Hello March!

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I can't believe it is March already!  I am indeed ready for it as I am sure you all are too.  Spring is just around the corner.  The sun, warmer weather, budding flowers…will all be appreciated. I can't even imagine how ready you snowbound people must be!   I have three more weeks of school!  I am excited.  A less regular schedule while I do my internships will be welcome.  Some time to read a real book rather than home work….At the end of it all I am planning a vacation with Tom to Northern California.  Mendicino is on my bucket list and I am finally going to get there! 

We are going to spend a few days just exploring, hiking, enjoying being outside with no schedule and no obligations.  I have decided after 4 years that I am going to eat some fish!  In terms of nutrition, fish has a lot to offer you.  I have been thinking about it for a few months, but have not yet taken the plunge.  What better place to give it a try then on the coast where the catch will be so fresh!  I'll let you know how it goes.  I will still eat primarily plants but may add some fish a couple of days a week.  Based on my studies in Macro I have decided to try to eat less milk/yogurt/cheese and baked goods.  Although I don't eat much bread, there are many more grains out there and I am going to focus on them.  I also naturally eat less dairy in the summer when the heat makes it not as palatable for me.  It is all an experiment.  Interestingly, Macro encourages that kind of experimentation.  Most people are really not in tune with how food makes them feel.  We just eat and go on our way and don't make the connection between our food and our moods, emotions, and aches and pains.  Some small changes can make a big difference.  So I'll do a little experiment and see how it goes….

Michio Kushi was a leader of Macro here in the US

Michio Kushi was a leader of Macro here in the US

One the first day of our Macro program, we learned about Macrobiotics' 10 steps to strenthening health.  We were encouraged to find one or two to adopt these next few weeks.  The classic overachiever that I am, I wanted to do all of them.  Clearly that is not possible for now, but I do aim to get these all into my life over the next 6 months to a year.  

  1. Sit down to regular meals every day. Even sit down to eat snacks. Try to eat at the same times every day to regulate your physical, emotional, and mental cycles. 
  2. Eat slowly and chew your food well.  This helps you digest better and helps prevent overeating. 
  3. Stop eating three hours before bedtime.  Your body cleans and repairs itself at night while you sleep.  Having an empty digestive system helps this process. You will sleep more deeply and give your digestive system a rest while you sleep. 
  4. Eat grains and vegetables with every meal. Plan your meal around grains rather than around protein.  This does not mean bread or pasta all the time, but a variety of whole grains.  Brown rice, barley, oats, polenta, millet.  There are many to chose from. Eat at least 1 vegetable dish with every meal, including breakfast. 
  5. Regularly include a variety of natural, healthy foods, into your diet. Beans, white meat fish, fruits, nuts, seeds, vegetables, healthy snacks and sweets. 
  6. Have 1 - 2 bowls of vegetable soup every day. Use a variety of vegetables and change the combinations often. Use grains and beans.  Add noodles, bread and fish occasionally. Add miso for its healing properties to aid digestion and circulation. 
  7. Give yourself a hot body scrub.  Using a washcloth dipped in hot water, scrub your body all over until your skin is pink. This improves circulation of blood and lymph, and gives you energy. 
  8. Walk 30 minutes every day. If you can't do it all at once, just break up into increments you can manage. 
  9. Wear pure cotton clothing next to your skin. Synthetics carry a static electrical charge that increases imbalances in the body. 
  10. Surround yourself with green plants. Plants filter and clean the air you breathe. They help you feel bright, positive and energetic.  The kitchen, bedroom and bathrooms are most important. 
A beautiful plant I had in my bedroom, that sadly I overwatered and it died!

A beautiful plant I had in my bedroom, that sadly I overwatered and it died!

I have adopted the warm body scrub.  At least for this week!  I am amazed at the dead skin that comes off, and how smooth my skin feels. It takes about 10 minutes.  Just warm up the bathroom,   fill the sink with hot water, and start scrubbing, rewarming the cloth after each area. Be sure to do your feet, in between your toes, your fingers, your face.  It feels amazing.  I have stopped the dry brushing which I have learned can be drying for the body.  This warm, wet process seems better.   So there is the Marco lesson for today!  I am off to meet some friends for church!  Have a good Sunday, and celebrate March!