By Rosie Battista
Have you ever heard of Vitamin L?
Vitamin L is the best-kept secret. It is not something you want to leave out of your diet. It is a necessary vitamin, and if you have a deficiency in it, you may be missing out on a higher well-being, satisfaction, and happiness level.
What is Vitamin L and where can I get it?
Vitamin L is short for Vitamin Love and refers to not only what you choose to eat but with what kind of loving practices and environment you choose to eat it in.
Let’s look at two scenarios…
1) Can you imagine going into a restaurant where everyone was angry, annoyed, and rushing? When they served you, they threw a paper plate of food carelessly on the table. Then, they proceeded to take your chair away and you had to stand and eat? And then they told you that you had five minutes to eat it. That negative energy and experience surely went right into the food you were eating because it affected your ability to enjoy it and most likely digest it.
Well, fortunately, this is not likely to happen in a restaurant that is still in business, but think about how many times you treat yourself this way. Standing while eating, eating in the car, eating on the run, grabbing and picking anything in sight, or driving through a fast food restaurant where you have no idea who prepared the food (or even what is actually in that food) that you are shoving in your mouth. This is what we would qualify as a low Vitamin L situation. The more meals we eat like this, the more likely we are to develop a deficiency, perhaps in the form of an unhealthy relationship with food, low energy, or unhealthy body weight.
Now, let’s look at another scenario...
2) Close your eyes and remember walking into your home, with your mama or grandma in the kitchen, the smell of her good cooking calling you to the table. Remember how she served it on her best china? You may not even remember what the food tasted like, but you remember the feeling of eating it. This is Vitamin L.
Good news is that you don’t need Mom or Grandma to have sprinkles of love; you have the ability to sprinkle your own food with Vitamin L. With this idea in mind, you may not only choose healthier selections, but healthier preparation and increased enjoyment. The intention behind it, the passion in it, and the joy around your meals— these are the ingredients for Vitamin L.
Where Are You Deficient?
Where are you depriving yourself from this necessary supplement? Let’s start with a list of areas where you might be low in Vitamin L.
1. Do you stand while eating?
2. Do you throw a meal together without paying attention to what you were doing?
3. Do you eat on paper plates?
4. Do you save your fine china only for guests?
5. Do you buy the finest ingredients that your budget will allow?
6. Do you enjoy the time you spend in the food store selecting the foods that you going to put into your precious body?
7. Do you fail to take your allotted lunch break at work?
Your body is the vehicle in which you live on this earth so taking care of it is of the utmost importance. The more you love yourself, the more you love your body, the more you love your life.
Here are 5 easy tips for adding a dose of Vitamin L to every meal. Remember that practice makes a habit happen.
1. Mind What You Are Eating - Since everything you take into your body goes into your bloodstream, then into your cells, and then becomes part of YOU, minding what you are eating is crucial to health and well-being. Ask yourself at every meal— is this the best and most loving choice I can make for my body right now? Then proceed to choose foods that have minimal ingredients, food that is as close to natural form as possible, grown from the ground and not produced in a factory.
2. Dine Daintily - Use candles or try chopsticks, two simple tools that can be used in your daily eating practice to slow it down and make it special. When you find you are standing over the sink, eating in your car or at your desk, you take the pleasure out of the experience and you’ll get hungrier faster. Using a candle calms you down, setting the atmosphere for a nice slow dining experience. Using a utensil, like chopsticks, that you may not be familiar with, will slow you down even more and add a whole lot of fun to your meal.
3. Spice it Up - Can you try a new spice to kick up your food? This week I grated fresh ginger onto an arugula and goat cheese salad. It was so yummy. Ginger is a great anti–inflammatory food.
4- Grace and Ease- Take it easy while your meal is in front of you. Before you dig in, take a deep breath and notice the aroma of the different smells and how the food looks on your plate. Eat with your eyes before you start with your mouth. Before you stick your fork in, give thanks for the food and kudos (or kisses) to the chef.
5- Pretty Plating - Use different and odd size plates to serve up your food. Place your food on your plate as if you are painting a pallet. Is your food colorful (a variety of vegetables and fruits in pretty slices?) For crying out loud—don't save your best china dishes for the once-a-year holiday guests. Treat yourself to the best every single day.