Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Forks Over Knives

I try not to get on a high horse when it comes to food and nutrition. I was a vegetarian until I was 13 and then due to family changes added meat into my diet. Having a very noticeable dairy allergy from a young age, milk products have never been a large part of my life. Health through food has always been a forefront topic in my family and I feel almost over-educated in terms of 'alternative health'. My diet when I am home is very simple and since I am not into cooking elaborate dishes you can usually identify/see each ingredient (which makes me very hesitant to cook for or host people).

Recently I stopped eating as much meat just to save some money at the grocery store. I also am feeling the effects of getting older and want to make sure my diet is taking care of my changing hormones, bones, joints, and skin. My mom is a wealth of information on the topic so I have been adding more variety in terms of veggies to help out with my calcium in particular. I know how to shop sales and prepare meals that reach far past the typical salad. (Don't get me started on my new obsession with kale - gasp!) However, on my recent trip to New Orleans I found myself comfortably fitting into the vegan diet of my host and feeling quite marvelous. It wasn't difficult since I had already cut out everything except fish and eggs, and I don't eat dairy anyway.

Since being home I haven't stuck to it 100% and I can tell a difference in my energy levels and general health. I stumbled across this documentary on Hulu last night which I would encourage everyone to watch. It is a little over an hr long but it is so worth your time. Backed by scientific research and multiple M.D.'s it is shown that the average American diet is the CAUSE of major diseases. Now this is absolutely not new information to me at all. My mind is not blown by what they are saying -- the lies that are told to us in terms of the USDA, the food pyramid, dairy, meat, etc. -- it is simply wonderful to see them presented in such a clear, scientific manner.

There are a lot of sites reviewing and challenging the film - which is fine. Do your research and come to your own conclusions. I really just wanted to share and bookmark a film that has made a huge impact on a current and very personal life decision.

"Let your food be your medicine and your medicine be your food" ~Hippocrates (because I would rather spend a little more on my food now than thousands on health care later)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

True Story

 If success has continued to elude you in the development of certain types of relationships in your life, whether in romance or friendship or professional contexts, it may be because you're treating this particular relationship-type as too utterly different from the other types you may find easier to develop. In other words, if you're so good at making friends, why are you approaching dating situations as if they require following a completely distinct set of rules? Or why aren't you treating that annoyingly inescapable co-worker with the same level of peaceful acceptance you learned to foster with your pesky sibling? People are people… and no matter the role (chosen or involuntarily acquired) they play in your life, the same basic habits of authentic exchange and sympathetic understanding will serve you well. You may find yourself better able to shine in whatever relational context(s) have previously tripped you up if you stop putting these certain types of people in special categories… a complicating device which only makes you act weirder than you otherwise would.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Rebecca Furguson

It has been awhile since I have felt the desire to share a new artist. There has been some great music flying around this spring/summer, but all are sophomore albums or just fun pop radio tunes. My summer mixed CD playlist is one that I don't care to share ;) 

However, I think I found Rebecca while poking around on NPR awhile back. Apparently she was on X Factor and blew everyone away. I don't watch TV, so I missed out on that. heh. Her first single is downright f'ing awesome and I am actually impressed with the rest of her album. A little bit soul, a little bit Adele, a little bit Alicia Keys, this chick has a throwback sound without being a copycat. Hop on Spotify and check out my favorites: Fairytale, Mr. Bright Eyes, and Fighting Suspicions. Here is the only song you can really find on YouTube right now.


What comes to mind when you say the word toxic? Generally speaking it is something that you don't want in your vicinity, never mind physical body. Very few people, besides comic book villains (who have childhood issues) would like to claim that they spread toxicity.

On a tangible level, toxic things are unnatural substances that cause harm to whatever they come in contact with. Cancer, sickness, illness, or even a condition that turns hereditary. Basically,  your body rejects the toxic item, or cells go crazy trying to process it -- resulting in malignant tumors, or clusters of f'ed up cells. It's not a pretty picture. We all know what happens to towns located near nuclear plants, or get runoff from an industrial site. It's all quite hush, hush to preserve the greater good that is being created at the aforementioned monstrosities.

On a less visible level toxic emotions and words can cause the same things. What the hell are you talking about? Anger and hatred are probably the first ones that come to mind. I don't disagree, but I find they are the byproduct (or tumor, if you will) of root toxins: jealousy, selfishness, egotism, bragging, narcissism, and others along the same line.

Where is toxicity found in your life? I have been asking myself this question lately. This has been the year of Love, and while it is going very well, I still find that covering everything up with a blanket of Love has not really fixed my knee-jerk reactions to certain situations--or people. Recognizing toxic words or actions has been a really clarifying process (no pun intended). My response to this question has given me peace in more than one situation and has helped me figure out some decisions for, well, the direction of the rest of my life. I think that the motive behind words are what determines if something is toxic or not. If you are looking to stir the pot then maybe it isn't such a good idea to open your mouth.

This is a fairly vague blog, on purpose. There are some very clear elements in my life that I find are toxic. Some are self-inflicted, and some are found in the community of which I have been part of for many years. Toxicity sucks the joy, companionship, friendship, and respect out of a group of people faster than straight-up anger. Why? Because it is insidious. You don't even really know it is happening until you realize that your general emotional response to anything related to the group is downright revulsion. And I would rather be angry than repulsed.

In addition, I look for when and where I might be spreading toxic emotions or words. 'Cause that ish just isn't acceptable. Hold your tongue. Respect the other person. Listen. Appreciate. Build them up, don't prove yourself. Perfect? Hell no. Life is a process, and this is just one more step towards becoming the person that I am ok leaving behind when I die.