Today a new patient came in and as we were discussing her diet she said “and the salad had red pepper on it—not organic—I know…” and then in a judgmental way, “…loaded with pesticides!”
I’ve been there in that self-judging space around food, and specifically organic food. How perfect I thought, a topic to write about. And we’re in the Thanksgiving season. Perfect timing.
So here is where the work was for this patient, and perhaps for you too, being the health conscious person you are: transcendence, for your food, for your thoughts, for your life—for any situation you find yourself in.
Many years ago I was on a road trip and I had an experience like the woman above that had such an impact on me I was forever changed. Living in Seattle made it super easy for me to eat just about everything as organic. So there I was, peeling an orange in the car one day and thinking, “Hmm, this is not organic.” As I started eating the orange, I could feel this reluctance from deep within me that I was eating something that was not good for me, like I was eating poison. That was my wake-up call and I only had to learn that lesson once: give thanks for my food, any food, and accept it as the wonderful gift of abundance that it is. I have been doing that ever since, regardless of the source. There are people living off of land fills in Calcutta. Organic is not in their vocabulary.
Say you are pregnant and craving red meat. In this case that meat is pure medicine for your body. You are rushed and do not have access to some organic grass-fed beef and give in to eating a burger from a drive through window (but not the bun, of course!). So what are you going to do?
I heard one of those many Buddha stories once, something about the Buddha eating whatever was put in front of him. (How do we know, right? He lived so long ago…) The point being that we should appreciate the gift of any food—including that non-organic turkey that your friends are serving up!