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Reaping What You Sow - Nutrition For Sustained Strength And Energy

September 18, 2016 5 min read

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Reaping What You Sow - Nutrition For Sustained Strength And Energy

As a massage therapist, physical strength and a certain amount of stamina can be required on a daily basis. One aspect that is taken into consideration less – perhaps through lack of awareness – is the effect your diet is having on your performance. Having worked in nutrition for many years and experimented extensively using my own body, I feel confident in saying that we really are what we eat. I also know from personal experience that what we eat affects us profoundly at such a deep level that we could attribute almost all of our issues – both physical and many of the psychological - to poor diet, and/or toxicity. We associate malnutrition with starvation, but malnutrition is a reality for many on a typical Western diet. There is a lot of debate over what constitutes a healthy diet, and for those that don’t know true vitality, all they have to go on is that they don’t feel bad. However, not feeling bad is certainly not an indication of great health.

Personally, I eat many raw foods. I realise that this choice is not for everyone, but I have been both vegan (on and off) and vegetarian since around 2011. Through experimentation, my diet has become both unusual and interesting over the years. I was unaware that there were so many delicious options available to the vegetarian with a bit of creativity and curiosity in their makeup. Things I either had never heard of or would never have dreamed of eating are now staple diet for me. I am not writing this to convince anyone to change over to any particular diet, to condemn anyone’s dietary choices or warn against food types. But it has to be said that there are food options and protocols in existence that I can only label as transformational. I do know that the conventional British diet of convenience foods, carbs, sugar and too much red meat is what caused me terrible problems for many years. Those things created high acidity in my body, a problem all too many of us have in the West. It led to a debilitating and persistent condition called Candidiasis, which adversely affected my work, depleted my energy levels and impaired my cognitive functions, mood and concentration. Not really a welcome state for most holistic therapists, I’m sure you would agree. While we are supposed to be around 70% alkaline and 30% acidic, for example, it is mainly the other way around. This is the fundamental issue for most with ill health, but fortunately there are many great ways you can change it. Believe it or not, it isn’t normal to have a cold, or a even a headache. We just accept it as so because it’s so common. All these things are your body’s way of telling you there is a problem – be it low immunity, infection or just poor lifestyle choices.

Awareness is key

So here is where awareness really pays. Not everyone realises that the soil our foods are grown in is so lacking in minerals and nutrients due to modern agricultural practices. On top of this, GM foods – in some places - are creeping in unlabeled and we thoughtlessly purchase food that has traveled across continents and has barely any vitamins left in it by the time it reaches us. It is always better to stick with locally grown, preferably organic and seasonal produce to get the best benefit. Then there is the pesticide issue – a nasty problem for us, but we don’t always give a lot of thought to it. Although it’s a sorry state of affairs that these are the most commonly available foods in supermarkets, when we buy the cheap ‘non-organic’ vegetables, we are inadvertently poisoning our bloodstream. There are measures you can take to combat this; for example, you can ozonate your food with an ozonator machine, wash it in bentonite clay, or even lemon juice. You can even buy a ready-made 'veggie wash'. But it is much more sensible in this day and age to fork out the extra cash to give your body that risk-free, extra nutritional boost. Besides, when it comes to the taste, there is no comparison. The meat is almost certainly going to have been injected with growth hormone, water, antibiotics and has probably led a very unpleasant life before it reached your plate, so even on an energetic level, it might pay to consider what you are consuming. Organic, free range is the only way if you are going to eat meat – everything else is going to deplete and drain you.

Fresh, raw foods and superfoods and a minimal intake of supplements, along with pure water are the best way to great health. Tap water is disturbingly toxic, full of heavy metals, bacteria and added chemicals which drain your cells of what they need, paving the way for disease to set in. There is so much information out there on what you should eat that it's migraine inducing trying to decide what to believe. There is no way around it but to test the water and see how you feel. Consistent consumption of additive laden convenience food, sugars and heavy meats builds up in the gut; the body can't break it all down properly or quickly enough so you end up with an overworked liver being attacked by the excess toxins that it hasn't been able to process, plus a layer of intestinal plaque which blocks absorption of nutrients, and in turn this compromises your immune system. Raw foods are still complete with enzymes as they have not been destroyed in cooking. Most people find that a raw food diet (or at least two thirds of the diet as raw) assists their liver function and absorption, and you won't get the nasty bloating and heaviness from undigested fermenting foods sticking around. Assisting your liver with the right foods and cleansing protocols is paramount. Only then will your supplements, vitamins and minerals will start to work more efficiently instead of adding to your liver's workload.

 

 

Make or break your day

As a massage therapist, the right nutrition can make or break your day, every single day. Many of us are healers, whether we realise it or not, but it’s a lot harder to heal someone else – if not impossible – when you are not in good shape yourself. For example, A Reiki healer should be energetically sound before they can process the energy of another, and there are many sick healers out there who may well be so because their immune systems were not strong enough to manage the negative energy outputs of other people. I once did a Reiki treatment on someone and feinted twice, because I wasn’t physically in the right place for it. We should be assessing our bodies with the same attitude as an athlete would have. Our work is physically and energetically demanding, so our input should at least equal our output.

We would like to hear your opinions and stories, if you have any. Do you notice a difference in your work performance when your diet changes? Can you notice a marked improvement when putting in healthy foods? Does your mood, and therefore your day, improve when you make this effort? What protocols do you follow in order to keep your strength up on a long working day?


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