I sat quietly, listening to Danielle LaPorte’s words in the early morning as the sun began to grace my window. I’ve followed her for years. I love her wisdom.
I’ve been contemplating a lot these days. Food. Nourishment. Quietness. Contentment. What it all means in the grand scheme of things. Questions like:
What makes a nourishing life?
How did I get where I am today?
Is it the right place to be?
Why have we made our current food supply what it is?
Is it worth trying to change it?
Maybe that’s why Danielle is back in my life, why I chose her class to guide me for the week.
“Show me how to love myself truly and entirely. Show me how to eat, sleep, and move my body for nourishment, restoration, restoration. Show me how to embody everything that is my joy.” ~Danielle LaPorte
Nourishing is all about sustenance. To nourish your body means to provide it with the food necessary for life, growth, and good health.
A nourishing life is about making the right choices to sustain that good health. For vitality. For life.
But when did we start taking that for granted?
Food, the ultimate purpose
What is food? Wikipedia defines it as any substance consumed by an organism for nutritional support. It can be raw, processed, or formulated and is consumed orally by animals for growth, health, or pleasure.
Maybe that’s where confusion sets in. We assume if something says it’s food, it is.
Not true. In fact, one of my favorite food writers and authors, Mark Bittman, says it well in his series of articles and books.
“40 to 80 percent of products in the supermarket should be classified as poison with no nutritional value and are actually harmful to your health.”
That comes as a surprise to some people. They assume if it’s on the shelves, it must be food.
Confusion continues when Big Corps use misleading words on processed foods:
- Natural flavoring
- Made with whole grains
- Made with real fruit
- And more … A LOT more
These words are about marketing. They’re trigger words used to attract and increase the odds you’ll purchase the product.
Plant-based doesn’t make it any less confusing. In fact, I think, in many cases, it increases.
In my post When Plant-Based Isn’t Healthy, I listed the ingredients of a Beyond Meat Burger. It includes: water, pea protein, expeller-pressed canola oil, refined coconut oil, rice protein, natural flavors, dried yeast, cocoa butter, methylcellulose, and less than 1% of potato starch, salt, potassium chloride, beet juice color, apple extract, pomegranate concentrate, sunflower lecithin, vinegar, lemon juice concentrate, vitamins and minerals (zinc sulfate, niacinamide [vitamin B3], pyridoxine hydrochloride [vitamin B6], cyanocobalamin [vitamin B12], calcium pantothenate).
Beyond Burger may be plant-based, but it’s questionable how good it is for you.
Mindset, to nourish your soul, to guide you into better choices
Speed is a killer.
The faster we go, the more mistakes we make, the more trouble we get into.
I was a high-achieving, very busy mom back when my daughter was young. I worked, ran a business, kept up with the demands of a house, volunteered at my daughter’s school, played sometimes-caregiver to a mom who needed help … you get it. 😉
I remember when I was just starting to put the pieces together of what it meant to eat healthily. My daughter declared herself vegetarian at three, so I attempted to balance her needs with my husband and my tastes. Dinner usually ended up being chicken breast for us, plant-based protein for my daughter, a veggie or a salad, and a box of rice or potatoes. I could get dinner on the table in under thirty minutes.
Meals were always fast. Cereal for breakfast. Takeout or leftovers for lunch. Chicken for dinner. Little variance. Always meant to fill me up and take away that hangry feeling. Never about what nourished me to create gorgeous energy.
I didn’t know what I didn’t know. That took time.
Change comes from slowing down and paying attention.
Change comes from realizing the error in your ways.
Little things started chipping away.
- When a nutritionist spoke at a networking event I was at, and used a ten-year-old McDonald’s hamburger and french fries as a model. They looked the same as if she’d just picked them up at the drive-thru.
- I learned just how bad factory farming really is. Yes, it’s bad for the animals. If there is that much wrong with production, how could I ever expect to gain maximum nutrition from one of the by-products?
- I discovered WHO and FDA list meat as carcinogenic. If top organizations know meat is bad, why are we still eating it? (I know how Teflon and smoking followed the same path, so it doesn’t surprise me.)
The more I learned, the more I could no longer ignore. Small changes, it’s all about small changes.
One percent growth every single day adds up over time. I learned that from a mentor decades ago, and it always stays top of mind.
Nourishment starts from awareness
I carefully pluck the tomato from the vine. I take my trusty clippers and pull the squash from its nest deep inside the plant. I place it in my basket and carry it home.
If you want to feel different, you have to change your actions. Growing your own food does all that and more.
Food nourishes our body. But it has to be good food.
Food made from chemicals we were never designed to eat can’t do that.
Food processed beyond what food should go through isn’t nutritious.
That McDonald’s hamburger and fries stay top-of-mind.
When we eat better, we have more energy.
When we have more energy, we feel better.
When we feel better, we have more desire.
When we have more desire, we get more done.
When we get more done, we build better lives.
When we build better lives, we understand the purpose of eating better.
Life is energy.
It’s the start of everything.
It’s how you build a nourishing life.