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Archive for June, 2009

button2images I was flying several weeks back and a commercial came on the little monitor that was convienetly mounted just in front of my face. The eye abducting media was swift and colorful… there was a man running through this obsticale and that hurdal to ultimatly get to his destination which was an airplane seat (much like the one I was sitting it). He landed in the seat and, of course, after all of that hurdle jumping you can imagine that he was hungry… so he pushes a button and magically a quick and processed snack food arrived. Then you hear, “Hungry.. we’ve got a button for that.”

Have we evolved?

It’s funny, because on many levels we have evolved, and yet when it comes to things like food and sex, we want it and we want it now! We don’t want to think about it (generally speaking), and we don’t really want to be responsible for it.. preferring to explain our actions away to subtle or not so subtle “forces of nature.”

Is there hope for life beyond the “quick fix” mentality and cultural conditioning?

Hearing that phrase “we’ve got a button for that” really pushed my buttons! But when I stepped back I could see that my desire for that “quick fix,” to whatever it might be, is strong and deep. It’s indeed a part of each one of us… part of the conditioning of modern culture. And the fact is we live in busy times and there seems to be more and more “need” for convenience. So what is the answer… more “buttons?”

What is the true price of convenience?

I think the question is, what is true price of denial? I can see in my own experience that to the degree that I avoid facing into the consequences of my actions I suffer on a soul level. I have seen too much to turn my back on. I know too much about the consequences of “bad” (and terribly convenient food) food over time; both for individuals, culture, and the environment. Does this mean I never eat cookies! 🙂 Of course not. What I am getting at is this…

From a bigger perspective, being responsible is the most convenient thing that one can do

Convenience is defined as “fitness or suitability for performing an action or fulfilling a requirement.”

Despite some of the negative aspects of humanity, life is fundamentally positive and as humans Being, we have a tremendous capacity to self reflect, create, and innovate. Indeed we are “suitable” for tremendous conscious evolution should we choose it. So the point is keep moving ahead, really take life in, and care enough to evolve our choices to match the reality of our cognitive sophistication.

Buttons metaphor

The “button” seems to be a metaphor for a few things:

1. Obliteration: Blow it all up… “I don’t like those guys and we can’t figure out a way to work it out”

2. An attention getter: buzzz… “service please”

3. Quick fix maker: Push the button and receive instant gratification

4. Grandma: “Button up or you’ll catch cold”

The Evolutionary Button

I wonder what a button might represent in an evolutionary context? How about a a hybrid of the best of the above:

If we took as much responsibility as “grandma,” as much drive and focus as the “obliterator,” as much attentiveness as the “bell man” and mixed this with an intense passion to create the future NOW (the “quick fix” maker), then we’d have fantasticly worthy recipe for human character that could take humanity to places we could only imagine!

What does this have to do with food?

Humm.. good question :). What I do know is that “how we do anything is how we do everything.” If what we choose to eat is based on quick fix values, then that is what we become (quick, easy, shallow, and empty of inherient nutrients). How about pushing an Evolutionary Button and seeing where we can go together!

~ Tiffany


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grocery-aisle-hdr_lrgWhile interest in the energetic properties of food doesn’t seem to be mainstream yet, the undercurrent of food, health and awareness is definitely full of leaders in the field who are interested in more than just the biochemical affect food has on the body.   In reading Steve Gagnes book, Food Energetics, I came across this one line that particularly struck my interest “The femininity of dairy products is undoubtedly one of its most appealing factors to humans.”  This sentenced triggered my curiosity, flooding my mind with all sorts of questions.  There is no doubt that our society loves dairy.  Now, whether it is for the femininity of it or not, I can’t say.  Many would say it has nothing to do with “femininity” and all to do with the proteins that mimic opiates in the body (this is called “molecular mimicry”) getting, in a sense high (this phenomena can also happen when consuming gluten).  But what I can say is that food affects us in ways our science labs haven’t been able to prove.  I know this from numerous personal experiences,  and I’m sure you do to, but for clarity’s sake I’ll share with you my most recent example.

I live in Seattle and this weekend was so fortunate to have out of town relatives come in for a visit.  We had a fantastic time touring the great city, catching all the main attractions, and in the midst of our exploring around town we ate out for several of our meals.  I usually avoid gluten and am a conscious-eating kind of girl, but since I don’t have a strong sensitivity to gluten and I was with seven others, we just did what was easiest. Probably no shock, but turns out the easiest food to get on the go is bread.  From sandwiches and burgers (veggie burgers mind you) to quick snacks, everything contained bread or bread-like particles (gluten & wheat). The result:  One extremely fatigued girl with an unhappy belly.  I experienced a dramatic change in how I emotionally and physically felt, and more importantly my own clarity.  What was even more shocking, was that as we reached day 3, I actually had a hard time remembering before this diet change.  It was like I knew I felt better off wheat and gluten, but I didn’t actually believe it.  Luckily my intellect and conviction pulled me through and as I bid farewell to my family I also said a not so sorrowful goodbye to bread, wheat and gluten.  Within the next day I no longer needed to remember if I felt better on a gluten free diet, I experienced it firsthand.

Moral of the story:  Deviating from our usual healthful diet for a short period of time is not always a bad thing.  It can show us just how powerful and controlling food is and remind us that there actually is a purpose in taking care  of ourselves.  Not only should we strive to be conscious eaters, but humble ones as well.  Changing one’s diet is one of the most challenging tasks we are faced with, because it is messing with our biochemistry, affecting our thought processes and emotional states. Basically, when we start tinkering with the diet we’re messing with our survival instincts, not matter how evolved we are.

So, are dairy products loved for their feminine essence? I can’t say.  What I can say is food certainly affects us in more profound ways than we typically recognize.  Next time you take a bite, ask yourself, just how far is this bite going to take me? and then check it out.  You might be surprised by the answer.

-Amber

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Fresh Copper River Salmon Fresh Copper River Salmon over Diakon Radish Greens with Lemon Thyme and Capers

Copper River Salmon tastes as rich and smooth as butter. This is due to its high, healthy fat content. It is only available fresh for about 1 month per year. I just delight in getting my hands on this delicacy every spring! If you hurry you can still get some in the stores. Diakon radish greens you may not be as familiar with, but they are beyond excellent. They have a hint of radish taste, and the texture of something a little less fibrous than collards. They don’t have to cook long at all and they are quite a surprise of flavor and texture… especially if you prepare them as I suggested below. The lemon zest and capers add to depth of flavor and a perfect tartness that is essential for the springtime pallet. Enjoy!

Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Serves 2

Salmon
1 tablespoon high heat oil
Âľ to 1 pound Copper River Salmon (other varieties are fine J)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Optional pinch of cayenne pepper
Optional crumbled goat cheese for the top

 Diakon Radish Greens

3 tablespoon olive oil
4 cups, washed and chopped diakon radish greens (the tops of the diakon radish, available in farmers markets end of spring, or your healthier grocery stores; you want to buy the entire radish with the bottom white portion and the greens up top)
3 tablespoons lemon thyme
2 teaspoons lemon zest
Juice from ½ lemon
½ teaspoon sea salt
3 tablespoons capers
Diagonally sliced diakon radish to garish the plate
Smoked paprika to sprinkle on radish and plate

Heat oil in a medium skillet to high. Sprinkle salt and pepper on salmon and when skillet is nice and hot, add salmon flesh side down. Cook 4 to5 minutes depending on thickness.

Flip skin side down and cook another 4 to 5 minutes. Fish is done when it flakes with fork and is slightly pink inside.

Heat oil in another skillet to medium. Add the rest of the ingredients except the capers (under Diakon Radish Greens), and sauté 3 to 5 minutes until greens are soft.

Place greens on the plate. Lay ½ of the salmon over the top (crumble with goat cheese if you like). Sprinkle with capers and lay out the slices of diakon around the edge of the plate. I like to sprinkle smoked paprika over the diakon radish pieces.

 Tiffany

Copyright Eating For Evolution 2009

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Wake up A recent article by Elizabeth Debold takes a deep look at the ironic fruits of woman’s liberation. As she probes the question, What Do Women Want? Again… it is brought to our attention that woman’s liberation has not, surprisingly, been met with the kind of radical, freeing, burst of joy as expected. Rather it’s taken the opposite toll: Women are actually more unhappy now than they were pre-liberation. Elizabeth presents some outstanding questions, that if we are interested in changing our situation (and not just the situation of women, but the entire situation of the world) we need to inquire them very seriously. Everyone is well aware of the critical times we’re living in, but it seems like a brave few are pulling the heavy many. We’re standing on the front lines of a revolution and half of our species appears to be lost. We’re in the midst of a war against contraction. We’re not only battling against global warming, and economical and healthcare downfalls, but the against the constricting vortex of fear, desire, inertia and ego that birthed many, if not all, of our current woes. What’s worse, we appear to be flirting with the enemy rather than giving it the bullet to the head it deserves. If we can’t even see what we’re fighting against, how can we expect to see what we’re fighting for?

The purpose of EFE (Eating for Evolution) is to fuel cultures burning transformation by changing the way we think and relate to food and eating. As it has been said for ages, how you do anything is how you do everything. When we really look into this, peer into our lives and honestly examine what is going on, we see that the choices we make around food and how we relate to it is a direct reflection of the other choices we make and how we relate to life. We find that indeed nothing is separate. If we continue to relate to food from the position of fear or frustration, reducing food to a dress size or image to fill, then we continue to “flirt with the enemy,” by which I mean we continue to feed inertia, handicap our potential, and disgrace not only our gender, but the human race. Wanting to have a fit body is not a bad thing, the problem comes when it becomes our sole motivator, when we become blinded to bigger, much more important, issues at hand.

However, that isn’t to say it is all fixed. We can, in any moment, choose to participate in the greatest, grandest Purpose of all. We just have to pay attention, because the sneaky thing about this war is that it isn’t visible, at least not in the sense that we’re use to. It isn’t like a physical war for freedom. There are no marches, no arrests. There are no radical protesters, women breaking out of the social norm standing on the streets raising their voices to echo the passion in their hearts. No, this is a silent war that challenges us to live deeper, meaningful, radically purposeful lives. Without the cultivation of greater depth we are like blind, weaponless soldiers standing in the middle of the battle field.

Women of today, where are we? It’s time to open our eyes sleeping beauties. There’s a war going on and we’re all desperately needed.

Amber

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I was talking with nutritionist Becky Hellerstein today and what came through so clear was this: Often times when our actions don’t line up with what we profess to believe in, we have not taken the time to really look at, and take responsibility for that lack of integrity. We continue to identify with the part of us that “intends” to do this or that, all the while our actual actions are moving us further away from the “intention” or ideal.

It would be good to start with defining what “intention” means. It terms of what we are looking into in EFE (Eating For Evolution), we’ll define intention as movement or action towards that which one “intends.” Its not just thought, its action.

So it really hit me,  if I intend to do something, then I am lining my actions up with that… or I have to face the fact that I really don’t “intend” what I thought after all.  It was actually liberating to face into this! It clears up confusion, and I can see that it is darn near impossible to truly move forward unless I acknowledge where I really am. This goes for our relationship with food, or anything else in life.

I left our conversation with an expanded perspective on my behavior, and a renewed motivation to face into the truth that can only be told by my actions.

~Tiffany

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about the “energetics” of the food that you are about to eat.

I interviewed Steve Gagne today; author of Food Energetics. We will post this interview soon on the Eating For Evolution site. book_cover_10-2008

He has studied foods impact on culture and cultures impact on food for over 30 years.

What most impressed me was this concept: Take a minute to consider what this plant or animal is about, how does it grow, what does it do, how does it interact with its environment? What does it embody? And then what does it in turn impart on you.. the eater?

Indeed what we eat becomes part of our very being, or matrix. It is interesting to consider that the “energetic” of what we eat imparts a signature of sorts upon our very Being.

So within the context of Eating For Evolution I would like to delve into this: What foods actually serve, by their innate nature, to power to evolution of consciousness itself. I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

Warmly,

Tiffany

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gmc0106lI’ve been contemplating the difference between “breaking habits” and “unpacking habits.” When I think of “breaking habits” the first thing that pops into my mind is effort. Everyone knows it takes effort to break habits, even small ones. I dread the struggle of having to give up something that I enjoy and upon this thought I anticipate failing to succeed. But, as I set my intentions of living for higher purposes I can see there is no way around it, old habits must be broken. Or do they?

I think the difference between breaking habits and unpacking habits is more than a matter of vocabulary choice. The phrases in themselves define the relationship one has to the habit. “Breaking” is correlated with effort and implies something negative; “I must change something bad about myself.” Whereas “unpacking” is somewhat neutral, and furthermore, its something we do it we want to get to “the goods.” Like when you are moving: If your moving experience is anything like mine you underestimate the time needed to pack and then just end up tossing everything in bags and boxes without thinking twice. Then when it comes time to unpack you see what it is you’re holding onto, perhaps it’s something you haven’t seen in years and completely forgot you had. Unpacking habits is the same thing. It allows you to look at what you’re dealing with. It is effortless.

The most amazing thing I’ve experienced with unpacking habits is that by merely looking at them, for just seeing them as they are, gives me distance from them. It automatically objectifies them, that is, I can see them as something I do rather than something that defines who I am. We can’t change what we aren’t aware of, but when we become aware of something, that awareness alone relinquishes us from whatever it is, allowing us to transcend.

So how does this relate to food? No doubt we all have habits when it comes to food, some very obvious, others not so much. If we set our intentions to cultivate a higher relationship to food we must unpack our habits and look at them, transcend the lower ones that create inertia and keep our attention on the higher ones that are beneficial and serve to really sustain us and the world in which we live.

As we begin to grapple with our intentions and desire to have a more Purposeful relationship to life we inevitably confront our habits and conditioning. It is only when we face everything, place out attention on that which is higher, that we can release that which no longer serves a higher purpose.

-Amber

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