Let Food be Thy Medicine
Every so often in life something changes, drastically, overnight. The path you thought you were going down suddenly looks different. The map said go right, but now there are signs warning you to take the path to the left. Who you are, what is important to you, all made clear and yet unclear at the same time.
I won’t go into details here yet, but suffice it to say this last week ushered in one of these moments. With my focus on fitness lately, I was probably already headed in this direction, but the week brought in news that is forcing a change in how I approach food. Both for me and my family.
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine by thy food.”
The great pleasure I take in a bite of food has defined how I approach cooking. Bold flavors and greater focus on the experience of that moment than the effect that food may have on me later. This has been changing for me as I began tracking my meals and looking at my consumption as a way to fuel my next workout, working hard to gain strength at an age that most wouldn’t even think to start training. Last week, I even wrote that I was thinking of beginning to shift my writing more toward taking dishes I love and seeing how I can make them healthier. Then a health-related situation struck and it became clear that we would need to re-think why I may or may not select certain recipes for the week. In an instant, the nutrition factor of the foods I consume matter more than being exploratory with world cuisines.
I’m honestly not sure yet how all of this will impact my writing or how I approach food. One thing is for sure, healthy will not — cannot — mean ignoring flavor or the pleasure of great food. The prescription, a word I use intentionally, is 80% plant-based foods, nutrient-dense and high in fiber. Focus on eating the rainbow. Shift toward mostly lean meats to make sure I am hitting my muscle-building protein goals on top of the vegetable forward plate, seeking out more plant-based sources of protein as well. More to come over the next few weeks as I figure out what this space will be and I who I will be within it.
With that, I’ll leave you with one more quote.
"The first wealth is health."
— Ralph Waldo Emerson