I just watched the documentary “Game Changers”. It’s a documentary about the advantages of a plant-based diet. The target audience seemed to be geared towards men, which I thought was an interesting approach to the subject of plant-based eating. The film contains lots of doctors testing elite athletes in running, football and weightlifting. I have been vegetarian for over 20 years and I love a mostly plant based diet, but I don’t advocate or give advice on what to eat. However, I seriously encourage my private yoga clients to examine what they are eating. If you have a plant-based diet, but everything you are eating is coming out of package, is that so much better?
I know I have shared this in the past, but do you read the labels/ingredients of what you are eating? Do you know what’s in your food? I have food allergies as does my daughter and so I need to read everything I bring into the house. I am hyper aware of the food I am buying. There was also a time in my life that I wasn’t aware. I just ate mindlessly. In my 20’s when I developed allergies I was shocked to discover so many things I couldn’t pronounce in my packaged foods. Preservatives, coloring, additives, fortifications, and more.
In yoga food is life. It is sacred. It nourishes us. It heals us. It gives us being. When you look at your food intake, does it nourish you? Is it full of the essence of life?
I had a teacher in my yoga training who would say over and over again “Simple. Simple. Not so simple.” she was from Brazil and her accent gave it such a beautiful sound. The idea being that we want to make a yoga pose complicated and in reality, when you break it down it is very simple, but the things that are simple and straight forward are often the most difficult. We want to complicate food and the food companies know that and make billions each year on every new fad and craze. For this reason, I love Michael Pollen’s book “In Defense of Food” (if you haven’t read it, I highly recommend it). He says, “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” When he says, “Eat food”, he is talking about whole foods, not processed or packaged food. Bananas. Sweet potatoes. Broccoli.
From a yogic perspective, the closer you are to the source the more life in your food or the more prana in your food.
Am I as guilty as anyone of grabbing those vegan chickpea snacks at Starbucks? Heck yeah. Am I aware this isn’t the best option for me? Yes. Sometimes this is done out of necessity, sometimes laziness and sometimes exhaustion. This is about progress not perfection.
Can you do a food log for a week and just examine what you are eating where and when? Do you see patterns in why you are making your choices? Do you see food choices you didn’t realize you were making? Are you eating because you are feeling a certain way? What kinds of foods are you eating? Do you eat out most the time? Do you cook at home most the time? Do you eat packaged food most the time? What kind of changes do you want to make? Can you write them down?
Take action on your food list… bold action is the key to change and if you are trying to change your diet to bring more prana to your life to your list you came up with above and take the first step or the journey.
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