In the west we obsess over food. From late night drive-thu’s to 24 hour breakfast diners, many people run their lives around what to eat and how to make it the greatest thing in the world. We have become pleasure junkies, slaves to the tongue, chasing the experience of the next meal without fully resting, digesting and integrating the whole experience of what food and nourishment really is.
It makes sense. We have become so disconnected to natures rhythms that we have forgotten we are nature. We as a culture are not only over scheduled, we are stressed out. All of which is leading people to reach for quick pleasures in the form of hyper tasty food. This is why the majority of our culture is over fed and under nourished.
But it is not all doom and gloom. There is a solution, and it comes back to understanding what works and doing more of that.
Everything is in rhythm, I can’t say that enough. This is important because when it finally clicked for me I understood why I had sluggish digestion, bloating, mental fog, low energy, poor sleep, dry skin along with other symptoms. I finally understood what was causing them while simultaneously seeing the path to alleviate them. So what did I do? Drum roll………
I began to not eat so often. I started experimenting with meal spacing which led me to explore fasting. Why did I do this? Back to that thing about rhythm. As a living human you need to sleep to balance activity, the exhale to balance the inhale, movement to balance the stillness, and digestion, the thing that happens between meals, to balance consumption.
Digestion happens within the many layers of the body. When it is sluggish, life becomes sluggish. Have you ever experienced slow digestion? It is not comfortable. Enhancing your digestion happens when a few things begin to fall into place. These things are outlined in the following bullet points.
- Eating dinner earlier in the evening
- Allowing time between meals for the body to digest properly
It sounds tricky but I think you will get it over time. Maybe you are already on this path and you have this concept nailed. I didn’t have this one down for the longest time. I was snacking all day on things that were doing nothing but making it worse.
My previous life
Trained as a chef, I was conditioned by my work environment to eat dinner after service, late in the evening while washing it down with a few adult beverages. Again, another contributor to the malfunctioning of my gut, low energy, and lack of mental clarity. Dinner happened on an early night around 9pm and sometimes well after 10:30pm. When I combined this late heavy dinner with tasting every ingredient for quality control and then mindless snacking on extra food all day… definitely not a recipe for optimized digestion. With my Ayurvedic perspective now, YIKES!!!
Over time I have been shifting my dinner time to earlier in the evening. I began this with the understanding of what I was studying with Ayurveda. What I noticed was it helped me greatly. This is now backed up with the recent findings in the field of circadian medicine. Researchers are finding that the time of day you eat is more important than how much you eat. I don’t believe they are suggesting to gorge beyond need, however they are finding that timing is critical for maintaining optimal weight, overall health and hormonal balance within the body.
Now I explore the effects of my actions. I understand when I eat my last meal has a direct influence on my level of energy I wake up with the next day.
Of course it is not ideal every day of the year and that is fine. Most of the time I am honoring this earlier dinner which is supporting my physiology to become more resilient and better able to adapt. When I have a good rhythm with eating my supper earlier I have more stable energy. This rhythm has allowed me to play with fasting, which dare i say, is next level for taking control of your relationship with food. Overall this process has led me to become more adaptable, a physiological skill that is oh so valuable in navigating the inconsistent availability of quality food.
Are you interested in learning how to shift your habits around dinner? This is the first step we take when exploring the art of connection. Do you want to shift your routines to better support your journey into deeper states of health, optimal body weight or better digestion? Connect with me here for a complimentary wellness strategy session.