Posts tagged with health:
“To keep the body in good health is a duty… otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.” - Buddha
A lot of people ask me how I started eating a high-raw, plant-based diet and the truth is - I am not an over-night convert. I took the very slow and very unsteady approach. I didn’t make any drastic changes because my health was never that drastically poor. I think a lot of people are on the same page when it comes to to their health and fitness; it’s difficult to become fully inspired and self-motivated to make the changes to your diet and lifestyle when you can’t really recognize that anything’s wrong.
The one thing that I began to do that really changed my attitude towards food and health was keeping note of the various physical and emotional connections I was experiencing when I ate poorly - junk food, animal products, heavy fats etc… The phrase, “when you eat shit, you feel like shit” rings astoundingly true.The simple act observing my own behavior caused me to become aware of my ability to control my mood and clarity of thought, peace of mind, physical strength and appearance. It was that sort of freedom that then inspired me to make more positive food and fitness choices, not because I was forcing or guilting myself to do them, but because I knew they caused me to feel good, to feel happiness - and every person wants to be happy, it’s natural - I just needed to re-learn what foods make me feel truly blissed out!
Begin to notice how your food choices affect:
- The quality of your sleep - Note times awakened depth of sleep, dreams, thoughts and ease of falling to sleep.
- How you feel when you wake up - Note how rested you feel, your bodys aches or stiff joints, stuffed or runny nose, energy level, emotions, attitude, how your face looks (puffy, eyes, skin clarity etc.)
- How you feel the rest of the day - Physically: energy levels, areas of discomfort, cold hands/feet, allergies, etc. Mentally: alertness, clairty of thought, etc. Emotionally: out of control feelings, connection to others, self-views etc.
- Bowel Movements - Let’s be honest, your shit is important and directly related to your health. If your having painful or lengthy BMs, then your diet is probably in need of a tune up. Note the time, frequency, quality and ease of elimination.
- How you feel relative to each meal - Note your level of hunger, enjoyment of the meal, any emotions before, during or after, energy level before and after (it shouldn’t drop), satisfaction, fatigue etc.
For me, it was (and still is) a slow, day by day journey. In my experience, awareness is something you grow and nurture. It started with me eating more fruits and veggies, and less cheese and oil and now I’ve lost 45 lbs, rid myself of asthma, gained confidence, clarity and peace of mind with a cruelty-free diet and I’m loving where I’m at.
I recommend keeping a log like the one above, or even just mental notes throughout the day and I promise you’ll start seeing connections and feeling the urge to make better choices. I really believe that every meal is an opportunity for change! :)
Well here I am at day four of my juice fast! I’m feeling good, besides being a bit tired, but that’s just because I didn’t get enough sleep. My boyfriend is done his juice fast, but I can’t decide if I want to continue on for another day or two… If so, I’m definitely going to need to get more greens & oranges! hehe. :)
I first heard about Maca powder a few months ago from my friend Paige who tweeted about adding it to her fruit smoothies for an added energy boost before a workout. I was curious; for one thing I’m a smoothie lover and I’m always interested in trying out new additions to my morning meal & for another, if Paige was using it, it was probably worth a shot at the very least - the woman radiates positive energy (go check her out)! :)
So, a few days later I thought, “what the hell?” and ordered a box of Maca from Jason & Pia of welovesuperfoods.com and once it arrived I started adding it to my morning smoothies. There was no detectable taste to speak of; the fruits in my smoothies covered up any hint of powder. It was a soft brown dust, smelling lightly like potato and cinnamon; very easy to add to just about anything with liquid: soups, smoothies, juices, daterade, dressings, sauces, spreads, dips etc.
So, what is Maca powder exactly?
Known as the superfood of the Andes, it’s a root vegetable native to Peru that is grown at 14,000 feet and often used for its medicinal properties. The Maca root was prized throughout the Incan empire for its adaptogenic-like qualities that enable it to nourish and balance the body’s endocrine system, and to help cope with stress. It also energizes naturally, without the jitters and crashes of caffeine, and it can aid in reproductive function, helping to balance hormones and increase fertility.
Mighty Maca Recipes:
Here’s a few luscious recipes I came across on Pinterest when I wasn’t really sure how versatile this new superfood would be. Some of these recipes are a little more involved than others, but all are A+ grade eye-candy! :)
Since adding maca to my routine, I’ve definitely noticed an increase in my energy levels, I’ve been using it fairly consistently (2-3 times a week) for a couple months now and I’ve been more motivated to workout, finding it easier to cope with mood swings and felt a bit of a kick to my libido too! Haha! ;) I’m going to continue to use it here and there because I consider it a healthy, raw alternative to other stimulants like caffeine-powered sugar-drinks and I don’t want to add any processed soy/whey-based protein powders to my smoothies either. I like to keep it clean & natural as much as possible; so I think raw, organic Maca powder is a great addition to my routine. :)
Have you ever tried or thought about trying Maca before? What are your thoughts on ‘superfoods’?