Being a Vegan Abroad – Part 3 – Digesting information

How was your Christmas? Did you observe your diet and emotions?

And have you noticed a relationship between the two? What got you reaching for the chocolate or the booze? How were you feeling when you just kept on eating even when you were full?

We had a lovely vegan Christmas dinner here at our resort. They’re very accommodating to a vegan diet, although there was some confusion with our order, which meant we had our Christmas dinner on Boxing Day! But we still had delicious vegan food on both days.

At this time when we often eat more than usual, I want to take a few moments to explore digestion in this next video. So I ask you:

How is your body at digesting information and situations?

Do you have digestive issues – irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), heartburn or other digestive irritations? The digestive system isn’t just about digesting food and drink. It tries to help you digest information or situations and will make adaptations to keep you safe. But your body can only respond ‘literally'; it can’t tell the difference between real and perceived danger.

Observing what you eat and your emotions while eating can help you unlock the triggers that might be causing your digestive problems. So what information or situation is your digestive system helping you with?

Conflict

When I’m locked in conflict, my body tries to adapt. For example, I have found that, when I find something difficult to take, like an opinion I really don’t agree with or someone forcing their way of doing things on me, this really affects my stomach. I really just can’t digest it. So, if I eat at this time, I feel quite uncomfortable. Also, if I am feeling really angry about something, I have an uncomfortable feeling in my stomach and just have no appetite. In fact, if I have eaten, I tend to wish I hadn’t and feel a bit sick.

As a teenager I used to have chronic IBS, once referred to as ‘spastic colon’ by a doctor, which I thought was awful. It soon became clear that a ‘syndrome’ meant “we don’t really know what causes it or what to do about it”. I was given orange ‘Fybogel’ to help me go to the loo, which had no effect at all. I even once tried yeast tablets… As you can imagine, I blew up like a balloon! I learnt that for me, the symptoms I suffered with IBS were representative of me holding on, being angry and not being able to let it go. I needed to understand it and therefore my body held onto it until I did understand it. Watch the video to find out more:

So, what is you body trying to digest and how is it trying to help you? Notice what you’re eating when you suffer symptoms – do you have an association with a type of food or drink, or time of day you’re eating? How are your symptoms connected to your emotional state?

Stay tuned to see how we get on being vegans on a cattle farm over the new year!

To find out more about Conscious Health Practice check out our website www.conscioushealthpractice.com.

Being a Vegan Abroad – Part 2

When I posted my first video from Australia last week, I intended to keep a video diary about what it’s like being a vegan abroad. However, I hadn’t banked on going into ‘second phase’ – the rest, repair and replenish stage – within a few days of being away, on holiday, meaning I’ve spent much of the last week getting over a bout of flu.

So, for this video I’ve decided to reflect on my relationship with food and observe how it has been changing during our travels and especially how it differed while I was recovering from the flu. Apologies for the background noise of the sea in some of the video!

Managing our relationship with food is complicated, especially emotionally, so I invite you to become curious and observe your thoughts and emotions and how they may be related to what you choose to eat.  I also invite you to eat slowly, consciously and mindfully. Be aware and present as you eat. What’s going on in your mind, body and emotional state?

What would you do if faced with a dish that you shouldn’t eat because of the moral or ethical choices you’ve made (like I was)? I look forward to hearing from you.

To find out more about Conscious Health Practice check out our website www.conscioushealthpractice.com.

Being a Vegan Abroad – Part 1

I’m travelling around Australia for the next few weeks and I thought it would be helpful while I’m away to begin with an exploration of my relationship with food. As a vegan, I’ve been wondering how easy it will be to eat healthily and stay satisfied while on my travels, especially as it’s the Christmas and New Year period.

Thankfully, it is so far proving easier than I thought. Thai Airways were very good at accommodating the vegan diet, even though we weren’t quite sure how that was going to work when booking our flights! Here’s a selection of food we’ve had so far on our trip:

Nutrition is one of the areas we look at in Conscious Health Practice, so I’m keen to observe my food choices and my emotional relationships with food while I’m away. I’ll be sharing my observations with you in some short videos, the first of which I recorded on our first morning in Sydney:

What are your thoughts about your own diet? Please feel free to comment and ask me questions. I will only have intermittent internet access on my travels but I promise to check in periodically to read your feedback and respond to your questions.

To find out more about Conscious Health Practice check out our website www.conscioushealthpractice.com.