Over the last few weeks, I have been pondering over the issue of diet and health and honouring my mind, body and spirit. As we progress into the 21st century, eyes are turned towards how food is affecting our health. Top of the list is Obesity and Cancer, followed closely by Diabetes and many autoimmune diseases such as Fibromyalgia.
But above all the rules about what to eat and what not, is knowing the truth for our own bodies that count.
I have studied the subject of food and diet for over forty years, not least because I have a weight and food issue myself. I have been very overweight, and very slim, now at the age of seventy-five I am somewhere in between. Funnily enough, I am the weight that I was when I went on my first slimming diet at the age of nineteen. So, on the one hand, I have wasted my time and effort, but more importantly, I have learnt a lot about my body that I would not have known without having to watch my weight
And I have written books and blogs and done a few radio interviews. And my life has been enriched because of what some may see as a problem. When I see people who are suffering because of misinformation over the years about what works and what does not, my heart goes out to them, because I can see that I too could have suffered because of the lack of knowledge about what suits my body.
I am not talking about any particular way of healthy eating, but experimenting and finding what suits our individual needs. Some may eat meat, others not. Some may eat raw food and others not. A low carbohydrate diet is for many people, and one reason for that is that most carbohydrate food these days is high in sugar and refined.
What is almost certain is that eating the processed junk that saves time and money, whether they are proclaimed healthy or not, is damaging our health.
We simply need to be more aware, conscious and experiment on what suits our bodies, way of life and beliefs and honouring them.
We have been misled for many years now about what we should and should not eat.
Take fat, for instance. In the 1970s we were led to believe that we should not eat fat. There was even a slimming empire based on that and based their diet on no fat at all, and we are still trying to break the habit of eating low-fat products.
But eventually, scientists have realised that low fat is unhealthy and that the body needs a certain amount of healthy fat.
What about those who eat a lot and get away with it?
That is a myth. There are people who seem to get away with it, but eventually, find that they have not. My husband was skinny all his life, but after years of a bad diet, he had Type 2 Diabetes.
However, I have observed that people with no food issues are aware of when to stop eating, what to eat, have consistency around food and probably eat very little. Even those who we may think to eat a lot, and remain slim and fit have a point where they stop eating for a while. Most people with weight issues, most likely have a history of dieting one minute and binge eating the next.
But I believe that finding the truth about your own needs is paramount for healthy eating. I wonder how many people who live on the processed junk sold to us, give a thought to the damage that they may be doing to their health?
So, in general, I am convinced that if we eat a healthy diet, we are already somewhat conscious.
Now I have realised that at least for me, I want to take this a step further, and turn my consciousness into honouring my body, mind and spirit.
I do this by asking myself before I eat three questions.
Am I honouring my body mind and spirit by eating this particular food?
If my creator was standing in front of me, would I offer this food to them?
Am I eating this for comfort or nurture?
Let’s take them one at a time.
Am I honouring my body mind and spirit by eating this particular food?
In other words, I have studied and experienced the results of eating wheat. I know that I can eat a little, especially products made with Spelt flour. But because I had an eating disorder, namely Bulimia, in the past, I know that it can lead to a binge, and secondly, it bloats my body and leaves me very uncomfortable and lethargic. So; would I be honouring my body? No because of the damage it can do to me. My mind? Yes, because it leaves me in a foggy state. My Spirit? Yes, because I feel that I will have dishonoured my body.
If my creator was standing in front of me?
Is this food pure enough and as clean as I can make it? Or is it Frankenstein food that can damage this wonderful creation that is taking me through my time on earth?
Am I eating this for comfort or nurture?
Well in a way they are both the same up to a point. But if I am not really hungry, and eating for comfort, is that viable at this moment? Will I be able to stop at just one or two, or go on to a binge? However, if I am really hungry or my body clock is telling me something, then eat.
I may add here that there will be times when our body craves something. Usually, that is a sign that we need something in that particular food. Also, four o’clock in the afternoon is a very popular time for sugar cravings. I usually have a cup of tea with some stevia in it. (However, there are some people who would not be able to do that because it would set off a craving for sugar.)
So there are no rules with healthy eating. We need to learn about what is suitable for our body. There will be times when we get it wrong, but that is the part of the learning process.
And to do this, we can learn to trust that process.
I am still learning, but can suddenly see where I have been going wrong.
At the end of my book, The Truth Has Set Me Free; I talk about how I finally overcame my problem of depression. And it was to stop beating myself up over being depressed in the first place. And it is just the same with what I eat.
What I have been doing all my life is trying to live by a set of rules, and in some regimes, you could call it dogma. When I have gone wrong in the past, I have beat myself up because I haven’t stuck to my diet, I have gone onto binge eating and not caring. I am writing this to myself as well as anyone else.
So now I am finding that those three questions have become a daily habit that has made me more aware, and perhaps it may work for many others too.
An example of Ageing With Vitality Monty Shulberg.
The Years pass by
How quickly we dare not say
They come and go
A journey that seems so long
But stay strong
‘Cos the moon not visible in the day
Spreading its beauty just at night
Charming and bright
Painting and poem by Monty Shulberg.
In the last three months, I have met a remarkable man; Monty Shulberg.
He is an artist, and wonderful conversationalist, and also a poet it seems. And he is ageing with vitality. He is 91 years of age.
He is frail in body and also is in the early stages of dementia. But he is out and about, and is a remarkable man, and not ruled by disabilities. He uses a frame to walk and seems to know a lot of people.
I feel so privileged to have met Monty, and we meet regularly, sometimes with Tom, my husband, either in Tavistock where he lives or in Plymouth, to chat about the meaning of life. We have so much in common on that ground,
His history is of teaching deaf children to listen with vibration. He was trained as an audiologist and travelled all over the world, helping parents and children when it seemed that others had given up on them.
Hence the painting at the bottom which he titled “The Sorcerers Apprentice” Which spoke to me from a shelf in a coffee shop in Tavistock. I like to think that it was Monty speaking to me because I contacted him for details of the price and we met up and bonded straight away.
For more on Monty, and to see more of his paintings, here is his twitter account.
Before you embark on any programme for losing weight, it is worth while asking yourself why?
Once you decide that you are in no doubt that you want or need to lose, and you are not just jumping on the proverbial bandwagon of not accepting and loving yourself, the next step is to make an intent. But we shall talk about that in another article.
There are many reasons why people want to lose weight. Among them are the following:
A special occasion
Your own wedding
Modelling or dancing
You are obese or really overweight
You just want to have a flat belly
Post baby fat.
Post illness or surgery
Read on and consider which ones you think apply to you.
Do you look at yourself in the mirror and wish you were seven pounds or so lighter?
Are you being realistic about this?
Have you ever been 7lbs lighter than you are today?
If so, how long ago was it?
Do you have two sets of clothes, one each of the bearing of the 7lbs, or its absence when you have starved it off?
Will being 7lbs lighter help with all other problems in your life? If so, which ones are they?
Would you really be healthier? Would the 7lbs less help with such things as arthritis, for instance?
How would you plan to lose the 7lbs?
What are your plans for your future eating habits, when you have lost it?
In this day of television, magazines and social networks, it is becoming more common for girls even at the age of ten to be looking at themselves and asking their friends if they are fat. Recently I was with a thirteen-year old in a restaurant, asking her mother how many calories were in a particular food on the menu. She has taken on board the message that to have a rounded womanly body is unacceptable.
Young girls talk endlessly about what they look like in a particular outfit, fretting more about whether it makes them look fatter than the colour or style. A lot of damage is done through peer pressure, and a lot of misinformation is handed out too!
People suffering from eating disorders, such as Anorexia or Bulimia often begin their problems by worrying about calories. But losing weight by counting calories is a myth and this subject will be covered in more detail later in the book.
Consider how much you allow other people to influence what size you think you should be.
Nearly every day newspapers or magazines feature a celebrity who has either put on or lost weight. Too much on or too much off. Do you think it is fair that these celebrities have to live their lives forever having to worry about being caught on camera and personal details about their bodies discussed by all? Sometimes it can just be the camera angle. Or a certain look on their faces and the camera has caught something that the journalist interprets the wrong way. But it sells papers, and that is the excuse they give time and time again!
What is so tragic about this is that people are taken in, especially young girls and increasingly young men too. In June 2012, there was a story about a fourteen-year old girl who had committed suicide. She had developed Bulimia and even though she was beautiful, she had been worried about her weight. She had ended up loathing herself! After this event, one or two magazines started to change their ways, but still the tendency is to spot the skinny celebrity and how she did it.
Consider what you think about how the media treats celebrities.
Which magazines could be having a negative influence on you and how you perceive your body?
A SPECIAL OCCASION
Do you have a holiday coming up?
Are you going to a friend or a relative’s wedding?
Are you going to be the mother of the bride?
So you want to lose weight for that. Do you really think so? Because if you are only losing the weight for the holiday bikini then you will most likely soon put it back on again. If you buy an outfit for the wedding, lose the weight, look and feel your best after a lot of starvation and then put it all on again, would you consider that to be a waste of time and money? The outfit worn only once ends up at the back of the wardrobe!
Consider how many times you have done this, or know someone who has.
YOUR OWN WEDDING
You really want to lose weight so that you will look your best on the big day, which is understandable, and many people do it. But my observation is this; time and time again, the bride or groom or even both go on a diet. They may even join a slimming club to do it.
They get down to the desired weight, and they walk down the aisle looking their very best. Then when the reception starts, it is time to let their hair down, and all thoughts of the diet are put into the past, and forgotten. It doesn’t matter anymore; they achieved their goal for the day so now it’s time to eat, drink and be merry. The diet is over and within a matter of days the weight starts to go back on and within weeks they are right back to where they started before the diet!
Why do people do this? After all, the couple loved one another enough to decide to get married before the diet! They then decided that they really needed to change. They needed to look better than they already did. So in order to commit to each other they needed to look different?
That one day as a slim person was good. They looked good. They were slim. But suddenly once they were married it didn’t matter. By losing that weight, they lowered their metabolism. Their bodies went into famine mode and started to preserve every little bit of fat, and from the wedding onwards it is downhill all the way! They have got themselves into a lifetime of struggling with their weight for the sake of one day!
What are your thoughts about this?
Have you or someone you know ever lost weight for their wedding?
How successful were they and did they keep the weight off afterwards?
What excuses did they have if they put it back on?
Do you consider that it was worth it?
Are you thinking of losing weight for your own wedding? If so, maybe you could consider what I have just said and decide that this won’t be just another diet, but will be a change of
MODELLING OR DANCING.
Many people in these professions are living on starvation diets. They strive to be an unrealistic weight, which can lead them to becoming emaciated. Models have become so thin that they seem to look all skin and bones. Eating disorders such as Anorexia and Bulimia are very common within these professions.
Have you or someone you know been in danger of doing this?
In these cases, many people need professional help.
What are your thoughts about this?
YOU ARE OBESE OR REALLY OVERWEIGHT
Now we come to the people who really need to lose weight. They are obese or overweight more than the odd stone. They may have already been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. Perhaps they may have had a heart attack or some other heart problem.
Or they might have got to the point where getting about is very difficult. Seats on public transport are getting too small, or they cannot walk very well. Their joints are playing up and painful.
These people have a vast choice in how they are going to do it. There are so many diets around that they just do not know where to start. Each diet is giving them different information.
The magazines feature people who have lost the weight, and they look terrific! I featured in one myself and had a wonderful day having a makeover and being pampered for the photo shoot, and it made me feel fantastic!
Bookshops and the internet abound with different diets. Headlines in the paper scream at you. Special editions include a new diet. But most of them are just a different version of a low calorie regime.
Whichever diet you choose, if you survive beyond the first few days and stick to it strictly, and it is your first diet, you will lose weight. You may lose 10% of the weight you want; you may lose it all. If you do get close to your goal, you may find losing the last few pounds just as big a struggle as the whole diet put together.
If you are with a slimming club, you may, as I have a few times, have the members cheering and clapping when you can shout “I’ve done it!” It’s a great feeling! Then the leader hands you your badge and explains the maintenance programme, and so begins the struggle to keep the weight off!
However, it is well known that 98% of people who lose weight this way put it back on again and many people put on even more than they have lost. I don’t want to play devil’s advocate here for those who are perhaps already struggling with losing weight on a diet, but you may want to think about what you are going to do when you reach your goal.
I am not saying at this point that you should abandon what you are doing. Just consider what you are doing is for life, and use the thoughts in this book to help you to map it out.
Find a way of eating that will be for life and not just to lose weight.
Remember the statistics say that 98% of people who lose weight, put it back on again and more besides.
This is because they are not adopting a new lifestyle and way of eating and the way that they think!This is worth repeating.
Think about your plans to keep the weight off, once you have lost it.
Read and research to find out what you will think would suit you if you could choose how to do this.
This book will give you a framework to make a start on designing a diet for life.
POST BABY FAT
Women are designed to have babies! Even if they do not want a baby by choice or cannot have them for some reason, women’s bodies have all the biological necessities for reproduction. Even before you conceive, your body prepares itself every month, just in case.
Women’s hips are wider than men’s. Her thighs are thicker. (That is why you will find that if you try to wear men’s jeans the waist is disproportionate to the hips and thighs.)
Her fat storage system is different; that is why men lose weight more easily than women.
When she has given birth, she is expected in nature to breastfeed the baby. So she preserves her fat and needs nourishing foods to do that.
The womb takes six weeks to revert to its nearly normal size. She has flabby skin around the abdominal area, which if she is lucky or works out at the gym will gradually retract back and leave her with a reasonably flat stomach. But most women find it very difficult and may not ever get that flat stomach back. So what do women do?
A lot of them put up with it, because they are too busy or tired to do anything about it, which is natural.
Or they go on a restrictive slimming diet!
Consequently, they are not getting the proper nourishment that their body needs at this time. Often they just give up and stuff themselves with takeaways or whatever they can get their hands on!
Women can end up feeling that somehow there is something wrong with them, when they see celebrities getting their figures back within a very short time. They fret and worry and talk endlessly about getting to the gym to get back in shape. Why?
I wonder if it is because they are trying to live up to a higher standard than nature intends. If she eats properly with good, nourishing, real food, she will find that she is nourishing the baby properly, and herself and her family. She won’t have to join a gym for weight loss, although she may want to tone up! She certainly will not do all this on crisps and takeaways!
But she will stand a better chance of gradually toning up and being healthy if she does not go onto a restrictive calorie counted diet.
If you have recently had a baby and are struggling with this, what ideas have you had to lose weight?
Do you have a plan for healthy eating?
AFTER ILLNESS OR SURGERY
Due to lack of mobility, boredom or just people bringing them too many chocolates, people often lose weight at first during an illness or after surgery and then proceed to put it back on and more besides.
Women who have had a hysterectomy often put weight on due to hormones being disrupted and causing depression, but more often than not it is because of eating comfort foods and because of boredom. However, if it is just the hormones then the amount of weight increase should be no more than about 5 lbs.
This can apply to any weight gain when hormones are involved, including taking the contraceptive pill. Many people who are grossly overweight will blame the fact that they are on the pill. But the difference is really only a few pounds.
I’m afraid that the rest is because of what they eat, which is more than likely processed, refined carbohydrate.
Take an honest look at the reasons why you think you may have put on weight if you have suffered from an illness or disability.
I JUST WANT TO HAVE A FLAT BELLY.
Nature designed women to be rounded. Only fifty years ago, Marilyn Monroe was hailed as a star. She would be referred to as a celebrity in modern times, but Marilyn was outstanding. The reason for this was her figure, of full breasts, narrow waist, wide hips, and a rounded belly.
What was referred to as an hour glass figure.
She was the equivalent of a size fourteen these days.
Not that we have to put up with a bulging belly, but we were not designed to have the flat belly that we seem to think we should have!
Now, fifty years later women have become famous for being the opposite. They want to look boyish, and they want to “choose” how to look. Fighting against what nature designed them to be. If they have big breasts, they want small ones, or if they have small breasts, they want big ones. They certainly do not want a rounded belly!
The Oxford Companion to the Body, which can be found on the internet, talks about the extremes that people go to, to change their body shape. Extreme dieting leads on to Eating disorders.
Plastic surgery is used to the ultimate degree, not only changing noses or face lifts, but tummy tucks, thigh tucks and so on. Millions of pounds and dollars are spent on trying to look good.
There is more and more discontent with the way we look. Some older celebrities look hideous as they attempt to hold back time.
Although much of this reading is directed towards women, men reading this can read between the lines and see where it can apply to them too. Men of course need to look at their belly, as that is where they generally store their fat. .
Many of us have lost the ability to accept our bodies and images for what they are. Society is obsessed with being thin. Lives are dominated by diets, what to eat and what not to eat.
Yet we are still in the midst of an Obesity Epidemic!
We have wandered far away from being natural humans. Our stores are full of junk food. Our bodies are unacceptable. We need to get back nearer to what nature provided for us. With both our body image and with what we eat!
We need to celebrate our bodies, not keep fighting them!
Which parts of your body would you change if you could?
Consider carefully whether you are being completely realistic?
Stand in front of the mirror and look at them one at a time and consider whether any of them could be changed in a natural way.
I have also decided to add in another factor for older women.
As our body grows older, there is no doubt that it will do everything it can to preserve itself.
The Primal need in our bodies will save and store as much fat as it can and as we get older and the body begins to break down, that will happen all the more.
Therefore, if you are over the age of about sixty, you may need to settle for a slightly higher weight than your mind is telling you to be.
So from that we can conclude that we have been led up the wrong path with NHS guidelines saying that we must be below 25 to be healthy.
The same can be said of our cholesterol levels. We do not need to constantly concerned about keep them low. But that is another matter, although it does give us some indication about how we have all been like sheep and led astray as far as our health is concerned.
So, while considering whether you really need to be constantly worried about losing fat, add this latest thought to your list.
In the light of more news coming out about the Cholesterol and Statin conundrum, let me tell you a story.
Seven years ago, I found out that I have what the NHS considers to be high Cholesterol. 11.5 I was put on statins, and very quickly began to have such bad side effects that I had to leave them off.
Then, the GP sent me to the Lipid Clinic. I felt humiliated and angry to start with when a young student interviewed me to find out my background. She said that I was over the safe limit on the BMI table, (27) and that I had better do something about it. She was supposed to be asking me about my lifestyle, but never asked whether I had been “Doing Something About It!”
I had been doing something about it all of my life, and was feeling great that I was still only 27 on the BMI table! So you can imagine my anger. But that is another story.
However, the Lipid Consultant gave me some other drugs than statins, which I took. When I went back four weeks later, my Cholesterol had gone down. So she then gave me an added drug. To this day I cannot understand why she did that if the other one was working anyway. In my ignorance, I began to take them.
By now I was beginning to do a lot of research of my own. And discovered that this drug had NOT BEEN ENTIRELY PROVED TO BE SAFE!
The rest of the story, in brief, was that I wrote to the consultant, discussed it with my GP, (who was very open-minded) and left all the drugs off.
I had read two books which I highly recommend to you, and which the consultant said that she would be putting in an official complaint about the authors because they were damaging peoples health! She was bringing my case up at the conference she was attending on Heart research, and she was writing to my GP with a disclaimer notice.
My GP laughed when I went to her next, and put my head around the door before my body, and asked if it was safe to come in, seeing as she had had this letter from said Consultant. But she said that she had already written back to the consultant saying that her patient (me) had obviously done a lot of research and that she was entitled to make up her own mind.
Since then, my readings have gone down to 7.5 which is about right for someone my age. Without any drugs, but eating a balanced diet and NOT LOW FAT.
So, before you carry on believing all that is said about having to keep your Cholesterol Levels down, far too low for many of us, read these books. I don’t claim to be an expert, but I know enough to realise that I am a lot better off letting my body do as it thinks best.
The books that I read were The Great Cholesterol Con, by Dr Malcom Kendrick, whom I have now met and he gave me a signed copy in honour of the way that I stood up to these medical bullies. His book is informative, easy reading and funny in a tongue in cheek fashion.
Many of you will know that I see myself as an expert on food issues and addictions to certain food.
I have written books about it and numerous blogs and even designed a workbook to help people. A lot of my work has been entitled around “What does food mean to you?”
I am an expert because I have been obsessed with food and weight issues for nearly fifty years. And that means that an awful lot of calories, pounds and food has passed my lips.
My bulimia has been anything from living on virtually nothing to eating an entire loaf of bread spread with butter and jam in an afternoon.
Seven years ago, I came across a diet that made sense to me. This way of eating helped me to break away from sugar and carbohydrate addiction, by controlling my intake of those foods.
But, it was all coming from the outside; in. Even though this diet made sense, and there was loads of support, conferences and a forum. As well as the books, recipes and menus, seven years later I have still fallen back occasionally to the old ways. I have still fallen back into the habit of being obsessed with my body weight.
In the last seven years too, I have been working on my personal and spiritual self. It has been quite a trip.
In fact, when I sometimes read the stuff that I have written, I wonder if it was me that wrote it. But at present, I seem to be in a phase where I am catching up with my own advice.
In the last two months, I have been reading, learning, studying and practising with a chap called Dr Joe Dispenza. He has written several books, but I started with one called “Breaking the Habit of Being You.”
He explains that no matter how hard we try if we don’t change our thinking and core beliefs about ourselves, we cannot change the ingrained habits of our way of thinking.
Changing our thinking has been talked about over the years, in connection with Spiritual development. We hear about the Law of Attraction, Quantum theory and the laws of the Universe.
Yet all of these will not work completely unless we are willing to meet them halfway. This can be with illness, lack, addictions, broken relationships, and so on.
JD has gone a step further and explained HOW we could change our thinking, by changing our brains.
When I started to read his books, I became aware of the large amount of headspace my food issues was filling up. I had often tried to change my thinking around several shifts that I have wanted to make in my life. But somehow there has been something lacking.
For me and countless others, Joe has hit the proverbial nail on the head.
If you want to know more, you would have to listen to him on YouTube or read his books. But basically, he works on using the brain, body and mind together, by meditation. Choosing what you want to change, you then do the meditation, and state your intention.
He explains in details why it works, and at his seminars and workshops, you can see the activity in the brain, on the EEG machines that he uses. It is all carried out scientifically and not just pseudoscience.
So, I began carrying out his instructions, and now, two months later I am finding that my attitude to food is changing dramatically.
For example, I am now eating a lot less and satisfied quicker. I am enjoying my food, and am not afraid of it anymore. When fear sets in I simply say the word “Change.” Doing this brings my awareness to what I am doing and why. I am no longer in the fridge or cupboard wondering what to eat between meals.
I am bringing foods into the house that I would not have before. Yes, there is still a way to go with that because there are still some foods that I fear will bring on a binge. But that will change with continual everyday meditation and choose to use the word change when I find myself in the food cupboard, and I am not hungry.
Most surprising is that I find that given a choice between eating what I know is good for me, and some other food that I have banned from my diet in the past, I am actually choosing the good food.
I surrendered my anxiety over what I eat because I was still in a kind of diet trap. I was still using the diet to control me, instead of allowing my body to say what it wants.
There are probably people who are thinking, “If I did that I would be totally out of control because the sugar would trigger me off.”
I was saying that too until I decided that I wanted to change enough to make a difference in my life. In the past, I would have been afraid to let go, because the addiction was controlling me.
But now I realise that I want to have dominion over my body. Which has not meant that I am dictating to it what it has, but because I am also respecting its needs, my body is responding with “Thank you for listening to me, I can now let you know what I want!”
And rewarding me for making me aware of the times when if I fancy something sweet, I can have it. Without the fear of losing control.
For many years I have been cooking separate meals for myself and my husband. I still do occasionally, because there are some things that he likes that I don’t.
But there have too many occasions when I have cooked separate meals, and simply do not want mine, and yet would fancy his. It dawned on me that perhaps I would be healthier if I had a little of what I have cooked for him rather than sitting down to something I don’t fancy. Why go on torturing myself, because I am afraid of food!
People with weight, self-image and food problems, have a complicated relationship with food. I have been telling myself all those years that I love food. But the constant input from various diets and slimming clubs has made me afraid of it.
We hear so much about what is good for you, or what is not so good. The media bring mixed messages to people, no wonder we get confused.
We all need to eat. We need to eat nourishing foods and enjoy them. Above all, we need “Soul Food!”
That means that we need to nourish our mind, body and soul. Eating out with friends is a good example of that. Are you eating out with them because of the food, or because of their company?
When I have been not eating particular foods in the past, I have felt almost cast aside. Now I can just eat a little of what the others eat and just be seen as having a small appetite.
Are you eating something that has been slung together for the sake of satisfying your physical hunger? Or are you eating something that has been lovingly prepared?
Yes, there are times when we are in a hurry and may turn to some fast food. But that does not mean that it cannot be nourishing.
However, I digress. The point is that I have realised a wonderful change in my attitude to food and my body since I began the meditations with Joe. It is not Joe that is making the difference, but my intention of making the change. He simply gave me the tools.
I am making good use of those tools, I know that I have a way to go, fifty years of dieting and not eating certain foods, will not be changed overnight. But the important thing is that I am now aware of what the problem has been.
If you are stuck in any area of your life and want to change it, whether that is lack, addiction, or an illness, take a look at Joe Dispenza. I am aware that he is not the only person teaching quantum, but his teachings have hit the spot for me.
Joe Dispenza has written, “Evolve the Brain.” “Breaking the Habit of Being You.” “The Placebo Effect”.
Recently he wrote “Becoming Supernatural”, and he is touring the world presenting a workshop on it. I am looking forward to attending his London workshop on April 14th. 2018.
I was diagnosed with the early signs of Age-related Macular Degeneration four years ago. At a regular eye test, the Optician told me that I had something called Drusen, which appeared as little white fatty spots on the picture of the back of my eye. He advised me that I should take supplements which he recommended and so I did that.
Being of a tenacious nature and having an enquiring mind, I began to do my own research about this condition and also found out what support was available.
The news was not good because AMD is apparently un-reversible and steadily gets worse. It is genetic and often caused by smoking. The advice was also to eat plenty of greens stuff, and the jury was out on supplements.
Two years down the line after having new prescription lenses and finding that they did not help my vision, I went to the University in Plymouth, where I had volunteered to be a guinea pig for students, and they found a layer of Wet behind the macula. I was sent straight away to the Eye Infirmary, where they said that it was not yet bad enough for treatment (injections in the eye) but that they would monitor it and start injections when it deteriorated to a crucial stage.
Meanwhile, I was experiencing a great deal of stress in my life, which I will not go into here.
On the positive side, the wet was not getting any worse. I was also watching what I eat, and kept mostly to a natural diet, not eating much of the refined and processed products that pretend to be food these days.
Then, in October last year, the source of the stress left my life. In December I went to the Eye Infirmary who told me that they would not need to see me for another three months as opposed to the usual four weeks, because there was still no change, and they would be discharging me on my next visit if there wasn’t any further change. (I found out from the University that it meant that the wet MD was not getting worse.)
On my last visit to the University two weeks ago, they did a scan, and found that the wet had disappeared! Apparently, the effects that stress can have on Wet AMD is not very well researched or recognised. But the tutor said that she would be telling researchers about my case.
To sum up then; my vision is a lot better. The wet has disappeared. The progression is not as much as was first feared. None of this is my imagination because it is there on the scans. I am now using the distance vision glasses again and managing a lot better.
I claim that the reasons are; because I eat a healthy diet; I do not take expensive synthetic supplements anymore; The enormous stress has disappeared from my life; And I practice Spiritual (not religious) development.
It is a talk by a Chris Knobbe.MD. And just about sums up what my own experience with MD is except for the stress factor.
He has been studying the effect on AMD from our appalling modern diet. He gives correlation studies on this.
I could tell you what he says, but the best way for you to find out is to watch the video. It is quite literally an eye-opener.
He does not claim that we can all repair our eyes, but what he looks at is how we can prevent it and reverse it in the early stages with a natural ancient way of eating.
The four main culprits that are very significant in our modern diets, starting from the early sixties are; White flour, Vegetable oils, trans fats, and sugar.
If you think about it, those are the ingredients in our modern day diet of mainly processed foods.
In the USA the food intake percentages are; Plant foods, 12%: Animal Foods 25% and Processed foods 63%.
He shows the correlation between the increase in these processed foods and MD, from very few cases in the 1920’s to the present day prevalence of it.
He gives a list of diseases that are increasing in the countries that have these monster foods, among these diseases are; diabetes, heart disease, stroke, cancer, Alzheimer’s, Obesity and autoimmune diseases. All are amounting to something called metabolic syndrome. Now, with his lengthy research and correlated findings he wants to see MD added to that list.
Because of my own experience, I believe him. I left off the supplements last September and increased my daily intake of green foods. I eat a good diet, and I am aware of my emotional and mental conditions too.
In case you are wondering about my diet, I will say that before seven years ago, I was consuming a lot of the four foods he mentions. White flour, sugar, vegetable oils and trans fats, loomed large in my way of eating. I was a victim of the slimming diet industry, and yes; diet foods contain these ingredients. I dieted on and off for over forty years until I discovered how to eat for my health.
Which reminds me; a lot of Baby Boomers are the ones who were told to eat low-fat foods. That advice happened in the late 1970’s when we were all foxed into becoming low fat eaters. The food industry jumped on the wagon, and it has become conventional to avoid fat.
For the last seven years, I have mostly kept to a natural diet. I eat very small amounts of sugar or even sweeteners. I base my intake on plenty of plant foods and vegetables, one piece of fruit a day, natural yoghurt, (not low fat) animal products, eggs and some amount of natural fats such as butter, olive oil and coconut oil, nuts and seeds. I eat very little in the way of bread but have quinoa and a small amount of rice or oats.
These foods have become my normal way of eating.
Please have a look at the video, before you make any comments or judgements. I do not claim to know it all, but Chris Knobbe.MD, and Dr Harcombe and a good many other researchers and authors certainly know enough for the authorities and many medical professionals to sit up and start to take notice.
If you want to read any further about a healthy and natural way of eating, and why, the following list of authors have written extensively about the subject. Just google them!
Dr Zoe Harcombe; Robert Lustig; Gary Taubes; Dr Verner Wheelock; and much more about the damage that sugar and our faulty way of eating in the 21st century.
Have you noticed this word is becoming more common every day?
“Don’t you patronise me!”
“I feel patronised.”
Are just two of the most common.
But what is the real meaning of the word and where are we taking it out of context?
Over the last few decades, even the dictionary has changed its mind.
In the Oxford Dictionary from 1980 the definition is;
pa’tronize. v.t. 1. Act as a patron towards, support, encourage. 2. Treat (person, thing,) as if with consciousness of one’s superiority.
But in 1996 from the Oxford dictionary it became;
patronize v.tr. (also –ise) 1. Treat condescendingly. 2. Act as a patron towards. 3. Frequent (a shop etc.) as a customer.
For me, the first definition makes sense for the real meaning of the word.
Let me illustrate with a story.
Someone I know who runs a business mostly online had a customer who complained about a product that he sells continuously and is an expert in that product.
When he went to great lengths to explain the nature of the product and why something had developed, which to the customer appeared as a fault, she accused him of patronising her.
But he was simply carrying out his side of her patronising his business. He was superior in his knowledge of the product.
But, we have now developed the habit of using the second definition. Many times when people mean well, such as giving up their seat on the bus, or helping someone in some way, many of us decline that help because we see it as being treated condescendingly.
If being patronised then; is someone giving up their seat for me, or helping me on with my coat, or asking if I am ok, I don’t mind being patronised.
Perhaps we all need to ask ourselves in what context we are using the word. The next time we feel “patronised,” are we feeling condescended to? If someone gives up their seat for you, are they coming from a position of superiority? Or kindness?
The world is becoming a place where many people seem to be on the defensive. You may say this is because Planet Earth is becoming a very dangerous place to be. Maybe true or it may not be more dangerous than it ever was. But we do seem to be feeling that we are living on the edge of a precipice.
But how about being the change you want to see and start with making a change in your corner of the world? There are all sorts of things we can change and to be aware of some of them is a start.
Perhaps the original use of this word in our vocabulary will be the first step. Because once we are aware of peoples true motives and don’t immediately go down the road of being or feeling “Patronised” we can help to spread a little kindness. In turn that will lead to us all to not being afraid of showing kindness, for fear of being accused of patronising the other person.
Have you noticed that on any forms you fill out, they have a box for 20-30; 30-40; 40-50; 50-65 (or similar)
When it comes to age 65, we are counted as +
What does that mean to you?
What it means to me is that society, in general, dismisses the over 65’s as a number when everything becomes indefinite.
Over 65’s, in general, have become indefinite, written off, uncertain about the future, invisible.
But I am working on making certain that any of that will not apply to me.
Over 65 is an important passage in life, and in these modern days, we could still live another thirty or more years. That is a lot of years to dismiss eh?
What about you?
Is it time to change all that?
After all, if the Government want us to work until we are 70 or even more, why put 65+ on forms, some of which are important to our welfare, such as insurance.
What can you do as an individual? Could you be a spark to the fire that helps to change that thinking?
We will show them that there is no such thing as 65+
We are still an important number.
Many people in my circle are still coming up with visions and new enterprises for the future at age 65 +!
There are some Facebook groups that you could join, to help start the ball rolling. Ageing with Vitality and The Silver Tent are just two of them. There is also one called Humorous Ageing if laughing about it takes your fancy. Here are the links.
The blossoms are the essential part of the progession to the fruit; and the fruit is just as vital.
Have you noticed when you are filling in a form, they put the age brackets into such an order that when you reach 65, it just becomes 65+?
Society spends a lot of time, worrying, fretting and resisting the very idea of ageing.
But as we evolve as humans in the 21st Century, isn’t it time for us to embrace the idea? Especially as many of us are living for another thirty to forty years after retirement.
We still matter! Because as long as we have breath, we are still vital.
Illness and disease can occur at any age, so why do we think that old age has the monopoly on it?
Yes; our bodies do wear out and become weaker and frailer, and the chances of succumbing to degenerative disorders are stronger.
But being Vital in our older years is still as much a part of life as when we are younger. There are many younger people who don’t realise how vital they are to society, so why do we insist on giving old age the honour?
The word vitality is being used too loosely these days. It is used to promote products, and ironically anti-ageing foods and creams. Consequently, we think of vitality as something that is easily lost and associates that loss with ageing.
Some of the synonyms for the word vitality are; Liveliness, energy, animation, spirit, passion, sparkle and vibrancy; the power giving continuance of life, present in all living things; Vital force or energy.
If you study those words and bear in mind that we are all made up of Mind, body and spirit, you may realise that you can retain them.
Liveliness can remain in the mind and spirit, along with vibrancy and passion.
Every one of us, from birth to death, have something to contribute to the world. No matter where you are, where you live, the state of your mind or health, the state of your finances, whatever your intellect or culture you have a VITAL role to play. At any age.
You may not ever become rich, a writer, an artist, a teacher, a celebrity or earn lots of money. You may even be thinking at this moment that you are not successful because you haven’t reached a goal that you had in mind. You may have just been diagnosed with an illness or condition that you perceive as a road to failure.
You may even be thinking that you are already a failure, let alone when you get older.
You may have just retired or are coming up to retirement, and you see the future as bleak and that you will no longer be a vital part of society.
On the other hand, you may be looking forward to a bit of peace.
Do you have the thought at the back of your mind that it is downhill all the way after the age of 65? Do you think that you must do the things on your bucket list before it’s too late?
Too late for what? Perhaps too late to be able to travel freely, too late for certain activities, yes. But have you thought about what else it may be too late for? Are you seeing the time to come, the “too late” as a time when you are sitting like the proverbial cabbage?
The truth is that; As long as you have breath, you are still vital!
But how can I remain vital when I am too weak or helpless to do anything?
All of us have energy running through us as long as we are alive.
Most of the time we are unaware of it and only when we are active in some way, we become aware. But it is there; how else would your heart keep beating, your eyes seeing and all the other organs in your body stay working?
Collective energy is what you feel in a crowd at a football stadium or when the whole world stood still when we were witnessing 9/11.
We are part of the Universal energy, and what is more, it is Vital to every one of us, it is what keeps us alive. You are part of that collective energy.
Even people in a coma, or under anaesthetic have an energy running throughout their body. And they are still vital to the planet and in turn to society.
And even the person in a state of weakness, infirmity and very old age, have that energy and vitality.
People become “old” at any age. The physical process starts at age 27. But in many peoples minds, they begin to feel old as soon as they see the first grey hair.
We put people into categories or brackets. We have expectations of what we can do at any given age. We use the expression “I’m too old for that.”
The perception is different in all of us. Some may still be playing football or running at age ninety; others may need to stop being physically active at a much earlier age due to injury.
When we run upstairs and forget what we came up there for, we fear that it’s the ageing process setting in. Forgetting that most of us at any age do that. What about the schoolchild forgetting his sports kit, or losing his jacket? Do we ask if he or she is getting old?
We think of the darkest fear that we have with the process of old age as a line of events.
We retire; we travel or join things; take up mew hobbies.
Next; we expect we will start to suffer from disease which disables us from doing all the things that we like to do.
We then expect that it’s downhill all the way to becoming useless, a burden on society, and want just to die.
But guess what? That vital energy is still there.
Remember that the Universe does not centre around you, but that You are simply a vital part of it.
So as you become weaker and frailer, you can have either a positive effect on others or a negative.
Prepare for your older years with the thought in mind that you are vital to those around you at this time, and you are on the road to FEELING vital until the day you die.
Another synonym for vitality is spark or sparkle. Are you going to be the spark that lights people’s fire, even when you simply smile at people around you?
Don’t tell me that you can’t do that when you are old and frail. I know many who do.
Having the spark that lights people’s fire starts at any age. Think of the effect that even the youngest baby has when they smile for the first time.
Are your family and friends going to be drawn to see you? You can do this by staying energised while you can by listening, learning, reading, writing and creating new things.
If your niche is gardening or craft do it, while you can.
Stay informed, be active, eat well.
Research drugs before you take them. You do not have to just go along with what the doctor says and jump on the roundabout of taking one drug after another that dulls your brain and mind.
Make younger friends, don’t just join the local senior citizens club and talk about the weather or your latest illness.
You have a lot to offer younger people coming along. Only three days ago, I was lunching in the centre of London with a young student from Singapore. How did I get there? I was at a Seminar on making choices with people of all ages.
The turning point for me was when at the age of sixty, a friend of the same age commented that she hated this business of getting old.
I thought “I’m outta here!” No way was I going to join that bandwagon.
Yes, I am ageing, yes time is running away with me, but I changed my thinking to one of “My older years are going to be a time of learning, wisdom and supporting others to do the same.”
Necessary for the success or continued existence of something; extremely important.
The Cambridge definition of the word “redundant” is;
Unnecessary because it is more than is needed.
Which category do you think you fit into?
I am determined that I fit into the vital one. I have decided that right up until the day when I die, I will not become redundant.
Because I know that what you think is what you get, I know that this will happen. I want to be vital to my family, friends and all those that I come into contact with.
You may be thinking that this is a huge claim to make. None of us knows what is going to happen to us from day to day. We may think we have a fair idea, and we make plans, but often those plans don’t come to fruition.
But being vital is all about what we make of those times when things go wrong. It is what we see in them and what we make of them.
Yesterday we took my 94-year-old Mother to an outpatient’s appointment at the hospital. She is very frail, so we needed to hire the use of a special taxi to take her in a wheelchair. When we were coming back, the taxi driver fell off the ramp leading into the taxi, and the wheelchair and Mum fell sideways off the ramp and landed on top of the taxi driver.
At first, we thought that everyone had been injured, and that could well have been the case. But as we were in the hospital car park, there were medics on the scene very quickly.
No one sustained any injuries; I was glad to be able to leave it to the experts and just observe what was happening.
The outcome was good, and even though my mother can be difficult at times, it is her plucky spirit that keeps her going. I saw a different side of her, the grim determination to be vital, kept her from being kept in hospital overnight.
When she saw my brother later in the evening, she joked that she was all shook up like Elvis.
Yes, the thing could have turned out to be more serious, and we might all have been thinking differently this morning. I am not going to go into the idea that someone was taking care of her because often that can seem too high-minded to many people. But the thing is that it all turned out to be well.
The taxi company gave us a free ride home, the wait in Casualty was only an hour, my Mum saw the funny side of it and is feeling grateful that things were ok. The taxi driver was unhurt and so was Mum.
There were so many good things that came out of the incident. There was the sense of caring and expertise from the staff on the scene, and I was able to relax and surrender my Mums care to them.
The fact that I can see the funny side of it, the fact that I can see the good that came out of it and the fact that all was well; is being vital.
If I were feeling redundant at my age now, I would probably have just seen how awful it all was. I could have felt redundant when I had to leave the matter to the experts. I could be thinking that the taxi driver was an idiot. I could be cursing the fact that the dogs had peed on the carpet when we eventually got home!
But my strongest feeling this morning is one of gratefulness and knowing that we are all vital, as long as we are alive.
No person needs to feel redundant. Even those elderly people suffering from dementia, are vital. Those who are very ill and dying, at any age are vital.
Even that person who “Gets on your Wick” has a place in the world.
So are you vital or redundant?
I know that I am vital, and that’s why I am Ageing with Vitality.
Just an after-thought here. My definition of being vital does not mean that we have to have the body or energy of a forty-year-old! That may be possible for some, but please don’t run away with the idea that if you are feeling less energetic than you were in your forties, that does not prevent you from being vital!
Please follow and like us: