Let’s face it—despite what Instagram might have you believe, most of us don’t actually spend hours on end daily creating super delicious and healthy meals. Maintaining a healthy diet is a critical aspect of taking care of ourselves and anyone in this practice will know that finding the time to make meals that are both delicious and nutritious for your health takes some research and practice. With that in mind, we reached out to Natalie Murray, certified holistic health coach from Jamaica, for her view on eating vegan in Jamaica. Here are her tips (and delicious recipes) for bringing the Tropical Vegan Vibe to your own home.
How to plan a healthy vegan menu:
First and foremost, our menus are based upon the Ayurvedic principles of being seasonal, local, and organic wherever possible. We try to incorporate the six tastes from ayurveda as well: sweet, sour, salty, pungent, bitter, and astringent. Outside of those things we strive to create and offer a variety of items that respect that only an individual can really determine what diet is right for their well-being including vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free, grain-free, etc. Whether we're looking at an individual meal, menu, a day of menus, or a week's, we strive for moderation in that there isn’t too much of any one thing, whether it be a grain, protein, dessert, or vegetable.
How food can support a yoga practice:
Food provides a myriad of nutrients and energy for the body to absorb and play with - what you put in is what you get out. What we fuel our bodies with can enhance or detract from our overall performance so it's important to consistently choose healthy choices.
What foods to avoid:
Eating really heavy items like beans before a practice can really weigh you down and give you a slow, sluggish feeling.
What foods to always include:
My Ayurvedic peeps always recommend really simple, light, fresh, and vibrant foods before a practice—think veggie and salads!
How to bring the healthy vegan vibe into your home kitchen:
The easiest way is the silent breakfast - which means taking a meal and eating it mindfully, without distractions. By paying attention to how the food makes you feel, you can really allow the body to absorb and digest but also allow it to guide you as to what it needs for optimal well-being.
Here are a few of Natalie's favorite recipes for getting that Healthy Vegan Vibe a normal practice in your own home.