I’ve spent a good share of the day trying to write about something I’m not really feeling passionate about. It seemed like a good idea a few days ago. Not so much now.
Want to know how that’s been going for me? I’m sure you can guess.
I’m on my fourth load of laundry (including hanging, folding, and putting everything away), I’ve cleaned the kitchen (including the fridge) and the bathrooms (including toilets). I’ve dusted the entire house, vacuumed the carpets, shook out the rugs, and steam mopped the wood floors.
I’ve run out of house and I only have one more load of laundry to go. And the last load is Quinn’s blanket and toys. And from the look of it, I don’t think she’s going to budge off of her kitty blanket any time soon.
The pressure is on.
So, I’ve decided to punt and write an unplanned post about what’s been taking up way too much space in my mind the last few days.
Now this is not necessarily a bad idea, but unfortunately, for the both of us, I haven’t quite made sense of it all yet.
Be patient with me.
Here it goes…
It is not unusual for people to ask my opinion about nutrition, diet, clean eating, fasting, and such. When asked, I’ve provided my personal experiences, and in many cases, the name of experts (people who has a bunch of letters after their name) and books I feel would be insightful.
So…this past week, the topic of juice cleanses arose. The person I was talking to felt great after three days of nothing but liquids.
I listened and successfully withheld judgement. (Kind of. I kept it all in my head. Honest.)
I was doing all fine and good, until…
she mentioned that her chiropractor, who had told her a juice cleanse would be beneficial, also told her a vegan diet wasn’t healthy.
“You can’t get enough protein.”
So much for self control and keeping my mouth shut.
Now before you stop reading because you think I am going to get all preachy about vegan diets, hear me out. I’m not preaching about the vegan diet.
This is bigger.
I’m preaching about being healthy.
But back to the vegan diet…
I guess it could be, if your vegan food choices were Oreo cookies, potato chips and Diet Coke. Or iceberg lettuce, cucumbers and green tea.
But I believe a vegan diet can be healthy. Life changing even.
This was me in 2012.
Not healthy. Not mentally. Not physically.
What these pictures can’t show you (although you may be able to guess):
- restricting calories
- exercising excessively
- an unhealthy weight/BMI
- sleepless nights
- no period
- a life focused on eating/not eating and my body
Me this past summer.
Vegan for 5 years.
What this picture can’t show you:
- eating intuitively (although always vegan)
- listening to my body when exercising (except when on the treadmill)
- sleeping soundly
- no heartburn/digestive issues
- healthy and stable weight/BMI
- healthy numbers when my blood is tested
- focused on making a difference in this world
So what the heck am I trying to say?
I’m not sure.
Maybe it’s about discovering what works for your body when it comes to the choices you make regarding food. What foods make you feel good? What foods provide you with energy? What can you sustain over the long haul (long haul as in life)?
Maybe it’s about withholding judgement about the choices other people make. Everybody’s body is unique. What’s best for one person may not be the best for another.
Maybe it’s about listening to your body and trusting what it’s telling you. If you are constantly ill, your body is telling you something. If you are always tired, your body is telling you something. If your numbers (weight/BMI/BP/cholesterol/glucose) are not in range, your body is telling you something. If you are hungry all the time, your body is telling you something.
Listen to it.
Maybe it’s about making changes in your life when you realize what you are doing isn’t working. Stop making excuses. Stop rationalizing. If you are stuck in a place you do not wish to be, figure out how to get unstuck. Get help if need be.
Or maybe it’s simply this…
I want to give you hope. I want to let you know you are not alone.
If you are struggling with your health, I pray you find your way to a healthier life. I pray that you make peace with food, your body, or whatever it is that is robbing you of the life you deserve.
I pray that you can begin listening to and honoring your body, so your focus can be on the things in your life that really matter.