Episode 029 True Nourishment
I am soooooooo excited to be back this week to share everything I know on nourishment. Well...maybe not everything because we would be here for hours!
I did promise you that I would dive deeper into Kapha season so that exactly what we are talking about today; Nourishment to get your thriving during Kapha season.
If you are new to the podcast and/or didn't have a chance to listen to week's episode, stop now and go back to episode 028 where you will get my top 3 ways to navigate through Kapha season.
Let's do a quick review:
- Kapha season is mid-February to mid-June
- Qualities for this season are damp and cold
- Temperatures tent to jump around without making sense
- Green is in the air
- Navigating the transition is a day-to-day check in
Now let's get into food! I know you guys love it when I talk about food because the number of listens skyrocket. Just know that this community is a food community.
I am going to be 100% transparent: sometimes I am not good at feeding myself. I always eat breakfast food, however, if it's a writing day sometimes my body doesn't get hungry until almost noon and I wake up between 630-730 everyday.
This is something that I am consciously aware of and am monitoring to see what is triggering my hunger. On the days where I start eating at noon I only get one other meal in and a snack.
It seems that the more creative I am and the more time I directly spend making things (writing, chanting, singing) the less hungry I am.
I am vata dominant and this is something that vata dominant people often experience so I am in constant exploration of ways to balance this out. I wanted to share that small story because I had had to figure out ways to be able to completely nourish myself while having a very low appetite.
Notice I did NOT use the word eat, because they are not the same. Eating and nourishment don't always go hand in hand. Tons of Americans are eating multiple times a day, and very few are actually nourishing themselves.
A nourished body has the energy to go to multiple EPAs, take class at Broadway Dance Center, and go wait tables until 2am. Now granted you will be tired but when you are truly filling up your body with the nutrients it needs, you will have boundless amounts of mental clarity, energy, and resiliency.
Let's start with an example:
Caprese Sandwich from Essen
- White Bread- no nutritional value, spikes your blood sugar
- Tomatoes- at this time of year tomatoes aren't in season so their nutritional value is low
- Mozzarella- cold/wet dairy in Kapha season adds to much mucus to the system
- Basil- anti-inflammatory that keeps you from getting sick
Now this seems like a healthy option. You might have even thought it was healthy. It's certainly delicious; I know I have my share of them, but it does not provide you any sustainability, or energy. Not to mention the lack of vitamins and minerals in the sandwich.
I would label this as negative nutrition. That means that there are more calories than actual health benefits.
Now let's take a look at an herbed chicken bowl from Roast Kitchen:
- Quinoa- protein, energy boosting
- Kale- superfood with tons of vitamins and minerals
- Protein- allows you to feel fuller longer
- Veggies- more vitamins and minerals
In this option you have a meal. It's delicious, is packed with energy boosting foods, has tons of vitamins and minerals, and protein to help you feel full and fueled.
This is what I mean by nourishment and you know what? They are right across the street from one another. If you are at Pearl Studios or Ripley you have the ability to choose how you want to feel.
Choose meals that provide you with something other than calories. Sure the Caprese Sandwich will take away your hunger, however the quinoa bowl does that and more!
During Kapha season many of you might start to feel your allergies come into play, or even experience a spring cold. To manage those symptoms tune into what you are eating:
1. Think GREEN
Like I said last week, green foods are sprouting up everywhere. Whether you are cooking or buying out, make sure your meal includes lots of greens and iceberg lettuce doesn't count.
Green veggies like spring peas, kale, arugula (perfect for spring with it's spiciness), asparagus, dill, chives, garlic scapes are all good options. These are just a few of the items you can begin to add in to your food choices.
These fresh green foods provide you with tons of nutrition including anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal properties that help you manage your allergies and spring colds.
This doesn't have to be complicated or expensive. Try this:
- Scramble some eggs
- Add garlic, salt, and, pepper
- Toss in some kale or arugula
Boom! You have just made a Kapha supported meal and your already well on your way of getting in your veggies for the day.
2. Cook for yourself
I can feel you rolling your eyes, but trust me when I say...COOK FOR YOURSELF! Here's why:
- It's cheaper
- You control the quality of your food
- You are in charge of balancing your body
If you live in NYC you have a plethora of "healthy" options. Some masking as healthy, some are actually healthy. Unless you're making bank, buying food out like that will bankrupt you quickly.
I mean Hu Kitchen in Union Square is an amazing paleo focused restaurant that seeks to bring back food to it's natural state. If you get their 1/4 chicken with 1 side it will cost you 11.50. No drink. No tax. I love their food and I go there when I can indulge but this full time actress and yoga teacher can't afford that on a daily basis. That's 60/week and that's only 1 meal a day!
Anywhere you eat out that has healthy food will cost you over $10.00 guaranteed. I ate at The Ayurveda Cafe last week and it cost me 14.00 before tip. These are lovely places to indulge and treat yourself and when you are on a budget cooking most of your meals will benefit you so much more.
Now before you tell me you don't have time, let me rebuttal with: Do you really not have time or are you just not making it a priority?
Because what I know is a scrambled egg breakfast takes 10 minutes. Any meal can be make in a crock pot and you don't even have to be home. A rice cooker can also be a one pot meal while you catch up on Modern Family.
At the time of this podcast there are rice cookers AND crockpots on craigslist for 10-40 dollars. Get the $10.00 one!
You make make simple and easy Kapha supporting meals with little to no cooking. Try:
- 2 chicken breast
- Cut some potatoes, carrots, onion, garlic, salt, and pepper
- Add 1/4 cup of water
- Turn on slow cooker (Low for 8 hours, High for 4 hours)
- When it's done shred the chicken
- Add some cooked kale on the side
- Dump in potatoes, onion, garlic, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, white beans or lentils, and some veggie broth.
- Add some leafy greens last mintue
- Spoon and serve
You don't even need to be there and you have meals for days!!!!!!
3. Get to know your spices
Kapha season is the perfect time to dig into your spice cabinet. Because Kapha season is so cold and damp, spices provide a nice heat and drying effect to balance that out.
If nothing else keep black pepper, cayenne pepper, and ginger in your kitchen. Those 3 are essential for this season and perfect for your Ayurveda spice cabinet.
Your morning tonic could switch to lemon, ginger, cayenne and would get you on the right track to fight seasonal allergies and colds.
Add some extra black pepper on your morning eggs.
Don't feel like you have to create brand new meals in order to transition into Kapha season. It's small changes done with joy that make the most powerful results.
This week add some green into ONE meal each day.
I would love for you to shout me out on Instagram. Take a pic of that kapha supported meal, and tag Balanced for Broadway! I can't wait to see what you're eating this week.
Next week I am gonna dig into cleansing, why Kapha season is perfect for a cleanse, how to do it and for how long. Stay Tuned!!
Get into the kitchen!