This article was originally published for Freed Marcroft, an award-winning law firm in Hartford, Connecticut, as part of a series they posted to support their clients in taking care of themselves while going through a divorce.
Yoga, combined with meditation and spending time outside in nature are foundational credos that I too teach my clients. These practices are grounding. These practices will bring you back to your most powerful self, especially during stressful times.
Both practices set a mighty stage for you to choose healthy for you and your family.
But, they are just one aspect of wellbeing. Proper nutrition is essential for you to maintain healthy balance.
So how can you take all the lessons you learn in meditation and yoga off the mat and onto your plate?
I offer you three nutrition-based ways to do just that, to take your lessons from the mat to your overall healthy lifestyle goals.
Just breathe = Just prepare
Like your breath is important in your meditation or yoga practice, preparation is important in your stay-healthy game. Preparation will ensure you eat healthy and nutritious foods no matter what the day brings.
I recommend choosing two days a week (like Sunday and Wednesday nights) to prep healthy foods, to have fresh, delicious options easily at hand. Here’s a few of my favorites ideas:
- Wash greens and store in salad spinner, or an aerated plastic bag.
- Wash, slice, chop and cut veggies and store in sealed glass bowls.
- Wash berries and store in a colander,m which will prevent spoilage.
- Pre-package smoothie and juice ingredients the night before, so you’re ready in the morning to blend them up.
- Make a few dips, like guacamole or pumpkin seed pate. They will turn your veggie snacks into a treat!
- Pack a green apple in your desk drawer at work, in your brief case or handbag, in your car. Vow to eat your green apple before you eat the junk food that is screaming your name, and I promise, you will be surprised how many times this one tip can save you!
- Always have a ripe avocado ready to go. Healthy fats satiate and can hold any stressful craving at bay
- Pack a paring knife in your car to cut your avocado, veggies or fruit when you’re on-the-go.
You are not your thoughts = Healthy is fun
This is one of the mightiest lessons meditation and yoga teach — you are not your thoughts. Like the thought, “the posture is hard to do, I’m just a novice,” it’s just your thoughts that the posture is hard that makes it hard for you to do.
Like the thought, “meditation is hard, I don’t like it, I can’t do it,” it’s just your thoughts that meditation is hard that makes it inaccessible to you.
Indeed, like the thought, “taking time to prepare healthy foods for the week ahead is hard, I don’t have enough time,” it’s just your thoughts that taking time to prepare healthy foods is hard that stops you from doing it.
Wayne Dyer said, “Change your thoughts, change your life.” If you nail this practice from yoga and meditation, and start recognizing them to shift your thoughts about eating healthy foods, you’ll accomplish your goals in half the time you ‘think’ it will take.
There is no wrong way to do things = The Wholly Trinity
One of yoga’s guiding credos teaches there is no wrong way to do things. My guiding credo to optimize your health and nutrition and reduce stress is what I call the Wholly Trinity. This is my playful, whole-foods spin on getting green in your body everyday in three ways through green juice, green smoothies and green salads.
Greens reduce inflammation and rejuvenate, remineralize and rebalance. Pound for pound, greens offer more nutrition than any other food so they are an excellent food to include in all the ways I recommend.
Green Juice is my top recommendation for clients to add into their diet. Green vegetable juice requires no digestive energy, so even if you are stressed green juice ensures optimal nutrition. Think an IV infusion of pure vitamin and mineral-water-rich, enzyme-active and phytonutrient laden fuel directed straight to your cells and tissues.
Green Smoothies are a whole-foods, fiber-rich, nutrient-dense ‘meal-in-a’glass’ and likely one of your best meal-on-the-go options. Green smoothies are akin to a salad in a glass, with endless ways to ‘beef up’ the nutrition you most want. They also retain all the fiber of it’s ingredients that satiate longer than juice.
One of my clients favorites is Instant Glow, a smoothie loaded with ingredients to bring your cells to life, and balance to your body, so you radiate health from the inside out! This recipe makes about 64 ounces — a full Vitamix pitcher full, so cut back if you want a smaller portion.
Green Salad: My third recommendation for the Wholly Trinity is a meal-sized Green Salad everyday. Include your favorite greens and/or wild lettuces, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and especially sprouts, avocados and olives. Here’s one of my favorites.
You can even make a salad of just simple greens, but do note that ingredients like sprouts peak in nutritional value, and avocados and olives will satiate you and satisfy you because of their healthy plant-based fats.
To dress your salad, I recommend two of my favorite, but ‘atypical’ mouth-watering delicious ‘dressings’ as new lighter fare recommendations — fresh marinara or fresh salsa. Both ‘dressings’ will transform your salad to a whole ‘next-level-healthy-salad-experience’ while keeping fat to a minimum (Healthy fats are essential, but layering an oil based dressing on top of olives and/or avocados is more than you need.)
If you follow my three tips for taking your meditation and yoga lessons “off the mat” and onto your plate, I promise you’ll find yourself not only in a healthier body with a healthier mindset as you learn to navigate your way through divorce, but also feel full of energy and confidence to create you newly!
Would you like more smoothie recipes to help you on your way? I've got you covered right here!