DAY 14 March 13, 2018. A month of working on my wellness.
The Challenge of a Busy Day
I had to run from here to there a bit today. In order to fit in my patients, administrative duties, and family commitments. It was a good day, with the potential for me to get overwhelmed– which I didn’t!. There were challenges; fitting in my workout, meditation, and eating in a way that conveys I care about myself. What are some of the ways you deal with the challenges that come with a busy day (life)? Here’s what worked for me. I got up a little bit earlier (I’m still working on the sleep hygiene piece of the puzzle. It’s not good. I am still averaging just under 5 hours a night) so I could do my typical workout and still have time to get where I needed to go; showered. I prepared and packaged my food the night before. Instead of my usual cooked veggie breakfast, I had a protein shake with gobs of spinach so I still got a good share of veggies to begin my day. One thing about protein shakes before I move on, read your nutritional label. You want the sugar grams to be minimal at best. Most of the expert authors I am reading say it has to be below double digits. Mine has 0 (NICE!) here’s the link in case you are interested. What do you like in your shakes? I throw some cinnamon and spinach in there and it works for me. I wasn’t able to make time for my meditations and I can tell you I missed it. I want to talk more about spinach, so let’s go back to that.
Popeye was on to something
Popeye infamously gained the physical strength he needed to navigate tumultuous relationships (as a mental health professional I would have preferred if he did not use aggression to solve relational problems) by eating his spinach. He chowed that down and we should too! I add spinach to much of what I eat (spinach and avocado are my favorite add-in and add-ons). I always put spinach in my protein shakes; it looks like a Shamrock shake and for whatever reason that makes me happy. I typically also mix it in to my morning cooked veggies. An example breakfast would be spinach, mushrooms, zucchini, tempeh (fermented soy, not into that?- use eggs or crumbled sausage. You do you.), sprinkled with garlic, onion, salt, pepper, and paprika. I throw spinach into soups even when the recipe doesn’t call for it. I find it adds to the flavor and makes the soup hardy. I also often plate other cooked veggies on top of a bed of spinach. Beyond spinach being easy to cook with, incorporate, and filling; it’s packed with good reasons for us to, like Popeye, chow down.
I made this tonight for dinner. Mushrooms, spinach, artichoke hearts (I am really into them lately. Make sure you check the label. One jar I found had 8 grams of sugar. Why do my artichokes need sugar added? ugh-sneaky), tomatoes, red onion, and spiced with basil, oregano, garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.
Spinach is high in niacin (aka vitamin B3, is needed in every part of your body. As a supplement, niacin may help lower cholesterol, ease arthritis and boost brain function) and zinc (you need that for a healthy immune system), as well as protein (One answer to the question: “Where do you vegans get your protein?”), fiber (you need that to keep you regular and pooping), vitamins A, C, E and K, thiamin, vitamin B6, folate, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper, and manganese (I’ll discuss some of these other nutrients in a future blog- I didn’t want to overwhelm you). It’s got good things for every part of your body (and mind too).
Additionally, spinach has an abundance flavonoids and those bad boys act as antioxidants to keep cholesterol from oxidizing and protect your body from free radicals (that’s a good thing. There’s a reason they are free, you get what you pay for in this example.), particularly in the colon (you don’t want free radicals there or anywhere else). The folate in spinach supports a healthy cardiovascular system, and magnesium helps lower high blood pressure, impacts your mood; helping people settle down and sleep. Spinach is good for your overall wellness, studies have shown that it helps maintain brain function, memory and mental clarity.How are you going to get that spinach into your diet and support your wellness by what you eat?
With Love & Gratitude~