On Wednesday evening it was time to gather around our kitchen table at The Farm Wholefoods with wellness coaches Kelsey Hendrickson and Tammy Shemesh. Kelsey Hendrickson is a certified yoga instructor and Tammy works 1-1 as an Eating Psychology coach to transform your relationship with food and body image.
These two lovelies had us relaxed and enjoying the whole experience. The table was set, adorned with flowers and candles and we were seated amidst displays of delicious snacks and warm, colorful, scented teas. Beautiful Australian dried mango, fresh mango, nuts, berries, coconut, berry and lemon ginger tea, all from our farm pantry of course!
The girls began by asking us to name our indulgences and consider whether we were fast or slow eaters, this began the first step. Becoming aware of the frequency of our mindless eating. Most of us ate too fast, on the go, and often found ourselves eating far more than we needed or desired; all because we were not fully conscious in the time we were eating.
Kelsey ran us through some breathing exercises before we ate. Why? To slow us down and get ready to eat.
“We tend to think of food as GOOD food or BAD food but really what we should be thinking “Am I eating stressed or or relaxed and present”.
Tammy went onto explain that ideally, for optimal digestion we need to be in the parasympathetic zone , where our digestive system is stimulated and ready to go. She mentioned that “Eating under stress we are in our sympathetic zone which interrupts our digestive flow and food potentially becomes near toxic to our bodies” This results include reduced absorption of nutrients and elimination also is reduced.
The whole experience of sitting together in such a lovely atmosphere had us feel the shift needed to move into a more optimal eating mode. The breathing exercises slowed us right down. We then shifted our focus to the sound of eating then as we rolled the sweet mango around our mouths we experienced the sight ,taste, texture and smell . All agreed the experience had us enjoying everything more because using the senses created a vibrancy between ourselves and the food.
We now understand how eating in the right frame of mind contributes profoundly to wellness.
We need, not only slow down enough to know what we are eating but to know how to stimulate digestion to get the maximum nutrition from the food we choose to eat.
Kelsey Hendrickson has created a wonderful retreat center in Govinda Valley an hour south of Sydney in the hills and right near the coast line. It will be held 27-29 November (Fri-Su). Spend a weekend in nature rejuvenating your mind, body and soul. Herself, along with her friend Caitanya, will be teaching twice daily yoga and meditation classes and will be hosting a few workshops and discussions on philosophy topics as well as setting time aside to spend on the beach and walking in the nearby bush lands.
Contact: Kelsey Hendrickson