So many of us are juggling the life work balance that perhaps as we near the end of Veganuary our resolve might begin to flag.
So how can mindfulness help?
You might be aware of the how mindfulness has become the latest buzzword and how a great many people seem to be turning to this ancient awareness practice as a way of managing the complex and challenging world we live in. But do you really know what it’s all about?
Put simply, mindfulness is about changing our focus. Constant worries of what we have to do or what we should have done can create a busy mind that leaves little room for creating a healthy nutritious diet. But when we practice mindfulness, we learn to let go of the mind chatter. By bringing ourselves into the moment, we open up our mind space, creating a clarity that allows us to make better and more skilful choices – ones that nourish us in mind and body
Choosing to change our focus away from the mind chatter and onto what is going on in our mind and body in the present moment, slows the release of stress hormones and taps into the more peaceful and relaxed inner state.
When we are working under pressure, feeling stressed out and overwhelmed, the body produces hormones that actually increase our desire to eat sugary, starchy food. This response (‘fight or flight’) tells our body that we need extra energy (food) to cope with our ‘dangerous’ situation. When we practice mindfulness we learn to listen to our body, we become aware of the signals and can change our focus. In this case to carry on eating what we know is best for us and the planet.
Some of the other benefits of mindfulness include:
- Lower blood pressure – reduced risk of heart disease
- Reduced cholesterol and blood sugar levels
- Stronger immune system
- Reduced muscle tension
- Reduced Stress and anxiety levels ~ mental health improved
- Increased clarity of thought, problem solving and decision-making skills
- Increased strategic and creative thinking
- Increased patience, understanding and compassion
It can even slow-down premature aging — no wonder mindfulness has been embraced by so many people. Just a few minutes a day, and we could all be enjoying our resolution to be vegan. Who knows, you might even decide to stick with it for 2016 and beyond!
Veronica Winterbourne is the creator of The Evolutionaries Mindfulness and Meditation programmes. As a government-approved healthcare professional, Veronica has been utilising mindfulness in her work as a humanistic psychotherapist for more than 20 years. To find out more about the programme, visit: