I just started my Passion Quest 6-Week Group Coaching Series this past Wednesday. As part of the program, we are following a whole-food, plant-based meal plan with no added salt, oil or sugar. We are also avoiding common allergens like soy, wheat and peanuts. I started eating this way after attending a wellness retreat last month in Florida. It made me feel so good, I wanted to share what I learned with other women.
I had an interesting conversation with a member last night. We both found that the diet was having a positive psychological impact on us. It reminds me of when I first went vegan. I no longer had the uncomfortable feeling of cognitive dissonance when I hugged my dog, saved a bug and ate a chicken.
This feels remarkably similar. I just sat down for a delicious plate of brown rice cooked with spinach, kale and chickpea salad, lentil and mung beans, raw shredded sweet potatoes, broccoli sprouts and red kraut. It was delicious, beautiful and completely healthy for my body. It put my mind at ease. I didn’t count the calories or worry about protein. I didn’t think about consuming too much oil, sugar, soy, gluten or anything else. I didn’t analyze unfamiliar ingredients. And, I didn’t worry about eating too much.
A diet that seems so restrictive has been absolutely freeing.
There are over 20,000 edible plant species in the world.
Most people have about 10-20 go-to meals.
Changing your diet doesn’t require you to change 20,000 foods, just the 10-20 meals that you eat on a regular basis.
I am a proponent of joy and pleasure in everything I do. I tell my Passion Quest participants that they must LOVE their meals. If you don’t love it, don’t eat it. Food is meant to be pleasurable and satisfying. If you need a dash of salt or oil, it’s okay, just use the best quality, nutrient-dense salt and oil and be aware of how heat impacts the oils you use. Anything you add mindfully in your kitchen will be less than what you would use if you weren’t paying attention.
Isn’t it something?
We don’t even know how to eat anymore.
We’ve been presented with so many packaged products, we’ve forgotten what real food looks like. I’m eating how my grandmother probably ate growing up. Cooking sweet potatoes, rice and lentils. Making salads. Boiling greens. Brewing teas. Pressing juices. Blending sauces and syrups. Making lemonade. Incredibly simple and delicious.
People often say a plant-based diet is too expensive. It can be if you spend a lot of money on processed vegan meats, cheeses and prepared foods. However, a simple vegan diet can save you tons of money, bring your health into alignment and improve your emotional relationship with yourself.
In my workshops, I teach people how to develop a greater sense of self-love. One of my techniques is to have students list the characteristics they’d like to develop in themselves. Maybe you want to be more outgoing, well-read or a better speaker. Maybe you want to learn a new skill like plant-based cooking, roller-skating, riding a motorcycle or painting murals.
Whatever it is, you have to move from wanting to doing.
It’s the doing that makes you look in the mirror and say, “Damn, I’m a baaaad mothafucka!” Even if you don’t always get it right, there’s pride in showing up and putting in the work. The work will always change you for the better. So even if you never master painting the mural or skating backward, you will walk away with lessons rooted in your attempt to do something new.
You will learn to master your life.
Today is the four-year anniversary of my first and only marathon. I wasn’t the fastest, but I showed up.
Today, I encourage you to show up for yourself.
Dream a beautiful future.
Follow your passions.
Live with purpose.
Try new things.
Because, yes, the right food can reduce stress both psychological and physical. Good nutrition improves heart health; reduces cancer and diabetes risk; improves mood, gut health and memory; encourages healthy weight, strong bones and teeth and helps with sleep. My favorite resource for nutritional information and great recipes is the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine. (pcrm.org)
Whatever you do, make sure you’re having fun. Make this life the juiciest journey yet!
I wish you passion, purpose and the realization of your fullest potential!
P.S. The photo is today’s lunch. If you want to join my 6-Week Passion Quest Coaching Series and learn more about eating well and following your dreams, it’s not too late! Click the link below.