- Post- Listening to Your Body’s Cues
- Book Review – You’re Not Listening. What You’re Missing and Why it Matters
- Recipe – Arame Seaweed Salad
- Events + Programs in the New Year
The holiday season is upon us. We’re getting into the spirit of celebrating time with family and friends and looking forward to some much-needed downtime. As we begin to slow down, be mindful of listening to your body’s cues as you imbibe in holiday cheer and especially listening to one another with kindness and curiosity.
How do you listen to what your body needs?
Is it around sickness times, hunger or when your mind is preoccupied by other things? Does the mind override your body signals by external influences grabbing your attention, distracting you from what its trying to tell you?
My husband and I recently had Covid. The fatigue we experienced came in waves and was the most difficult part of the illness to recover. It occurred to me that I was trying to control my body rather than tuning in to what it needed. Rest!
There are many ways to listen in! How do you know we are eating the right amount or when we’re hungry, satisfied, or full?
To find this out we must pause before we eat and check in with our body for what it wants. Bringing a mindful awareness of listening to the body’s cues tells us what we need. People overeat not because their body needs food but because they are satisfying an emotional urge, a past experience, or because the clock says its lunchtime.
Surprisingly, the body has its own natural diet system and yet we go on many diets. The body monitors different pH levels of blood, urine, and metabolic levels in the digestive system by the type of alkalizing and acidifying foods we eat. When we eat 80% alkalizing foods (fruits and vegetables) and 20% acidifying foods (proteins, fats, grains, nuts and seeds), our digestive system (and other parts) better function in balance. (See chart).
Another way of observing our body’s cues is understanding how we metabolize our food. Some people are fast oxidizers while others are slow oxidizers. This means, the way our body metabolizes food from digestion to elimination.
Many of us are slow oxidizers and experience these symptoms:
- lower body temperature or easily gets cold hand and feet
- general fatigue or lack of energy
- craves sugar
- hypofunction of the adrenal and thyroid glands
- prone to constipation and sluggish transit time
- weight gain in hips and legs
- craves lighter, more hydrating foods such as fruits and vegetables
- feels weighed down and fatigued after eating heavier foods such as animal protein, fats, nuts, and seeds
Slow oxidizers crave lighter, more hydrating foods such as fruits and vegetables because they feel weighed down and fatigued after eating heavier foods such as animal protein, fats, nuts, and seeds. Satiation comes from smaller portions of healthy fats and proteins when eating lower glycemic foods that regulates/balances blood sugar levels.
You know when you are a fast oxidizer when experiencing these symptoms:
- warm body temperature and does not get cold easily
- more prone to feeling anxious or wound up
- sweats easily
- hyperfunction of the adrenal and thyroid glands
- rapid transit time (digestion)
- tends toward hyperglycemia (high blood sugar)
- weight gain in the abdominal area
- craves heavier foods such as fats, animal protein, nuts and seeds
- does not feel satiated after eating the lighter hydrating foods such as vegetables and fruits
- tends toward hypoglycemic (low blood sugar)
Fast oxidizers crave heavier foods such as fats, animal protein, nuts and seeds because they do not feel satiated after eating lighter hydrating foods such as vegetables and fruits. They need to eat more fats and proteins to be satiated longer (slowing down the breakdown of digestion) because they use more energy metabolizing food faster.
Write out which symptoms your body experiences the most and adapt the type of foods to what your body is telling you. This is a natural process of the body. It’s just the way it is. (There are neutral oxidizers/metabolizers, and their system is more regulated).
I am a slow metabolizer, and everything mentioned above is what I experience. It takes more effort to follow this natural system and when I do it, I feel 100%.
Our body knows what it needs, we must listen with attentive hearing and follow the simple nature of our biological systems.
It’s all connected because the body knows how to heal itself.
Find out more about connecting to your body’s cues in FEED THE BRAIN: A Mindful Eating Approach to Nourish The Body, Heart and Mind, begins January 19th.
I recommend reading this book You’re Not Listening, what you’re missing and why it matters by Kate Murphy. As I delve deeper into mindfulness work and coaching people, its made me think more about what I hear and whether I am really listening to the people around me (as well as my body). There are so many other cues we miss when we talk to one another ( especially now since we see people more online and less face-to face). This book delves into many aspects of listening i.e. speech, the physiology of the ear and hearing system, connectivity, how sounds effect the brain and how gossiping is good for us. Well written and enjoyable to read. Available at the library too.
RECIPE – A Balancing Dish With Holiday Foods
The holidays are a great time to discover new foods that you may not have tried before, (other than the array of holiday sweets and specialty dishes). Tap into your senses of sight, sound, touch, smell, the stomach, mind and heart as you enjoy them.
Here’s a recipe that is good for balancing all the protein and acid foods we eat and likely a new ingredient you don’t eat often.
PROGRAMS + EVENTS
Join me every Tuesday at 5 pm as we PRACTICE TOGETHER in meditation and movement practice. Exploring other meditations and perspectives, we practice together to expand our awareness about mindfulness and reducing stress, emotionally, physically and sensuously. These are currently free drop-in sessions open to everyone who would like to practice in a community for only 45 to 60 minutes . Come and check it out.
FEED THE BRAIN: A mindful eating approach to nourish the body, heart and mind
“This mindful eating program has been exactly what I’ve been looking for. It covered so many other areas that I can apply in my life.” Jennifer
Feed the Brain, begins on Thursday, January 19th to March 9th from 5 to 7pm
Are you tired of counting calories, being on an endless diet or frustrated with your relationship with food? In FEED THE BRAIN, there is no diet or magic remedies. It’s based on mindful awareness practices for connecting to your body, learning about the body’s physiology and the benefits of slowing down the eating process. It will change your understanding about appreciating food with all your senses
HEAL TO HEALTH: A MINDUL PRACTICE FOR COPING WITH STRESS
“I came away with knowledge of what mindfulness was and wasn’t and habits and mindful practices that are good fits for me“. Margie
The next virtual course begins Saturday, January 21st to March 11th from 10am to 12 pm. Based on Jon Kabat Zinn’s mindfulness-based stress reduction program, this eight -week has helped millions of people cope with stress and chronic pain. It is a universal approach being applied in schools, workplaces and hospitals without the use of medications or supplements to calm the mind and relax the body.
Happy Holidays! I hope you enjoyed this post. I’d love to hear from you and am always interested in your feedback or topics you are interested in hearing about.
In good health,