How I healed my life -mind, body, & spirit- and found happiness, passion, & purpose.
I began this year by trying out a vegan diet for the month of January. I didn’t eat much meat to begin with, only chicken and ham occasionally. I mostly eat seafood, which I’ve tried to cut back on since our oceans are in such horrible shape, and the seafood industry isn’t well regulated or made accountable for anything. I got a lot of questions about why I was trying to be vegan, and really my main motivation for actually trying it to was to commit myself to exploring alternative cheese options. See, I had made the mistake of watching some horrible videos on the dairy industry, and maybe not all dairy farms function that way, but I don’t want to be a part of any industry that tolerates that kind of treatment to living things. So, I said goodbye to cheese, the only hard part about veganism for me, and I began my journey to eating healthier.
I failed, a lot. Like every other day, at least. It was HARD! If you aren’t vegan or haven’t tried a vegan challenge, then you have NO IDEA how many products out there are not vegan. It was eye opening, astounding, and quite infuriating to be honest. I couldn’t eat the chips I loved, I couldn’t eat any candy I couldn’t eat the roasted potatoes I love to make because the seasoning ‘may contain milk.’ It was ridiculous. Also, the fake cheese was gross. I still plan to try different mac n cheese recipes to find one that’s an acceptable replacement, but until then, the real thing wins. I felt defeated and deflated. I felt like a failure and a hypocrite. I didn’t want to support the system, but I couldn’t give it up.
I also wanted to just clean up my diet this year, no I don’t eat much chips or candy, but I wanted to include more greens and veggies. So I subscribed to the Clean Eating magazine. It gives me new seasonal recipes every month! I flip through it, decide what looks good, and I put the ingredients on my next grocery list. It’s been a really great way to learn how to prepare new, delicious healthy meals every month.
I used to hate grocery shopping. Literally, I’d put it off for weeks because I hated it so much. It was such a pain to sift through all of the options to find the one with the least amount of crap in it, or to trust that what was in the organic section wasn’t just the regular stuff with a sticker on it (I watched an employee do that one time believe it or not). It was so exhausting! I had to find a new way, so I started shopping at a grocery store that only has organic food. The selection is smaller, so it’s easier to find what I want, and the produce section is less intimidating. This year I committed to learn what everything is in the produce section. It’s really sad that so many of us young adults haven’t had to learn what many of it is, or how to prepare it. I honestly was embarrassed to admit that I didn’t know what some of it was, or how to prepare almost any of it. I needed the push, and shopping at Mom’s Organic Market along with the recipes from Clean Eating has really pushed me to figure it out, expand my options, and clean up my diet.
My diet change has also been motivated by healing my hormones. A couple of years ago I quit taking birth control because it was wreaking havoc on my body. Every time I switched pills to try something different, I’d have a different problem. Sometimes I’d stop having periods, sometimes they were heavy, sometimes they still weren’t regular, and sometimes I’d get cystic acne. I finally decided to stop trying to find one that works so I could give my body a break and time to heal. I wanted to heal my hormones, so I did Nalaya Chakana’s Happy Healthy Hormones course. She had a long struggle with her hormones; it took her a long time to learn everything she needed to learn to heal them. In an effort to help others reduce the amount of struggle, she compiled everything she learned into this course to share. It’s jam packed with knowledge about hormones, the different systems of the body, how the systems interact, and how diet has such a massive impact on them. I learned so much about how I can adjust my diet throughout the month to support my body in getting rid of excess estrogen, reducing pain, and clearing my skin. It has been a life changing adjustment that I would recommend to every single female I know. I also use an herbal tincture that supports hormonal balance, along with other tinctures for other uses. I love using natural remedies and healing my body holistically. Our bodies are made of different systems, but they’re all connected and work together.
I’m only 6 months into changing my diet and using it to support my hormones, but the changes I’ve seen are astronomical. If you don’t care about what you put into your body, then you’re not going to get good results. Whether that manifests as being tired, lazy, weak, sick, or hormonally wrecked, it will find a way to show you it’s not happy. We only get one body and one life to live.
Written by: Heather Robinson
Photo Credit: Crayola England