After the leaky gut scare and horrific revelation behind supermarket bread in Week #3, my table is now a display of flax seeds, chia seeds, pumpkins seeds, goji berries together with bottles of probiotics and digestive enzymes.
I know what you’re probably thinking. I can now be a set builder for Dr. Oz, and I’ve somehow succumbed to a mad diet that tells me to eat like a gerbil.
But it’s not, because number one – I’ve just been adding the items listed above to my food, and number two – I haven’t stopped eating what I choose to eat. I’ve just been choosing better and doing it without resistance. The difference between me two months ago and me right now is that I’m starting to develop a physical abhorrence for horribly unhealthy food, and that I get full easily.
It is and has been a case of mind over matter. For instance, I attended a family gathering over the weekend, and I was offered a slice of red velvet cake (amongst others, because what’s a family reunion without aunts who force dessert down your throats and then comment on your weight?). Out of habit I said yes, but after one bite I instantly felt sick, like my body was going “bleeuurgghh” and demanding that I stopped.
Another thing I realized is that once you’ve equipped your body with enough nutrition and nutrients to last the day, it stops asking for more. And that was highly the case when my colleague, Celeste, made me “Mud” for breakfast last week.
It’s a recipe she learned from Jon through his original program, The Gabriel Method. The only type of mud I would eat is the kind that has “chocolate” in front of it. Just saying.
Anyway, this is how it looked like:
The presentation is not exactly Michelin, I know, and I’ll leave the taste to your imagination (it’s really not that bad), but all I can say is – after eating this, I was pretty much set throughout the day. All I needed was some salad, a banana and someone’s leftover grilled chicken fillet to replenish my energy.
But enough about my improved habits. Let me quickly share with you what I learned from Jon’s live lesson last week.
In it he touched on another of my main fat triggers – Chronic Stress, as he ventured into the mental and emotional factors behind weight gain. A toll for many of us who are bound to high stress jobs and economically challenging situations. In my case (as of late) – juggling daily deadlines, dealing with a brand new apartment as a first time buyer and not getting enough sleep – to name a few.
Because your body doesn’t know to read emotional stress, it reacts the way it would to stress in general, which is to retain fat and energy as a mean to protect you. Stress is inevitably related to fear, and causes the release of chemicals – mainly cortisol – that in turns alerts your body to assume that it is under attack, as illustrated in what Jon calls a Negative Spiral, below:
Unfortunately, chronic stress is not something I can run away from. It’s something I need to learn to manage, and the best way to start that is to learn to communicate with my body by understanding it. I think I’ve pretty much got that covered, so what next?
According to Jon, I have to develop a habit of positive thinking. Working in a company such as Mindvalley makes this an easier feat, of course, but we all have our own inner demons. Not that Jon is expecting me to assume positivity as swiftly as a Stepford wife. Instead, I need to strategize my way into the habit by shifting my common perceptions of negativity or unhappiness, so that I graduate into a Positive Spiral:
This is where activities and practices like meditation, visualization exercises, yoga, art and music come in. The relaxing, meditative state of alpha, for instance, has been known to increase brain performance and puts you in a state of consciousness between being awake and almost asleep. Yoga, as most of us know, relieves stress through its breathing and stretching techniques.
Then there are the simpler changes in life such as adopting power words to motivate you through your days, or and getting sunlight, which is something I greatly believe in. I’ve never been a fan of moping behind dark curtains and sleeping into the afternoon, even on weekends.
The best change of all? Living a life with low debt, free of loans and credit card statements. How’s that for stress free?
I can’t say that I’ll accomplish that in two weeks, but that’s another goal for another story.
Tania is currently testing out the Gabriel Code Body Transformation Journey, a 6-week course designed by Jon Gabriel, creator of the revolutionary mind-based weight loss program The Gabriel Method. Read her other journal entries on her personal journey towards reprogramming her body for healthy weight loss here.