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Why You Should Eat Like the Ancients

By Heather Smith · April 29th, 2009 · Cravings
About 5,000 years ago, the great saints of India downloaded a complete dietary system that can help you lose weight without eating less, achieve balance and serenity and live a longer life. OK, it sounds like an Acai Berry ad, but it’s actually part of the oldest and most authoritative of Hindu texts, the Vedas.

Ayurveda means “coming from the Vedas” and it’s a system of spirituality, diet and medicine that believes in working with, not against, Mother Nature.

As Patricia Sheerin, a local Ayurvedic practitioner, puts it, “We would not be here without Mother Nature. We owe our lives to her. She’s the big force that stands behind all the mothers. As long as you work in harmony with her, she gives you everything you ever wanted and supports you and nourishes you and loves you. But when you break away from her, it’s just a balancing act.”

On May 2, Sheerin will offer a workshop, “Eating with the Seasons,” that aims to return people to Mother Nature through diet and lifestyle changes.

According to the workshop flier, participants will learn how to manage weight; fight cravings; release toxins, old emotions and patterns of behavior; and increase energy by simple changes in when, what and how they eat.

Sheerin says she lost 40 pounds the first year she followed the Ayurvedic diet. “I didn’t eat any less than I was eating before,” she says. What she did was get back into harmony with nature’s rhythm.

Fortunately, this isn’t as hard as it sounds. It doesn’t require dancing naked underneath the stars or selling your house in the city to move to an organic farm. In fact, it might be as easy as going to Lavomatic for dinner. Unlike complex diets like macrobiotic that are hard to fit into your lifestyle and can wear on even your best friends, eating Ayurvedically is easier to pull off socially. Any restaurant that adjusts its menu to the seasons works. Looking at Lavomatic’s spring menu, with an eye to the ideal Ayurvedic dinner, Sheerin had no problem finding options: The Roasted Carrot Soup, Spring Salad and Grilled Cheese Sandwich.

She explains her choices: “While carrots are a fall food, soup at dinner is always good for digestion. It gives you just enough fuel to get you through until bedtime.”

In a perfect world, dinner should be at 6 p.m., she says. “The Spring Salad would be fantastic, particularly because it has apricots and walnuts in it,” she says. “If someone needed more to work with, they could probably have the Deviled Eggs or Grilled Cheese Sandwich.”

But in an ideal Ayurvedic world, you would have your animal protein at lunch and eat something light at dinner.

PATRICIA SHEERIN will offer her workshop 3-5 p.m. Saturday at Shine Yoga. It costs $30 in advance, $35 at the door. To register, call 513-533-9642.



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