A Whole Health Journey

Greetings, and welcome to the brand new Food to Flourish!  This blog has been percolating in my brain for a couple of years, mostly as an online space to record all the ordinary and extraordinary moments that create the content of a person’s life.  Now that I’m in the process of studying holistic nutrition and immersing myself in all things that contribute to a holistic lifestyle, it seems like a good time to get some of those posts out of my head and onto the screen, to share what I’m learning about food, nutrition, healing and all the other parts of life that make up the whole.

Holistic Nutrition…what is it…and why pursue it?

The question I’m always asked is “what is holistic nutrition”?  The dictionary definition of holistic is “relating to or concerned with wholes or with complete systems rather than with the analysis of, treatment of, or dissection into parts; holistic medicine attempts to treat both the mind and the body”.

Our health is determined not only by eating the right foods and getting enough exercise.  The analogy I like here is the whole health cairn as described by Dr. Lissa Rankin.  Everyone’s life consists of a physical body at the top of a stack of stones.  The other stones represent our inner pilot light (the core of who we are deep inside), our relationships with others, our work/life purpose, spirituality, creativity, sexuality, the physical environment around us, money, and mental health.  If any one of those stones is out of balance it affects the stability of the whole stack.  I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling sometimes like my stack is about to topple!

My quest for wellness began with food for the simple reason that we all need to consume food in order to sustain life.  No matter what other things we are doing right, if we are not starting with good nutrition then we’re hindering – if not completely sabotaging – our body’s efforts to attain optimal health.  The quality of the food we eat determines the state of our natural body…you really are what you eatJ

Bring back the FUN

So, what do you think of when you hear the word nutrition?  Do you think of the pleasure of food…how it tastes, smells, sounds…or do you think of what you shouldn’t eat, shouldn’t drink, how many calories to consume and the beneficial foods you need to choke down for the good of your health?  Do you even remember when the basic act of feeding your body became so strewn with obstacles?  Drink milk in order to have strong bones…kale is the new superfood you NEED to be eating…soy is good for you…OOPS! soy is bad for you…low carb is best…fat is evil…I think you know what I’m talking aboutJ

You know deep inside of you that the energy (and the shape!) of your teenage self didn’t transform overnight into the person you saw in the mirror this morning.  So, it stands to reason that having a picture in your mind of how you see your future self a year from now is not going to happen overnight either, right?  So, let’s set a goal (whether lofty or little) and start with a single “skip” in the right direction.  What I’ve tried to do for myself, and what I aim to do with Food to Flourish, is to bring back the joy and, dare I say, the FUN of feeding yourself and your family.  Yes, you will need to try some new foods and you will undoubtedly meet with resistance at some point (from your family or your own sugar-craving self), but you will also experience some successes – and every little bit helps, right?

So, start wherever you are today and make one choice that will move your health in the right direction.  It might be as simple as swapping lemon and sea salt for the bottled dressing on your salad.  Your amazing body-machine will not have to work so hard to process the less-desirables, it will use the good things from the lemon and sea salt, it will have what it needs to eliminate toxins, your mind will know that you’re doing something positive, your emotions will improve, and who knows, you might have more of a spring in your step!

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