People ask me on almost a daily basis if I am vegan, it started around the time I became a yoga teacher.
And while the food I eat is primarily vegan and vegetarian, I prefer to stay away from labels especially when it comes to my diet.
I feel like it puts me in a box of rules of what I can and cannot do, and to be honest, I have never been much for following rules.
I eat whole foods. Foods that come from our nature, mainly vegetables, fruits, grains, berries, mushrooms, etc. I almost never eat processed foods and prefer to make whatever I can from scratch as I want to stay away from additives, preservatives, fillers and unnecessary packaging and waste.
This is something I’ve been getting used to and has definitely been a slow progression, but because of this, I no longer crave processed sugars and meats the same way I did before and can almost exclusively eat a plant based diet. I do however, feel different cravings in my body during my moon cycle phase (flat out, period) and I honor that…
It’s called intuitive eating.
Listening to your body when it is craving certain foods as it might be telling you that you need more of a certain vitamin, mineral, protein etc. For example, during the moon phase I crave foods with more iron and magnesium.
Honoring when you are feeling hungry by eating something nourishing instead of letting yourself go hungry.
Recognizing when you are feeling full and wait until eating more, giving your body time to feel comfortably full instead of heavy full (hello, food babies).
Which goes hand in hand with…
Avoid eating too fast. Try to eat slower and more mindfully, appreciating the flavors and where your food came from.
No food shaming such as feeling “bad” for eating something you “shouldn’t have eaten”. It just leads to guilt feelings and stress, which triggers unhealthy eating habits and binge eating. It can even cause body shaming so give yourself a break and enjoy yourself.
I’ve also started to ask myself questions when it comes to my food choices; am I eating something because I am really hungry, or is it because I am feeling bored/stressed/upset?
We might have even picked up old habits from our childhood. For example, my parents would always guilt me to finish all my food (sorry mom and dad, calling you out) by talking about children who had no food to eat in other countries. So even now as an adult I find myself wanting to finish all the food as to not waste it. It always ends up makes me feel too full and sometimes even sick. And when I don’t finish I feel guilty for wasting the food.
It’s definitely been a process. Now I don’t eat just to finish my plate and I don’t feel guilty; I just save it for the next day or make another meal of my leftovers. And if I can’t save it as leftovers I place it in the compost, which is basically food for the worms, right? And plant food 🙂
How about you? Did you grow up with anything your parents told you that somehow stuck with you in adulthood?
Would love to hear about your own experience.