I know it’s been a while since my last post. My apologies! I have two excuses, and they are just that, excuses. The first excuse is that my spouse and I are in the middle of moving back to Chicago from Puerto Rico. There is a great deal still left to do but I am certain when I write again I will be doing so from the Windy City.
The second reason I’ve not communicated in a while is that I’ve actually been in the Chicago area getting our place in order so we can move back. But more importantly, I was able to conduct my first Healthy Basics cooking class series at a congregation just outside of Chicago. It was a wonderful experience and getting that first series of classes under my belt was a huge boost to my confidence. It was definitely a challenge to conduct a cooking class with only one arm but I also now know it is entirely doable.
Here is a picture of the lovely participants:
In the class I shared the idea of Hara Hachi Bu. Have you heard of this?
As some of you may remember from other posts, I’m completely enamored with the concept pf Blue Zones. Blue Zones are those places in the world where the inhabitants have a greater proportion of people living to be 100 years old.
There have been five regions identified as Blue Zones but the most famous of these is Okinawa, Japan. They have a saying in Okinawa, born out of Confucianism, that is roughly translated into English as “Eat until you are eight parts (80%) full.”
Hara Hachi Bu…
This ancient wisdom reminds us of the physiology we are familiar with today. You probably already know this but the indicators which tell us we are full from eating are not immediately received by our brain. There is actually a delay of time between the stretching of our stomach walls that occurs when we eat until those signals suggest to our brain that we are full and should stop eating. We are, very likely in most cases, eating more than we should because we continue to eat during this signal delay.
The Okinawans must have figured this out ages ago by eating until they are 80% full. While they still easily get their nutritional needs met, they stop eating before the “full” messages reach the brain. This makes overeating much more difficult. Ingenious!
This is also, I believe, the reason we should eat more slowly. If we eat more slowly, and the stomach stretching begins, there is an opportunity for this signal of fullness to reach our brain prior to overeating. I’ll be the first to admit I have difficulties eating slowly (mindfully) but I think there is good reason to do so.
Well anyway, I was nervous about teaching the classes but am very glad I did. I think sharing the ideas of healthy eating will be something I’ll enjoy even more as my experience grows.
I’d love it if you would consider sharing something have you done in the past that may have been difficult but you found greatly rewarding after it was all said and done? Please use the comments section below. If you reply to this message it often winds up in my spam folder.
Until next time, I’m…
Wishing you well,
Rev. Russell Elleven, DMin, BCC, CWP is a Board Certified Coach and Certified Wellness Practitioner. He helps individuals obtain health and wellbeing through his coaching practice The Minister of Health, LLC and through congregational work as the executive director of The Genesis 1:29 Project.
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