Eating Mindfully To Stay Healthy

I really do not believe in making resolutions for the New Year but my decision to change some eating habits coincided with the beginning of January 2018. I figured since I am developing a blog on mindfulness it would be good to include eating mindfully as one of the components of the blog.

I recently suffered from food poisoning after dining at a local restaurant. No one else became ill so I am almost positive that it was the food I ate that day.  I have been recuperating ever since Thanksgiving so this is why I have not posted much lately. But I am back and feeling a lot better and energetic.

I’ve been keeping a journal of what I eat and try to plan my meals a few days in advance. My daughter gave me the idea. Planning meals and shopping for the ingredients should all be done in a meaningful and mindful way. I find myself paying more attention to food labels and looking for expiration dates. I write down my own recipes now, something I never thought to do before. I experiment with new recipes more than I used to before and reflect on the outcomes. I write about how the meal made me feel and if my family enjoyed it.

It is said that when we take our time eating and focus on how the food will fulfill its task of keeping our bodies healthy and strong the food id better digested.

I have always loved to cook. I learned at a very early age. I was a latch key kid and my mother taught me to make rice and other side dishes so that when she got home dinner would be almost half way done. I always watched her carefully. She too had a kind of love affair with food. I learned that food makes everybody happy in one way or another. She taught me that the main and most important ingredient was love. Food is the best path to the heart. We tend to remember and reminisce about the aroma of grandma’s cookies or in my case mom’s soups. The aroma was comforting.

For the holidays I decided to try my luck at making fruit cake. I know you either love it or hate it. I just happen to know a few people who love it. I looked for different recipes and looked at YouTube videos to make sure I followed procedures and directions. I finally decided on this one recipe. I must say I am not one of the people who love fruitcake but the one I made was simply sumptuous. The true taste test was by a dear friend and a relative that let’s just say they have had their share of fruitcake. Well, I received five stars. I felt so accomplished and so proud.

During the confection of this cake I was mindful and very careful because I truly wanted it to be the best. I remember gathering all the fruit in a large bowl and slowly pouring orange juice over the mixture. The aroma was amazing. I purposely did not add any brandy or other alcoholic drink. I used lemon rind and vanilla.

Every day I try to focus on one part of the recipe and try to use as many of the five senses as I can. Since cooking has now become a mindful adventure I cannot tell you how much more content I am after I make a meal. My husband is also a very happy camper.

5 Steps to Follow:

  1. Free your mind. Concentrate on the aromas or the shapes of foods that you put together.
  2. Plan your meal ahead and make sure you have all the ingredients.
  3. Be willing to improvise and be creative
  4. When you taste something, think about where it came from. For example, when you are making a pineapple upside down cake, visualize the fields and how the fruit was picked.
  5. Write down people’s feedback and write down your critique. Take photos of the finished product and keep them in your diary.

 

 

 

Focused Doodling

I doodle a lot. I would say almost everyday. This is something I do almost instinctively. It relaxes me. I love the surprise when I am done.

Practice:

1. Doodle away for about ten minutes.

2. Focus on one thought.

3. Use colored pencils or markers

4. Black and white doodling can also be interesting.  Shade empty areas.

5. Reflect and relax.

 

Mindful Painting

When I paint or draw I feel I have entered a new dimension. I feel free. I focus on one thought and let the paint brush do the rest. Sometimes, I paint with my right hand and sometimes I use my left hand so that I stay focused.  In this painting I switched back and forth. Hope you like it.

Mindful Moments

I love the word moment. Just two syllables. It implies an instant in time that may never repeat itself. Measurable only to the extent that it is memorable or special to someone. Moments become timeless.

Then there is the Aha! moment. I have had a few of those change my life. Someone once said that there is no happiness only moments of happiness.

Precious moments could be classified as moments of happiness. But some moments can be appraised as awkward. Can someone’s awkward moment be another’s precious moment? 

Van Goethe said, “every second is of infinite value.” So we may want to seize the moment to make sure that we stay in the present as much as possible. I want to make sure that the moments I may be able to produce or create for others are touching moments and will be cherished by the receiver or mindful observer. I wrote a poem about a poet who tries to describe the moments in his life that count. Here it is. Please take a moment and reply or comment.

The Poet in the Moment

The poet waited for a moment because it was all he could spare at the time.

He waited for the muse who had promised to visit him everyday to inspire a poem.

In the meantime, moments paraded in his head, This is what he saw:

A moment of glory when he won the race,

The moment he kissed his sweetheart for the first time,

The moment he discovered himself,

The moment faith was restored in his heart.

The proud moment his parents felt when he graduated from college.

The one moment he thought he had lost his mind.

The moment he prayed and asked God to save his mom.

The moment his first son was born.

The moment he remembered what he had forgotten.

Then, he looked up to the sky and saw a falling star

and thought to himself there goes my poem.

#moments#momentum#mindfulmoments

 

Moving Moments

We must be mindful of those singular moving moments that make our lives unique.

Today my mother would have celebrated her 99th birthday. I hear her speak truths

to me when I am in doubt. Happy Birthday, mom!

 

“Do not the most moving moments of our lives find us all without words.”
-Marcel Marceau

 

 

 

Mindfulness to Me – A Recording

Mindfulness to me means holding yourself captive so that nothing else matters.Here is my poem about mindfulness:

One moment in time

It is a magical moment,

one that you can never live again.

It is a moment well spent with a friend,

it is a time to make of yourself a masterpiece.

So that others take you in as their special moment.

A moment in time

is a deep breath

to cleanse the body

and build a spirit.

One moment in time

may connect you with your soul mate

It is a dance in which missing a step will

stop the music playing.

 

One moment in time is a time to be

mindful and calm,

still and in tune with nature

and your being.

It will be a “time to be free.”

Hopefully it will be the one moment for Peace and Love.

Please let me know what mindfulness is to you.

A Mindful Walk

Today I took a mindful walk. I noticed fewer leaves remain on the trees. I heard the neighbors blower going full blast. The wind lifted a bunch of leaves and made them swirl. While other leaves floated gently like parachutes from the sky. I picked up a few acorns and pine cones. I tried to listen to the soft crunch beneath my feet as I walked across the lawn full of yellow and red leaves. took deep breaths and looked up at the blue sky and the sun shining but getting ready to set for the day.

I decided to keep track of the number of steps I take daily trying to be mindfully more active. I was amazed that I had gained about seven thousand steps. This is a good ting I thought. I read somewhere that doing the same amount daily helps keep your weight pretty much the same. Mindful walking can benefit us in many ways. I felt totally relaxed. I also felt energized at the same time. I could honestly say I felt at peace.

When I arrived at the house I sat and traced some of the larger leaves I had collected during my walk. I will post my drawings later.

Practice

Walking mindfully can be practiced anywhere. Set a time. If you do not have a step counter you can always count your steps. Watch you feet as you step. Create a pattern in which to step. You know; right foot first then left or 5 steps to your left and 10 steps to your right. Be creative but most of all be mindful as well.

Happy Walking!!