Food is my last frontier. I’ve been a sugar addict all my life. I feel it’s a milder version of alcoholism. It takes over when I’m sad, depressed, angry, resentful or otherwise grumpy. When I changed my mind, energy and my outlook about food, I began to conquer the last frontier that stood in the way of my health and happiness.
Food is medicine. We have to treat it as such. The way we grow, buy, store, prepare and eat our food matters. Why? Because whole food, the stuff that grows, is energy, like us.
If you’ve been looking for an amazing book about the energy and soul of food, go pick up The Mystic Cookbook by Denise and Meadow Lynn. These amazing ladies teach us this: “Simply put, food is much more than, well, just food. It’s surprising, but it’s true; you really can eat your way to a deliciously enlightened life! When we think of a spiritual path, we often envision meditation, yoga, fasting, chanting, or prayer. We don’t usually consider our everyday meals as a potential gateway to mystical transformation. Yet the food you eat and your approach to it can be one of the most powerful pathways to spiritual renewal.”
I learned this first hand after attending a writing retreat in Montana, where all of our meals were prepared by someone who put this kind of love into them. Not only were the colors and flavors out of this world, the energy of the food was palpable. Every evening as we gathered for our dinner, we joined in a blessing that honored everything about the food we were about to eat from the people who grew it to the stores who sold it. I was so in love with this ritual that I brought it home to my otherwise grace-less dinner table and began to infuse my home with a new attitude.
Discovering the heart and soul of food takes a couple things. Slowing down is the first one. Unless we slow ourselves, our minds and our to do lists down and really reflect on our choices about the food we buy, prepare and eat, it will never feel good. It will feel rushed. A burden. Like something else we have to get done.
I realized that my awareness was what was changing everything for the better. Awareness was the key to feeling the energy associated with what I ate. When I really put my intention into this I know instantly if something is good or bad for me. And this focused awareness can be used for everything in life, not just food.
Without a mindful presence food becomes just another thing you must fit into your day to survive. With mindful presence food becomes a gift. Which would you rather have?
As soon as I realized that my awareness counted for food, just like it mattered when I was treating my clients or helping my kids with their homework, I knew that I had one of the answers to improving my health. I also had a tool to help my family improve theirs.
Here are 9 ways to slow down and make food a gift to your soul: