During a particularly difficult time in my life, a friend told me that if I really wanted to feel vibrant and grounded, then I should follow a raw food diet. Sounded good to me: Eating non-cooked food preserves the enzymes, proteins that catalyze (increase the rates of) chemical reactions.
I was raw for one year and I never felt worse. My children thought I was pregnant because the food wasn’t metabolizing properly, which caused my stomach to bloat. I felt an elevated level of spaciness. The kicker was when someone in the raw food world recommended that I take digestive enzymes. Huh? Wasn’t improving my digestion a benefit of eating raw?
Then I went to a resort where I dedicated myself to an intensive week long raw juice cleanse. I learned three important lessons:
1. “One man’s food is another man’s poison.” We were encouraged to eat a small amount of grain each day. As soon as I consumed it, I immediately felt more grounded.
2. I was using food as a crutch for relief of the painful situation I was encountering in my life at the time.The leader of the raw juice cleanse group asked me if I had heard of orthorexia, a term coined by Dr. Steve Bratman, MD, author of Health Food Junkies, which is essentially a psychological obsession with eating pure food. Hard as it is to admit this, I may have had it.
3. Each body composition requires different types of foods to put them in balance. During that week, I met my first Ayurvedic practitioner, who inspired me to embark on my studies of Ayurvedic medicine. Through Ayurveda, I learned that while a raw food diet is great for some body types, it is detrimental to others, like mine.
My body type actually needs cooked foods with fats and oils to help me keep grounded and focused. After adding these back into my diet and loosening up a bit with what I eat, I never felt more vibrant, in control and balanced.
My biggest lesson from this experience: Be true to myself, but that requires mindfulness; that is,
- Slowing down and being present in the moment – having faith that right at
this moment, everything is OK.
- Not getting caught up in the latest trends
- Surrounding myself with positive, non-controlling people who are genuinely
- Digging down deep and really knowing what my true strengths and weaknesses are.
- Letting go and having faith that when I fall, I will land on my feet.
- It means, more than anything, acting nobel.
May 2012 bring you grounding, peace and love!