Your diet is math. It is simple like math: if you add this, then it will equal this. Of course depending on what you are adding to. Meaning that your unique bio identity is what you are adding or subtracting from through the foods that you eat. Just like with math, you can go too far in either direction. At first it may be necessary to subtract certain foods from your diet that have been linked to inflammation, but if you diet becomes too simple or too homogenous then it may be time to add some new kinds of foods in.
I find for myself that I have done a good job of subtraction, but this leaves me eating the same things over and over again. Then I feel bored by my food choices and I start to crave the sugar, alcohol and processed food that I have worked so hard to eliminate. Ayurveda relies on the science of the six tastes to determine what foods are necessary but it may be even simpler than that. I digress.
If you are not as far along the path, it can be useful to start eliminating certain foods from you diet. Start with refined sugar and then move on to bread. Notice what is happening. Is your health improving? It will be hard to maintain the motivation if you are not aware of the beneficial changes taking place. As your health improves, you may also misinterpret your frustration with food with other frustrations. If this happens, you will think that cutting out more and more foods is the answer to feeling good.
In order to revitalize your trust in food you may want be present of the other frustrations in your life.
Food is only one avenue toward improved health and may not be the quickest route for you. In addition to this, you can develop a one sided relationship with food where you lose your trust in its ability to nourish you. In order to revitalize your trust in food you may want be present of the other frustrations in your life. Often time’s restrictive diets can be used as a distraction from the feelings you may be experiencing. When you are not focused on restriction then the feelings come back.
In Ayurveda some foods that are commonly restricted are correlated with nourishment. This nourishment on the physical level also takes place on the emotional level. If you consistently subtract foods from your diet then the restriction can become too much and you may have to work yourself up to trying something that you have given up. This is where the listening and mindfulness mentioned before comes into play. Diet is about more than ironclad discipline and even the most well researched diets may not work for everyone.
Certain foods can always be extracted, such as processed, synthetic, chemically-laden non-foods. Remember that your ancestors were omnivores and they relied on diversity. Our industrialized diets are already a monocrop in a lot of ways, and so additional restriction of whole foods will leave you craving something. The best way to ensure diversity is to try new foods. Every time you go shopping, try and find something you have never tried. Have you tried the following foods?
- forbidden rice?
- broccoli sprouts?
- ostrich meat?
- quail eggs?
- adzuki beans?
- rhubarb stalks?
- macadamia nuts?
- red quinoa?
- fresh turmeric?
By subtracting the right foods and adding in new alternatives then you can change your relationship to food so it nourishes both your physical and emotional body. If you are not sure what to subtract and what to add then consider enlisting the help of an Ayurvedic practitioner. They have been trained in math and will be able to guide the process and encourage more mindfulness.
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