|Better Living For Beginners|
Something very exciting has been happening recently. Well in fact, exciting things have been happening all year.
My sister had a baby and so brought the first of the next generation to my immediate family. I get all the fun of new baby loveliness with none of the responsibilities or mess. I look forward to being the corrupting influence in her life for many years to come. My mind races with bad habits I can teach her to torment her parents.
I moved house. Again. I'm forever moving house. But this time it's just me and my wonderful manfriend making our home together which feels like something quite special.
And as usual I'm continuing my never ending experimentation through the gastronomic delights of Dublin and beyond, of which, thanks to the passing (finally) of the recession in Ireland, there are many.
|my new home|
Over the last couple of years I've been battling with a whole host of diets and diversions trying to get to the bottom of what had me feeling so generally crap in my insides all the time. All the endless headaches, muscle aches, sore throats and sore stomachs were getting on top of me and I explored everything from elimination diets to candida diets to eating whatever the hell I wanted diets. I've tried it all. Before my sister had her beautiful baby she was playing around with finding a more healthy way of eating which was obviously, after all of the above, of great interest to me. She was generally trying to eat less meat, toying with vegan food, finding ways to get a handle on a healthier more sustainable way of eating to boost her energy levels both body and mind. Through her various researching and experimenting she has come to adopt a healthy plant based, wholefood and most importantly non judgy approach to food. I've been experimenting along with her and have found a huge difference in my daily well-being when I am following this way of eating. What's so wonderful about it is it's not limiting or restrictive at all. It fully accepts that someday your body might want a steak, and you know, maybe you should listen to it and go ahead and have a steak. But if you spend the majority of your time eating plant based wholefoods, a treat here and there isn't going to do you any harm at all. And the more you eat this way the less likely you are to crave the things that were possibly doing you harm in the first place.
So it was with all this in mind that last January I, along with three other guinea pigs, embarked on a 21 day vegan cleanse at the instruction of my oh so organised and clever sister. She had entire packs done out for us which we each received as christmas gifts outlining what to eat, how to cook it, what food we needed to buy and where to get said food. Essentially everything we needed to know so there were no excuses for not following through. After a rough first week of detoxing (no caffeine, no sugar, no booze - after the christmas excess you can imagine there was a lot to detox) we all started to feel wonderfully, miraculously brilliant. Included in our guides were tips on meditation, free writing, positive thinking and exercise to boost our minds and muscles along with our insides. I could write another entire post about how wonderful this was and maybe I will but suffice to say I was sold.
One of the best things I took away from the cleanse was that making small changes makes big differences and while I'm in no way a vegan, never mind even slightly a vegetarian, I have adopted a new way of eating that involves far less meat, dairy, refined carbohydrates and processed foods, much more veg both raw and cooked, non fake vegan alternatives to cut down dairy and a generally more discerning attitude to what I put in my body. Admittedly the cutting down of meat has been helped hugely by the fact that there's no freezer in our new kitchen, so that old habit of stocking up on meat for the freezer in the supermarket is not an option any more. But that aside, I'm much more aware of when I want meat and why that might be and make better choices now about where to get it.
While I still often feel pretty terrible I'm getting much better at pinpointing what is making me feel that way and can now make choices based on that. Example. 'Is this bag of Doritos and dip going to make me wheezy and make cranky. Yes, yes it is, but it's delicious and I've nothing to do tonight but lie on the couch and watch a movie so bring it on.' You get the idea.
|my wonderful sister Daire|
If you want to know more about how to feel that little bit better everyday and find out the small things you can do to start making those big changes you can check our Better Living For Beginners where Daire will explain it all much better than I ever could.