19 September 2013

Killing the Habit Zombie: When the Brain Craves Poison

Nothing is worth your health.
Nothing is worth poisoning yourself into stress, anxiety, and fear.
~ Steve Maraboli, Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience

In September, I’m participating in the Sapphire Even Day Blogging Challenge and the Two Pages-A-Day Writing Challenge. 

ld habits die hard, so the saying goes.  The more truthful saying would be, “Old habits are like zombies: you have to kill the body and the brain before it is truly dead.”

A lesson I have had ample time to learn, yet conveniently forget every time I smell meat and carbs cooking.  What makes it worse is that I know better.  And not just because I read every vegan, vegetarian, and raw food living book and magazine out there.

I know it because of the time I’ve spent in and out of the hospital.  I know because I document how I feel when I eat or juice raw veggies and fruit.  When I cut out the gluten and the refined sugar.  It’s not just my intellect.  My body knows.

But my zombie brain has other ideas.

Kill the Brains!
Image Credit: Saavy Sugar

Get Rid of the Gluten

Recently, I read a tongue-in-cheek article about shopping in Whole Foods.  When the writer asks where the whole wheat bread is, the clerk replies, ‘Oh the poison’s in Aisle 7.”  I laughed along with everyone else, but the truth is, that statement is true.  For a growing number of people, gluten intolerance, sensitivity and allergy is a part of life.  And for those of us who would rather consume an entire loaf of fresh baked French bread with about a pound of goat butter, it’s agony.

But not as agonizing as consuming said gluten-laden loaf and suffering from joint pain for a week after.

Get Down with the Juicer
I’m not a scientist, so I can’t tell you exactly what it is in gluten that swells joints.  All I can tell you is that raw vegetable juice reduces the swelling.  And as long as I keep gluten out of my diet and veggies in, my joints don’t hurt, I have more energy, and I’m a happier person.

Which is contrary to science in one respect: consuming gluten-laden carbs causes your brain to release seratonin, which makes you feel good.  The problem is, you crash soon after and need another carb "fix."  Not to mention all the calories and fat in said carbs contribute to your not feeling good about yourself.  And thus begins the cycle of addiction.

Not all addictions are to illegal things, my friends.

The key is to retrain the zombie brain.  Reprogram it to think that gluten is to be avoided at all costs, and veggies should make up at least 75-85% of your diet. That's the formula that works for me.  Yours may be different.  You'll only know if you try.

Next Steps
With the nights getting longer, and the air becoming chillier, it's the perfect time for another new beginning.  So for today’s prompt, here are my three sets of three things to help me healthier, happier, and wiser for the rest of 2013:

Go to bed at the same time
Do a 3 day Detox
Juice one meal a day for 2 weeks

Write in my journal every day
Spend time with one good friend a week
Pick pumpkins and apples

Read a book of John Muir’s essays
Research healing herbs
Attend a talk or seminar on a subject I’m passionate about

What about you?  How will you be healthier, happier, and wiser?

Oremus pro invicem,
~ Mikaela

My Top Five Friday post is appearing today to make room for a new book release announcement from one of my favorite authors tomorrow! Stay tuned!

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