment through Spring Creek Greenway – http://www.springcreekgreenway.org/. Check out my friend’s foraging news on Facebook by searching “Merriwether Wild Edibles”. Merriwether can tell you all about the good stuff in the woods that you can eat. Stayed wired in on his news feeds by “liking” his page. Now that’s some real food connection.
We want to slowly disconnect from the toxic food engine and start connecting to eating more whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. Go easy on yourself, give yourself time, but stay committed. When you start detoxing the toxic food out of your system, you will start finding that you will listen and tune into what your body really needs to nourish, heal, and thrive.
So what do we drink? Well, you know the obvious is water, but we are humans we love variety and adventure in everything we do. The options are plenty – herbal teas, green, black, white teas, put cucumber, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, lemons or limes in your water. Make your own juice with a juicer or blend some veggies and fruits up in a blender for a smoothie treat. Enjoy your spirits, wine or beer of choice in moderation and moderation isn’t every day or even a few times a week.
And, know this – indulge in moderation, it’s totally ok. My indulgence is dark chocolate. And, it’s ok to mess up, it’s ok to break the rules occasionally because we are human. That’s how we learn, how we grow, and how we find our ultimate connection. The Divine will guide us back to the Right Way every time.
When we come to the mediation/prayer mat or yoga mat, we must be finely tuned to connect to our higher Self and the Divine (through breath and body movement that heals psychical pain/stiffness aka yoga :)), and without fostering the diet connection in our life, we will still have unnecessary static in our practice and in our life. When we listen to what to feed our bodies we nourish, heal, and thrive.
Om Shanti Om ~ Athea