What kind of body vehicle are you cruising with? No matter what conditions may burden and afflict our bodies, we can set intentions to care for and nourish whatever temple that we are in. We create this connection by bringing a deep awareness to our state of physical existence. When I did this many years ago, I realized that my body was a representation of a Southern style all-you-can-eat buffet, with an extensive dessert bar! I have always loved food and being raised in Alabama, eating was the most favorite past-time. I never thought that I would turn away from enjoying a multitude of fried foods, ham hocks, buttery cheese grits, and mounds of sugary snacks. It would be a travesty for a Black woman from the South to not eat fried chicken! Oh my….
However, when I began to deeply explore the feelings and sensations in my body, I found that many of these foods were not serving my body in a way that gave ease of digestion and increased vital energy. This attention and mindfulness began to transform the way that I saw food. I increasingly became able to identify if I was actually “starving” as opposed to when I was eating as a reaction to an emotional or mental charge or to fill a void in my soul. Through having a loving partnership with my body and learning to listen intently to its needs, I slowly moved into a vegetarian lifestyle with a healthy balance of proteins, carbohydrates and fats. I do not claim that vegetarianism is for everybody, but I do teach that deep listening is for all of us. Our bodies are mostly the same, though entirely unique at the same time. What works for us individually can be determined by the knowledge from research that we have on physical health in conjunction with the knowledge provided by our own inner wisdom.
We will discover that the body craves to be treated right according to the needs that will give it the most effective functioning and balance. We will also understand that just as a computer sometimes requires a re-boot, our bodies may perform better with intermittent re-boots in the form of cleansing and detoxing. Eating in this manner along with workable exercise plans and activities, we realize a body that is vital, thriving, and flourishing. Now, at the age of 39, I am styling in a body that is exponentially more fit than it was in my 20’s. See for yourself how minding your body can enrich you with a temple to be proud of!
Other reasons to eat mindfully – check out this article from the November 2011 issue of Scientific American Magazine. Food We Eat Might Control Our Genes
Scientific American Magazine, November 2011
By Anne-Marie C. Hodge Scientists find rice microRNA inside human cells
“You are what you eat.” The old adage has for decades weighed on the minds of consumers who fret over responsible food choices. Yet what if it was literally true? What if material from our food actually made its way into the innermost control centers of our cells, taking charge of fundamental gene expression?
That is in fact what happens, according to a recent study of plant-animal microRNA transfer led by Chen-Yu Zhang of Nanjing University in China. MicroRNAs are short sequences of nucleotides—the building blocks of genetic material. Although microRNAs do not code for proteins, they prevent specific genes from giving rise to the proteins they encode. Blood samples from 21 volunteers were tested for the presence of microRNAs from crop plants, such as rice, wheat, potatoes and cabbage.
The results, published in the journal Cell Research
, showed that the subjects’ bloodstream contained approximately 30 different microRNAs from commonly eaten plants. It appears that they can also alter cell function: a specific rice microRNA was shown to bind to and inhibit the activity of receptors controlling the removal of LDL—“bad” cholesterol—from the bloodstream. Like vitamins and minerals, microRNA may represent a previously unrecognized type of functional molecule obtained from food.
The revelation that plant microRNAs play a role in controlling human physiology highlights the fact that our bodies are highly integrated ecosystems. Zhang says the findings may also illuminate our understanding of co-evolution, a process in which genetic changes in one species trigger changes in another. For example, our ability to digest the lactose in milk after infancy arose after we domesticated cattle. Could the plants we cultivated have altered us as well? Zhang’s study is another reminder that nothing in nature exists in isolation.
“Melissa's ability to connect with me as an individual made me feel safe and comfortable. Her calm and soothing voice during the guided meditations really helped me to tap into a state of mindfulness. The mindful eating exercise that Melissa led was very eye-opening and made me evaluate what it is that I am putting into my body. The hike and meditation we went on was very powerful, as Melissa pointed out setting our intentions. Her ability to connect with the mind, body and spirit in Mother Nature was a very grounding experience.”
M.Y., Business Accountant in San Francisco
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