Okay, please don’t abandon ship before I have a chance to explain! First off, I’m not some PETA, hemp wearing activist, but I want to make some points I’ve learned from my own experience over the past few months. Before the recent past, I thought organic was a word for overpriced, and that vegetarians were hippies who just smoke dope, and don’t want to cook. All very narrow indeed, and I’m really just teasing…a little. A friend of mine however, made an impassioned plea for me to at least consider my food sources and how they are not only treating the animals, but the farmers, and the community at large.
In an effort to appease said friend, and to broaden my horizons, I watched two key documentaries on Amazon called, “Food Inc.“, and “Forks Over Knives“. Food Inc. is a very honest view of the industrialized food machine that feeds our country, and Forks Over Knives is the absolute science behind why we should be eating vegetarian. It took this combination to convince me of two things:
1. Organic, local food is better than your typical grocery store food for many reasons, and it’s worth the money.
2. Eating vegetarian is not a political statement as much as it is smart for our bodies (President Clinton’s recent heart scare and conversion to vegetarian eating partially convinced me too).
Bear with me on this kind of odd, but makes sense theory I came up with. We consume animals and plants for energy. The energy that comes from these animals could be positive or negative. Think of how these animals live in their short lives (if they are raised on industrial farms), and the negative energy stored in their bodies when they are taken for our nutrition. We eat that negative energy, add it to our own stress hormones/negative energy, and it’s no wonder we are suffering from cancer, and any number of diseases. Not to mention, once you know where your food comes from, it is very hard for you to look down at that piece of chicken, and not think about those poor animals who cannot stand because they’ve been genetically engineered to tip over from a huge breast.
Happy Animals = Healthy People
You may ask, then what is the solution? Even “organic” meats you buy have very dubious requirements (i.e. free range according to organic standards is 3 square feet…not much range). However, you can research local farms, which are dedicated to operating to higher standards. Such farms as those run by Joel Salatin, of Polyface Farms who is featured in Food Inc. are important leaders in teaching consumers how to eat local, and eat smarter. Read their story, their principles, and then go find a local farm near you who is dedicated to raising happier animals for your table. The best site recommended by Joel would be Eat Wild. Here you can learn more about the value of traditional farming techniques, and find a local farm near you to purchase higher quality, organic meats, vegetables, and dairy items.
Beyond Your Weekend Farmer’s Market
You may still be scratching your head, wondering how all this will help you ease stress. Well, besides my theory of us consuming massive quantities of negative energy via our food sources, there is also the fact that we are consuming hormones, pesticides, genetically modified crops, and antibiotics, which ultimately make it harder for our own immune system to function. Hippocrates, who was the founder of medical science, ironically said this:
“Let food be thy medicine.” and “Natural forces within us are the true healers of disease.”
We have control over both of these…the food we consume, and the natural forces operating within us. If you want to start living a less stressful existence, start by consuming less “stressful” food. Functional medicine is the new frontier, and doctors like Dr. Mark Hyman, who are leading the charge against diseases like diabetes need to know how nutrition fundamentally heals people, not drugs. If these are ideas that interest you, I encourage you to read more, watch the films, and try some organic products. You will soon find, as I have, that by simply substituting a few meat based meals with vegetarian meals, and following the rules of eating produce in season, and local/organic foods, you can not only lose weight, but ease stress, and know you are no longer part of a destructive industry bent on feeding us a load of…well…manure 😉
Resources to get you started:
Find Farm Buying Clubs at: Directory of Farmers one EatWild.com