Part Four - Foods for our Emotional Health
In the words of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, "there is NOTHING to fear, but fear itself". In this blog series on Immunity, fear keeps coming up as a theme. In Part 3 we discussed an aspect of fear called stress and its effects on immunity. Practicing self-love, self-care, and self-compassion were recommended to fill up our cups and lower our stress levels so we can help fill up others. Many strategies were suggested to help lower our stress levels but one that was left off the table (no pun intended) was ….food. Are there foods that can reach us at an emotional level to help destress us? Or help us feel less lonely in our quarantines? Read on and find out…
“Our gut microbiome is a direct extension of the nature we touch” says Dr Zach Bush. If you have not heard this triple board certified medical doctor speak, be prepared to be inspired. In his spare time from his medical career, he is crusading to change the landscape of farming to save our gut microbiomes and the planet.
A friend of mine just confided that she has been on a 2 day spree of listening to anything she can by Dr Zach Bush. I proudly admit I did this a few months back. Listening to his authenticity becomes addictive as he explains what each of us can do to not only improve our own health but effect the planet's. See Resources below for his latest talk. May you too go on from there to hear more of his insights and raise your consciousness. There are many interviews on You Tube; my favourites are with Rich Roll.
The real question is can “the nature” we put in our mouths, affect our microbiomes enough to affect our thoughts, feelings and emotions? With the discoveries of the vagus nerve connecting these two organs (brain and microbiome) and the gut having its own nervous system (the Enteric Nervous System), of course food can affect our thoughts.
Anthony William, also known as the Medical Medium calls this time “the Quickening”. It’s an era when technological advancements fuel a faster than ever paced life….and yet all this development still leaves us vulnerable if we don’t adapt at the foundation. And yet advancements in all kinds of other arenas are pulling the wool over our eyes, distracting us from how susceptible our bodies are. So what do we do about this? He says….we need to adapt.1
The Holy Four
Anthony William calls these following four food groups the Holy Four. He sees them bringing more light into our lives and recommends we lean heavily on then to help our adaptation to the Quickening:
- Wild Foods
When you understand that fruits are cancer fighters, vegetables flush out acidity, herbs and spices build the immune system, and wild foods help us adapt to stress, reaching for these foods transforms from a chore into an opportunity.2
There are fruits that prime us to find our true friends, vegetables that give us hope when we’re grieving, herbs and spices that help us cultivate self-worth, and wild foods that make good memories stick. Like tools in a toolkit, we can reach for these different healing foods in our different times of need.3
Top Foods for Emotional Support for Immunity
It is common knowledge that healthy comfort foods nourish our bodies and spirits in times of stress. “The future feels uncertain and it’s natural to feel fear in a time like this. So much of our fear is generated by focusing on and paying attention to the things we can’t control. The antidote to this fear is to focus on the things we can control – and when you hold the apron strings for your family in your hands, you can choose to prepare nutritious and delicious foods that are both immune supportive and comforting.”4
Let us focus on a few of the top recommended foods for troubling emotions happening right now during this pandemic. I came up with these by researching Life Changing Foods by Anthony William.
- Lemons & Limes
- Oregano, Rosemary, Sage & Thyme
- Cats Claw
- Lemon Balm
- Licorice Root
- Atlantic Sea Vegetables
- Raw Honey
For Loneliness & Other Heart-Related Emotions
- Leafy Greens
- Oranges & Tangerines
- Sweet Potatoes
- Sprouts & Microgreens
I would love to share all of Anthony William’s insights on the emotional support of all these foods listed but it would not be fair to him and it would be too long of a blog here. Better yet, read his book: Life Changing Foods. Take your time savouring each food described, page by page as I currently am – it is honestly a delight.
What I can is give you a taste of his excerpts on some of these Holy Four foods that struck me as beneficial for the current pandemic stressors and heart-related emotions we are all currently experiencing. For those in isolation right now, I included some foods specific to help loneliness.
Apples: “The apple is an ancient food that brings us back to the source. It is one of the very first foods to have comforted us, and so apples connect us to a sense of sanctuary. This make them ideal for when you’re feeling depressed alienated, invalid, powerless, useless, and worthless. Apples open up a part of you and change the energy within and around you to attract happier and brighter things. They can bring back your vibrancy, elevate you, lighten your spirit, and make you more energetic.”
Bananas: “They can help reverse a state of mind that is saturated with fear.”
Lemons & Limes: “Lemons & Limes are the ideal soother when you’ve been rattled by difficult news. These wonder fruits can alter feelings of sadness, distress, and worry, helping to lift the spirits, lighten the heart and reverse melancholy during troubled times.”
Oranges & Tangerines: “The juice of an orange or tangerine is like liquid sunshine. If you often feel sad, weepy, glum, or down, oranges cut through the gloom and shine a light on your life. They are the perfect food to eat when you feel sun-deprived and lonely, as though there’s an empty void that needs to be filled. Oranges take out all the chill and fill you with warmth instead.”
Pears: “An overburdened, overstressed, and overheated pancreas and liver are often behind someone’s unsettled emotions such as frustration, irritation, uneasiness, or lack of peace. Pears are the ideal food to remedy this situation, because they are the ultimate cooling tonic, especially for the liver and pancreas.”
Artichokes: “Eaten on a regular basis, artichokes have the power to open up the heart chakra, and to ignite healing through this sacred channel.”
Celery: “Celery restores the entire digestive system. Use it for its calming effects when you are feeling frightened, panicky, shocked, fretful, nervous, threatened, unsure, afraid, or defensive.”
Sweet Potatoes: “When you need some coddling, there’s nothing more comforting than a baked sweet potato. Unlike greasy, fried or sugar-filled and processed “comfort” foods that leave you feeling bloated, lethargic and more depressed, a sweet potato has properties that actually give you the sensation that the world around you has shut down. This is an important function that makes you feel safe and soothed, like you’re getting a hug even if no one’s there to give you one, so that you can draw up the strength to deal with hard times.”
Lemon Balm: “Stress and insecurities often cause us to feel fearful about what’s around the bend. We find ourselves lying in bed at night, wondering what will happen to us and our families. If you’re worried about what the future holds for yourself and others, lemon balm can take the worry away and replace it with a sense of peace.” Maybe you could plant it in your garden this summer?
Aromatic Herbs: Oregano, Rosemary, Sage & Thyme: “In the stressful times we live in, it’s understandable when emotional reactions are heightened. When heightened emotional response becomes chronic, though, and you can’t get yourself out of a cycle of overreacting, turn to oregano, rosemary, sage and thyme. These herbs help break the cycle of feeling consistently overstimulated, so that you can take what comes on more of an even keel.”
Atlantic Sea Vegetables: “For the person whose behaviour is unpredictable – someone who frequently swings from up to down, from hot to cold – sea vegetables are an incredible tool. Often when somebody is hypersensitive, rocked easily, or emotionally unstable, she or he is ungrounded. Atlantic sea vegetables are the most grounding food possible. When we eat them, we get the energetic essence of going for a swim in the ocean, a very grounding activity.”
Raw Honey : helps good memories stick.
It’s only appropriate to let Anthony William have the last say on this blog article: “Keep a light heart. The time has come to rise up, to tap into the divine forces waiting to help us. The time has come to thrive.”
If you prefer holistic nutritional support with your diet, supplementation or lifestyle – just reach out on my Website Contact Page or book an appointment for an online 30 minute or 1 hour phone/video consultation (during this quarantine).
Please stay tuned for Part 5 – Can electromagnetic radiation affect immunity?
1 – Life Changing Foods by Anthony William Pg 17
2 – Life Changing Foods by Anthony William Pg 41
3 - Life Changing Foods by Anthony William Pg 29
4 – Ann Louise Gittleman Unikey Health Blog 2 Apr 20