There is a whole community of health conscious bloggers out there. In a world where there is so much conflicting information, where widely available foods are poisonous to some of us, where awareness of what food actually does to our system is so small, where you can feel so alone when you discover that what you ate your entire life is making you sick, in a world like this one, a community is a life saver. I am grateful to have found it, just like I am grateful I found the book blogging community when I needed it most.
Now it seems that I need both and this blog reflects the changes that my life is going through.
A self-care retreat - this is what Valerie from City Life Eats and Cheryl from Gluten-Free Goodness have organised for the month of July to remind themselves and others about how important it is to take good care of ourselves. Everyone is invited to reflect on taking better care of their needs, both physical and spiritual. Check out Valerie's thoughts and Cheryl's thoughts and participate yourself, if you wish.
As for me, well, as most of you know, since I've been going on and on about it, I recently discovered that I am gluten- and dairy-intolerant. Even more reently, as in last week, I discovered that I am also wheat-intolerant. How do I know? I have psoriasis and I can tell within a day if something didn't agree with me, because my psoriasis turns bright red and itchy and incredibly unpleasant. For gluten and dairy, I also get stomach issues, brain fog, chills and a variety of other symptoms, including an almost debilitating fatigue. No fun at all.
It makes me happy that I can now recognise when something has made me sick. For so long, I thought that's what normal felt like.
In the context of this and in the context of my neverending journey to lose 10-15 kilos, I have been thinking about health a lot lately. Here are some things I am realising and aiming towards:
- Food is supposed to nourish us and keep us healthy. Choosing foods that are good for me equals treating myself with care and respect. Choosing junk foods puts strain on my body and doesn't give me the energy I need to tackle my busy life. Same goes for my family.
- Eating out is a risk. Pretty much every time I've eaten out in the past few months, I've been ill afterwards. Everything works much better if I know exactly what's gone into my food.
- I can't be an angel all the time. :-) I will want to go out to eat, I will want comfort junk food. What I'm aiming for is to make the healthiest choices I can, most of the time. This once-in-a-while rule obviously relates only to the foods that don't make me sick. Those are totally off limits because they're just not worth it.
- Excercise, ah, excercise. I find it pretty much impossible to work excercise into my schedule. I started running and couldn't keep it up, I started all sorts of programs on the Wii and couldn't keep them up either. I've resigned myself to the fact that with a demanding full-time job, a small child and a theatre hobby, excercise time won't be available to me. The one thing I can do is walk as much a I can.
- Peace of mind - where are you? I really, really want to become a calmer person. I don't like raising my voice at home, I don't like inner turmoil keeping me up at night, I want to be zen. But this is the one part of self-care that I have no idea how to reach. Ideas, anyone? I'm no good at meditation. Any other ideas? ;-)