Spinning off of last weeks Total Health Tuesday blog post, this week are looking at “When We Eat” – touching on seasonal foods, and daily eating habits.
Our ancestors ate seasonally because they had no choice. Fresh greens grew in spring, fruit ripened in summer, roots vegetables kept them going in the fall, and people relied on animal food to get them through the winter. Eating locally grown food in accordance with the season will help you live in harmony with yourself, your body and the earth. Because produce is available year round, choosing what’s in season can be confusing. Generally look for ripe, fresh produce in abundance and check with your local farmers to get location-specific assistance for each season.
Pat attention to the times of the day you eat. Most of us eat habitually at regular clocked times. Few of us pause to check weather we are really hungry when we eat. We use food as entertainment and comfort weather we are socializing or alone, passing time or feeling bored.
Time of day determines how well our bodies assimilate food. Ayurvedic philosophy advocates for people to eat their biggest meal in the middle of the day, because its the best time for our bodies to take in and digest a large meal. If you look at many cultures in Europe, this practice is very common. You may find this works best for your body, or you might find you feel best when you have a large meal at breakfast or dinner instead. Some people eat a large breakfast and lunch and then have a small snack for dinner; others do best with five small meals a day. Experiment with the sizes and timing of your meals; only you can determine what is best for your body. Each meal is an experiment. take time to listen to your body and notice what it needs.
Many health practitioners, dietitians, and nutritionists emphasize that we should not eat after 7:00 or 8:00pm at night. When we eat digestion slows and food tends to stay in our stomachs the whole night. Restless sleep can result from late night eating and affect the next day’s energy. Something for you to explore, using your own body as your laboratory!
Source: Integrative Nutrition by:Joshua Rosenthal