Sunday, November 29, 2009

Know Your Food - Food Inc.

If we have a brand new Mercedes Benz, we would be sure to put premium fuel in it, and the best oil because we know that diesel fuel would do damage to our lovely car. In the same manner we should know what the food is that we put into our bodies. For many people who practice yoga in the West we come across the debate to be Vegan, Vegetarian, Eat Meat, Eat Fish etc. In India many people practice a Vegetarian diet because Yoga originally was a Hindu practice, and in the Hindu faith they abstain from eating meat. Many yogis also avoid the consumption of meat for the principal of Ahimsa or non harming.

While most of my life I ate a primarily vegetarian diet, I have also eaten meat. Growing up, I was used to fresh, farm meat (we actually had our own chickens) at the dinner table. Along with that, on my many trips to India, all the meat served was fresh, never from a grocery store refrigerated package, rather from the backyard. The meat was small or I should say normal size, compared to the turkey size chickens that are filling the grocery store meat sections today. While the meat may have been healthier when from a non GMO farm, my love for animals was the reason why I gravitated to the vegetarian dishes.

Getting back to the topic of knowing your food...whether you eat meat, or not, it is important to know where your food comes from. Educate yourself on the reality of factory farming in the West. If it doesn't bother you that animals are manufactured in the way that they are, at least you can make an informed choice. You should know your food before you put it in your body. People may not want to admit publicly that there could be a link with our genetically modified meat products and the rapid rise in various diseases, because this is a billion dollar industry that has a lot of government support. However, it is every individuals right to investigate, educate and then come up with the best decision that meets their health goals. Here are some excellent resources that can better highlight the Western food industry:
  • Food Inc. (a brilliant documentary)
  • Eating Animals, By Jonathan Safran Foer (a novel style account of the food industry)
  • The Omnivores Dilema, By Michael Pollan
  • In Defense of Food, By Michael Pollan
When we do things with a purpose, our lives are better, and our world is better. In the same manner, when we eat with a purpose, our bodies are better and our world is better. Perhaps I could tell everyone to drop the fast food burgers, fried chicken, decrease salt and sugar intake, and replace it with fresh veggies, fruits, legumes, and advise people read the labels avoiding the excessive soy, soy lecithin, high fructose corn syrup products...but I think it is better for people to make the choice on their own, but it should be an educated choice. Treat your body, like you would your Benz, and use only the best! ~ Peace & hugs

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