Monthly Archives: February 2013

From Marc David- When You Eat Is As Important As What You Eat

This post by Marc David contains information that is familiar to anyone who has read about or has studied the traditional Asian system of healing known in the acupuncture meridians and the five elements system.
What I enjoyed about Marc’s writing on the topic is that he clearly relates the connection of the cycles of metabolism and food digestion with the environment of human beings. This is also the case when one studies the meridians and elements, but there seems to be less abstraction here in Marc’s  simple explanations.
Our body cycles correspond clearly to the planet we live in.  Marc reminds us that most Americans patterns of food consumption are out of synch with the cycles we live in.
So if you are a night eater,  notice the ways  the current culture we live in encourages our eating in patterns that are not optimal for our maintaining vibrant good health.
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When You Eat is as Important as What You Eat

Posted on February 14, 2013 – 12 Comments

Eye ClockRhythm is everywhere. Each particle of our being moves and pulsates, dances and sings, and keeps to the beat of a brilliantly conceived symphony. The whole of our biology is a fantastic clockwork of precise chemical and hormonal rhythms whose timing is critical for our survival and well-being. Your heart beating is a rhythm. Your lungs breathing, inhaling and exhaling vital atmosphere, is a rhythm. The electrochemical pulsation of the brain is a rhythm. So too is the menstrual cycle, waking and sleeping, digesting and eliminating, and the contraction and expansion of every cell, vessel, and organ in the body. Interfere with any of these and disease or death can follow.

Master rhythm and you master metabolism.

Indeed, much of what ails us from a nutritional perspective – weight gain, fatigue, digestive complaints, carbohydrate craving, overeating – can be resolved by entraining with the kinds of rhythms that naturally and effortlessly regenerate us. Lets take a look at how we can better understand and harness this important metabolic force.

One of the simplest and most reliable ways to measure the metabolic rate of the human body is to take its temperature. The hotter you are, the more metabolic you’ll be. The Latin name for our midsection-solar plexus-means “gathering place for the sun.” This highlights how we’ve long known that the basic design of the human form is a capturing device for the sun’s energy. The more efficiently we harness the sun’s warmth, the better we digest, assimilate, and calorie burn.

It’s no accident that we use temperature metaphors to describe what excites us. An energetic person is called “a fireball,” an attractive person is “hot,” we “warm up” to some people while others leave us “cold.”

As evolutionary fate would have it, body temperature has a rhythm that is consistent and predictable for most everyone, and this daily rhythmic fluctuation reveals some important insight into unleashing our metabolic potential. During the evening and early morning hours when we sleep, body temperature drops. It makes sense that our bodies are cooler at this time because were not busy hunting for animals in the jungle or hunting for bargains at the mall. Our muscles have little work to do at this time; the body is in a state of rest, healing, and repair. We do burn calories as we sleep, but not at the amount we use up in our waking hours.

The moment your eyes open in the morning, body temperature automatically begins to rise.

This is the same thing as saying your metabolism wakes up when you do. It makes biological sense because now the sun is up, and it’s time to find food, find a mate, do battle, and perhaps do a few good deeds. Even if you stayed in bed all day and didn’t move, your temperature/metabolism would still elevate because we’re programmed to entrain with the rhythms of the sun.

Since you’re naturally heating up in the morning, eating at this time is a smart bet if you’re trying to lose weight. Adding food to your gut will increase metabolic rate even more and provide your body with the nutrients its already preparing to process. Think of your gut as a furnace. When you add fuel, the heat rises.

There are, of course, exceptions to every nutritional rule. I’m presenting this information as guidelines – not absolute facts for everyone. Many people who live in hot-weather climates do great with no breakfast, a light breakfast, or a fruit breakfast. You’ll also find that you might do well on a substantial breakfast in the colder months, but will be drawn to eat lighter in the early hours during the warmer seasons. You may also go through periods where the first meal you eat isn’t until after lunch, and that too works fine, until your metabolism shifts into its next phase.

Body temperature continues a slow, steady rise and subsequently peaks around noon. It will exactly reach its apex the very moment the sun finds its high point in the sky – this is a little known scientific fact that shows our profound connection to the cosmos. Our digestive force is therefore hottest at lunchtime. It makes sense, then, that our largest meal would be best consumed at this time, when our ability to pulverize food is strongest.

After our metabolic peak at high noon, body temperature dips for the period between approximately 2:00pm and 5:00pm. It shouldn’t surprise you that just as we feel more awake when body temperature is rising, we feel sleepy when it’s falling. So if you’ve ever felt that there’s something wrong with you because your energy drops somewhere between 2-ish and 5-ish, don’t worry – you’re perfectly normal. Most people you ask will tell you that they feel tired during this time. It’s the human rhythm. Lions love to lounge around and absorb after their big kill. So do you and I.

Body energy – in the form of blood flow and oxygenation is rerouted to digestion after our midday meal.

The result is that we feel even more tired. People in many European and Latin American countries typically have their biggest meal at lunchtime – the peak metabolic time slot of digestion and calorie burning. Then they take a siesta. Businesses shut down, social activity goes quiet, and people snooze. They are honoring and working with the natural rhythms of the body. Entire cultures are designed to function in relation to digestive rhythms.

Except ours.

In America, most of us tank up on caffeine or sugar during the metabolic decline of 2:00 to 5:00 PM, pushing through our fatigue in service to a way of life that values the overdrive gear more than any other speed. Can you imagine what life would be like if you could relax during this time and let go of achieving and conquering? Numerous studies have shown that one or two fifteen- to twenty-minute rest periods during the day will profoundly increase cognitive function, physical performance, mood and energy. You don’t even need to sleep during this time. It’s simply about rest, stillness, closing off outside sensations, and recharging your batteries.

Simply put, resting is a metabolic enhancer.

At around 4:00 to 6:00 PM body temperature starts to rise again. This is when most people feel their energy return. It’s also when the English stop for teatime. It makes perfect sense to do your caffeine at this point, when metabolism is picking up anyway. By around nine o’clock, body temperature begins another downward trend in preparation for sleep. Indeed, sleep research reveals that we cannot fall asleep soundly unless temperature is dropping. Anything, then, that would raise body heat in the late evening would be counterproductive to good sleep. Recall that the act of eating raises body temperature. A big meal before bed could therefore interfere with your slumber. Once again, though, Americans have it backward. We tend to do a small to nonexistent breakfast, a moderate sized lunch, and a more often than not, a big dinner before bed. And this is exactly what you ought to do if your goal is restless sleep and weight gain.

When you eat is as important as what you eat

In a typical study, researchers put a group of people on a 2,000 calorie diet. In the first part of the study, test subjects could only eat their 2,000 calories at breakfast. They ate nothing else for the rest of the day. With this one meal in the morning, everyone either lost weight or maintained their existing weight. In the second phase of the study, the same exact people ate the exact same 2,000 calories diet, except this time, they could only eat it at dinner. With this one meal for the entire day, eaten in the evening, every single person in the study gained weight. Can you see why counting calories to lose weight can be a waste of energy if we don’t take into account when we eat those calories?

Timing is everything. Sumo wrestlers have known for centuries that large meals eaten in the late evening hours will give them the physical advantage they covet most – flab. Simply put, we calorie-burn less efficiently in the late evening hours.

So, if you want to get the ultimate metabolic benefit of eating, don’t eat your most substantial and nutrient-dense meal when your digestion is on a downturn in the late evening hours. Unless you’re seriously considering an unusual career change, I suggest that you relinquish the Sumo diet immediately. Eating little food during the day and much in the evening will never take you where you want to go when it comes to optimizing energy and burning calories.

I would love to hear your experiences with eating and rhythm.
Please let me know your thoughts below – I don’t always get a chance to comment on each one but I do read them.

My warmest regards,

Marc David

Founder of the Institute for the Psychology of Eating

Lee Harris’s February 2103 Energy Forecast

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One of the things that I enjoy about working with Lee Harris’s monthly energy forecast is that it is always so valuable for me to share the material in varying time frames.

It is three weeks into the month and what he said in the first week  is meaningful  to me right now.

For the past week I have been feeling a quality in my life that is really different from my life for at least the past thirty years.

One of my personal goals was to minimize my experience of  being involved with being busy.  I have been feeling pressured by my continual attention to doing tasks.

Last week I began experiencing a new sense of  having time- lots of time- and space to relax, ponder, do more Repatternings on myself, time to read books- time to be.

I am seeing more clients than before. I’m cooking, baking, writing, re-connecting with long lost friends. All of this with a feeling that something in my reality has shifted so completely that I am living in a new way.

Even though I may actually be doing more, I don’t feel the pressure or sense of crowded busy-ness!

When I read Lee’s discussion of horizontal energy waves as a new phenomenon for us this month, I could feel what he was talking about.

I hope that you find something memorable in his forecast too.

Hi Everyone

Welcome to the February Energy Forecast for 2013.  We had a break from a monthly forecast in January because of the annual message that I created – 2013 Year of Community.

So it was an interesting month to go through. Everybody at some level or another experienced these incredible days of what some have called muddy, some have called intense and some have called half-asleep. There are a few reasons for this.

One of the keys that I always felt would happen post the 21st of December would be a big “now what?” from a lot of people – many people were expecting something to happen on that day, even though so many of us had discussed that it wasn’t going to be a one day occurrence. But still, none of us as human beings absolutely know what’s going to happen. So there was a curiosity.

 

And even within the psyche of those who don’t believe in the idea of spiritual or psychic change, December the 21st had a meaning to people.

So this, combined with the holidays, left everyone quite disoriented and some people disillusioned. So many people flatlined energetically, for at least the first week or two of January, if not longer.

Last night before recording this message, I tuned in to see what would be one of the themes for this month ahead. Normally, I’m given words and concepts and I was given a few of those this morning, which I will share in a second, but last night I was shown was an image. The image was of this being a turning point for us – January into February, but we’ll really feel it in February. Prior to this in the last few years, the energy waves that we’ve been experiencing as human beings have been a lot more vertical than they are about to become. We are now going into a more horizontal period. I’ll explain.

If you think of a coffee plunger, a cafetiere where you press down and it compresses all of the coffee and the water into the glass – what we were previously experiencing was a plunging up and down (energetically) that was quite similar to this. So it was rapidly pushing and compressing us through those things that we needed to clear or change. Physical health was often the manifestation of this, which is why so many people have been ill in the last couple of months; because that is one way to clear out dense and old energy.

We’re all a little different. Some of us tend to process more emotionally, some more physically, some more mentally and usually we all process any of those at any one time to some degree.

So the difference that we’re about to experience in the coming energy waves is a more horizontal process. It’s funny because as I’m saying this, I can feel a whole bunch of you going, “Oh God, not more.” (Laughter) I’m afraid we are still on Planet Earth as human beings going through the human transformation that we always knew would be colorful, to say the least.

So this new ‘horizontal’ experience is going to slightly change the way that we process things.
Before, we were rapidly catapulted into things that we needed to clear, and often it was intense, fast and took you by surprise. Those of you who’ve worked a lot with developing your awareness in the last couple of years, and heightened seeing some of the areas that you have cycles around fears or around limitations, versus the parts of you that you can say are very expanded and open. So, for example, some of us are very good at being brave in certain areas, but in others we have a lot of fear and restriction and we notice, “Oh, wow, I’m working with an energy template here that’s holding me back”.

Regarding some of those cycles and areas that you have now identified, this new horizontal energy is going to allow you to open them out more, and examine them. So there will be less shock involved and there will be more consciousness in working with these areas.

So let’s say your fear is of rapidly changing your relationship, your partnership. You’ve been circling around this for a year and it’s been very intense. What you will now be able to do is to see with a much wider vision what it is that needs to change in the partnership. Whether it is that the partnership has served its time and its purpose, or whether it is that you’re holding onto some things that you can open up in you, so that the relationship can become fuller. But the spaciousness of this horizontal energy will make it feel different to you. Rather than bringing you the feeling you’re the victim of it, or being pushed into something you didn’t see coming, the spaciousness is going to allow you a lot more peace around examining some of these areas with less judgment, less fear and less of a sense of needing to get away from these areas.

So this really speaks of the mastery available to those of us who work with awareness and consciousness, but these energy waves will also speak quite clearly about the mind.

The mind is such a key and such a clue. And the mind is, in several areas of the self-development and spiritual world, wrongly demonized and spoken of as a villain and an enemy. The problem with making the mind an enemy or a villain, is that the mind is always connected to you somehow. So there is always some emotion in you or some old experience that you went through that was hurtful or difficult that you made an alliance with your mind around.

So if you made an alliance with your mind when you got rejected by somebody, the next time you go to put yourself in a situation where you may be rejected again, your mind will send you warning sentences to stop you, so that you don’t have to go through that pain.

Now, as we know, that’s a trap, as we actually just have to feel whatever it is that’s inside us, so that it can then transmute and open. Because any wound or any area where we’re limited holds us back from being our full selves and living with greater happiness and greater ease.

Whether you are somebody living in a mansion with millions of dollars or whether you’re somebody living with very little out in a mud hut, the life experience is universal. And it’s usually the case that those of us in western society have to work even harder to reconnect ourselves, versus those people who actually have a lot less and are still more in touch with their senses around the world; and they are not living in such an over-stimulated, technological place.

So when working with the mind; here are some tips from me.

If you find that your mind is going very frantic one day, so for example, you notice that you are bothered by your mind and all of your focus is going up there. Perhaps the mind is saying, “I’m worried about money and what if I don’t get that job and what if this, what if that…” 

Firstly, all of those things really are simply “what-ifs” and  the mind’s “what-ifs” are just fears of what may or may not happen in the future, usually based on the past. And of course, worries about the future, when you remember that any of us could die at any moment, become a lot less important.

So first of all, mentally understanding the concept that worry is a non-truth. It’s a pattern based on fear and anxiety that is coming from inside the body.

So this thought is not the enemy. This thought is connected to anxiety or instability inside, so if you can identify and work with that emotion, the thought goes away.

You know this to be true because when you are at peace and happy, none of this mind chatter is going on.

So, if you catch yourself having lots and lots of thoughts, you can either stay in a thought cycle that could last hours and could keep you in a fairly low vibration, or you can catch it, see what’s happening and re-pattern both the thoughts and also work with the feeling in the body.

So if with the example I just gave, you have fear thoughts about money, about job, just go into your body and ask yourself – what am I feeling? What feelings are creating these thoughts? And you may get an answer verbally or you may just notice the feeling, by stopping putting all of your attention on your mind. You may then notice that you’re feeling quite amped up, or feeling quite afraid. So first of all just breathe, and let the body calm a little. Then help redirect the feeling by making an affirmation around it.

So for example, if fear was the feeling, you would say, “There is nothing to be afraid of. I do not need to be afraid. I release this fear.”  Whatever words feel right to you. The reason it’s important to verbalize something (or to say it inside your mind if you’re in a public place and you don’t feel so comfortable doing that or it’s not convenient), is that through doing this, you reprogram the other words that are going round your head.

Just taking a couple of minutes out, whenever you notice you are caught in the mind, and just letting the body breathe and stop. And even just doing that, even if it takes some time to reprogram your thoughts, you’ll notice it will give you more space inside once more and you’ll be able to back away from that which you’re getting mentally obsessed by. As the obsession has risen from the energy-body into the mind and the problem is that the mind is always a ‘full stop’. You’re never going to get anywhere above the mind, so thoughts become circular. But if you come back down into the body, you actually start to clear it, and then these thoughts start to disappear.

This is a time for many of us to become more diligent about re-patterning and re-training ourselves. We do run on pattern as humans and we run on patterns in the relationships that we have with other people and yes, you can meditate and you can do other spiritual exercises such as yoga or exercise, all sorts of things can help – but when you have limiting thoughts in the mind, one of the quickest ways to release them is to reprogram yourself with other words; more positive words that you have chosen.

And what you will find is if you practice this over a period of days and weeks, it’s not just that it gives you  relief in that moment. You will also be re-training yourself to have more expansive feelings and thoughts, so that you don’t get trapped up there in limitation again.

The reason I’m focusing on this so much this month is because the message I was shown this morning was that this is a month that we can really learn to trust ourselves and our lives more and create more space for ourselves. But it will take some diligence on our behalf. (Laughter) And again I can hear a whole bunch of you going, “Ugh, really?” 

And if that’s the place you’re in, you need to re-pattern that thought. It’s fine to be tired and it’s fine to be exhausted and it’s fine to go through this month deciding you’re really not going to do too much. But a thought that’s negative towards your own potential transformation is a thought that needs re-patterning.

So if you’re exhausted, be good to yourselves. But most of us are going to see a widening of the space that we noticed happening in January. Many of us in the world had experiences where, post the intense days or the muddy days, we would come back feeling stronger, clearer and wider than we ever had before and more at peace with everything that was going on around us within our internal self.

We’re living in times where violence and fear are being put on the table a lot more. And it’s escalating around us. And it’s important to both center yourself around these evidences of violence but also to hold your boundary and to have your voice around what you feel is a way that we can live together as humans on the planet. Versus just suffering through what you are seeing going around you.

It’s important to find that internal fire. And you find that fire by making yourself less of a hostage to fear. And through working with the mind this month you will find you’ll have fast shifts out of some of the historic fears that you had, and also some of the collective fears that are going on around us.

As ever, be good to yourselves, be good to others, but remember it starts with you. And I know that most of you listening to this will have more of a tendency to neglect yourselves and focus on giving your energy out to others. Or that has been your greatest mastery change in the last few years.

So keep working with knowing when you need to be alone. Knowing when you need to ‘not be’ where you have promised to be; because that’s hitting a lot of us in bigger way than ever before at the moment.

So I hope you enjoy the month of February. It’s nice to be back with you all.

Lots of love

Lee
x

Travels in Italy

Today, on Valentine’s Day I want to begin sharing with you impressions concerning my dream vacation to Italy.

I lived  in England and traveled abroad  many years ago. As I time went by I felt that the one place I couldn’t miss experiencing in this lifetime was Italy.

I was right. The  two week experience ended four months ago and is still  so close to my heart that I haven’t shared much about it or even mentioned it in the newsletter before now.

The beauty, art, architecture, food, countryside and overall joie de vivre energy touched me very deeply. In very subtle ways I feel that I have been fundamentally changed.

As a result I feel more grounded, settled and comfortable in my life and in my body . There seems to be more balance in my own masculine and feminine energies. I feel like I was seeped in all that Italy is.

Metaphorically, I was a black and white photo before the trip and during my stay in Italy somehow I became tinted with infusions of new colors.

What I’d like to do to share the experiences with you is  write about some of what I saw from time to time. I took over 1700 photos so I’ll  present just a few of them at a time and tell you what what captured my heart.

I also want to share with you that I had an incredibly wonderful travel agent, Mia Martin of The Travel Authority. If you ever need someone to help make a dream come true in traveling, she’s the person to contact. She can be reached at mia.martin@thetravelauthority.com, 1-812-588-0910.

When I was in Montepulciano, Tuscany my innkeeper not only knew where and when my dinner reservations were, but I was also picked up after meals without having to call for transportation . That’s the kind of attention to details Mia provided.

So on this day of the heart I would like to show you  a very few photos taken at the Royal Apartments in The Palazzo Pitti. This is where the rulers of Florence, the Medici family lived.

As you can see, the Medici family were great patrons of the artists of the Renaissance. The lavish attention to gorgeous details and figures is apparent. In person it is fabulously beautiful and the details make my heart sing. I rejoice as my heart opens in response.

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