Why Do You Eat The Things You Do?

For shits and giggles, I’m taking the Nutritional Science class at SMC to see what the California government is teaching the future of America about nutrition. Last week was my first class, and after raising a few points to the teacher I can already tell I know more than she does about plant-based nutrition. One thing that she did emphasis in her first lecture was the importance of eating plant-based foods. That made me very happy.

She is very into discussion and class participation. She asked the class “Why do you eat the things you do?”. Many answers were given: convenience, hunger, customs or religion, tradition (think Thanksgiving). I think many of the answers go back to our conditioning (see post a few days ago). We are conditioned from an early age to eat certain things, like animal foods for instance. We are told by our teachers, our parents, our government that we need meat for strong muscles and dairy for calcium and strong bones. As if! We have to break this conditioning in order to create optimal health for ourselves.

It got me thinking, why do I eat the things I do? After being vegan for 7 years I’ve devoted myself to eating things that nourish my mind, body, and spirit. I also eat things because I do not want to harm animals or the planet. I eat to share nourishment with my community, friends, and family. I eat so I can live out my true purpose in life and be the most true authentic person I can be. I eat to feel bliss (spiritual joy and extreme happiness)!

So I ask you, Why do you eat the things you do?

I had a great conversation with a friend who recently went vegetarian. He was telling me about a slip-up he had last week that left him feeling like crap physically and emotionally. I asked him why he fell off the wagon. He said he was really craving some soup and had 2 choices: this one Pho place that he used to eat at or another place down the street. I said to him, “You gave yourself 2 choices, when ultimately you had a endless number of choices that would have lead you to eating vegetarian.” Looking back, he realized that he made that choice out of convenience (i.e. laziness). He hadn’t clearly layed out the reasons for why he eats the things he does.

If we can all recondition ourselves and clearly state the reasons why we eat the things we do, we set an intention. That intention will stick with you when you are faced with important decisions about what to eat and how to nourish yourself. If your heart is committed to this intention than you are WAY more likely to stick with it and not let convenience, traditions, customs, or hunger take over.

As a side note, I’m all for parents raising their children vegetarian/vegan. The more parents we can get hip to plant-based diets the more likely we can stop the epidemic facing the future of our race. Keep an eye out for my next blog that will list my favorite resources to help you raise happy healthy veg kids!