In today's day and age we are made to believe that if we have a symptom, like heartburn or a stomach ache, that we have a problem. Although these ailments can be frustrating, they are at the same time trying to convey information to you. When we can take a step back and analyze our symptoms and actually welcome them as a message, we can move forward to find a solution. For example, let's take a look at heartburn. Heartburn is usually caused by one of four ways:
2. Fast eating
3. Consuming too much food in one sitting
4. Poor food quality
It's important to note that the latter two are usually a result of the first two. So when you take a step back and start to analyze your symptom of heartburn, which areas in your life may be contributing to it? Maybe right now you have been stressed about money because the economy isn't doing too well so you work long hours trying to prove that you are worth keeping around. You take little time for yourself throughout the week to do anything that satisfies you, let alone to eat a proper meal, and when you do eat, it's in front of a computer screen where you sit stressed out looking at your next big project deadline. As you eat in front of the screen, you are completely unaware, not present, and more likely to consume too much food. You choose meals that are quick and that can be eaten very quickly (which adds to the stress response you're already in). And as we've learnt about stress, let me remind you, that blood is shunted away from the gut towards the extremities to prepare the body to fight or flee. So now not only are you in a stress response from being stressed about money and work, you add to it by eating way too fast, way too much, and choosing poor quality foods to satisfy your need for speed, to be a workaholic.
Now let me ask you, is heartburn the problem? Is heartburn the problem, or is it a solution to a bigger problem? Maybe heartburn, in this case, is a solution or the cure to fast paced living. Maybe fast paced living, being a workaholic, not taking time for yourself or your family is the problem and not the heartburn.
Maybe you've had digestive issues for the past week. Look back to a week ago and see if anything has changed in your life, not just diet but life. Maybe a week ago you got into a fight with your spouse and haven't reconciled it inside of yourself even though you both said you were over it. Maybe you are still holding onto some unforgiveness. Unforgiveness creates bitterness, strife, and anxiety which quickly turns into a full blown stress response if we don't tackle it head on. So your digestive issues are not the issue, maybe unforgiveness is the issue and digestive complaints are the cure to tell you that you're harbouring feelings of unforgiveness that will always lead to unwanted symptoms.
These are just two example of how life and diet are so closely related. When you are dealing with a symptom, just know that it is the cure for something else. Something else is going on in your inner world that is manifesting as symptom. Start to go Sherlock Holmes on your symptoms an do some self discovery when something comes up instead of self medicating. Don't put a bandaid on the cure to the real issues. Am I saying that every upset stomach is caused by resentment or strife, no I'm not. You could have eaten a bad piece of sushi and now you have a tummy ache, that's completely different and not what I'm talking about. When a symptom persists or is chronic though, we need to take a deeper look as to why it's there.
Slowing down and listening, and becoming in tune with our bodies, is one of the most powerful weapons we have. No one knows your body better than you do, so it's high time you start listening and discovering what you are trying to relay to yourself.