My Journey into Health and Wellness Included an Early Interest in Diet, Nutrition and Fasting

Monday Morning Acu-Minute by Karen Johnson
Mindful Eating Begins with Asking Am I Hungry?
April 11, 2016
Monday Morning Acu-Minute by Karen Johnson
Mindful Eating Begins with Self-Reflection and Isolating the Components of Eating
April 25, 2016
Monday Morning Acu-Minute by Karen Johnson

Eating can seem like such a simple thing, so integral to life that we just kind of absorb it into our day. How we relate to eating, however, can be all but simple.

The journey into health and wellness that led me to becoming an acupuncturist started in my late teens. I developed an early interest in diet and nutrition. I started baking homemade bread, growing my own bean sprouts, exploring and practicing vegetarianism and working at the first local food co-op. I also read about and started fasting.

Fasting

People “fast” or intentionally limit food intake for various health, medical, religious or spiritual reasons. For my own combination of reasons, I decided that every Sunday I would fast from morning to evening. I drank plenty of water, but ate no food.

And I learned a great deal.

I was surprised at how much of my day was normally spent on food. Between thinking about eating, researching recipes, shopping, preparing, actually eating and then cleaning up…food related thoughts or activities consumed hours every day!

Fasting taught me to be less attached to any particular food. If I was craving something, I couldn’t get it because of my commitment to the fast, so I had to just wait it out. Once I realized I could wait it out, the craving would pass. I then realized I had control over my choices.

Fasting also gave me insight into internal and external pressures around food. I realized feelings inspire the desire to eat regardless of whether I was hungry, and habituated patterns, such as the common instruction to clear one’s plate, can cause overeating.

In the next few weeks, we will explore more about what I call, “food factors.” My intent is to inspire awareness of, and ultimately satisfaction with, the wonderful process of consciously, mindfully enjoying food!

Wishing you all the best,