Book Review: Weight Loss for the Mind

I was about to walk out the door and go to a coffee shop to work when I saw a stack of old books in the doorway, all with “healing” in the title, including Bernie Siegel’s “Peace, Love, and Self healing.” I had to stop and take a look since my mom was debating giving these books away. One of the books was “Weight Loss for the Mind,” by Stuart Wilde.

It’s a pretty small, unintimidating book sort of like “The Four Agreements,” or other Miguel Ruiz titles from Hay House. After sitting down with it, I realized I could read the whole thing in an hour and that’s what I did.

I have some strong thoughts about it, since I loved it but also sort of disliked it. I’m not going to say hate since that is too strong of a word.

Anyway, I immediately loved the way the author put some of the ideas about why we feel pain. He says that we feel pain when two parts of ourselves are in contradiction with one another and in order to overcome this we have to learn to accept the contradictions of life without resistance. We can’t expect anything. We just have to roll with it. This was one of the strongest ideas. I mean, most of us who are interested in health know this. It’s sometimes nice to hear others say it in their way.

So that was the main part of the book and he would go into different aspects of healing such as healing confusion, guilt, anger, etc. The book started out well, but as the book went on, I felt this man was contradictory. He said things like, “If your ego acts up, ridicule it.” Or he referred to some people in an example as “twits.” I especially found it off putting when he says he likes to remind his family and partners that “he or she isn’t too vital,” they are indispensable and that there is a “vast field of opportunity lying just beyond the front door.”

He justifies this by saying that he prefers to be detached and doesn’t assign emotion to anyone or anything, even his close family and partners. I thought this was cold. He even has a part of his book where he advertises another one of his books called “The Quickening,” where he uses some kundalini sexual energy exercise that helps you “lace your visions” and is almost guaranteed to work.

I have a vision of who this guy is. Some dude you might catch at a sex party justifying his nastiness as, well, I can’t attach emotion to this or that person. You want to party?

I get where he’s coming from about the not assigning emotions to people so that we stay positive and in control of ourselves, but this way just seems so cold sometimes.
This book has one very good thing to say and that is that we can’t expect anything to happen. We can focus on we want every day but don’t get peeved if it doesn’t happen. We can try our best to plan, but it may not always come to be but you have to be cool with it. Definitely worth the hour I spent reading it.

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Inspirational Netflix Health Documentaries

I was so inspired to watch more documentaries on Netflix after finding some real winners like “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead,” “Food Matters,” and “Food Fight.” So I recently watched “Forks Over Knives,” a movie I had put in my queue months ago, and was pleased with its message. This documentary is informative, useful, and very graphic! I had to cover my eyes while watching some of the bloody operating scenes. They are also very fond of showing people stick themselves with needles. I found that to be disturbing and unnecessary. Not sure what the point of doing that was, maybe to make the viewer feel uncomfortable which lends to the whole uncomfortable feeling one gets when watching a documentary about the way our society is set up around the food and health industry, to ensure that we get sick. The best way to combat this is to get informed about food and eat what is truly healthy and makes us feel our best.

This documentary basically makes the point that since the meat industry has advocated eating meat and dairy, people consume more of these products, and as a result people become more sick and I really love this quote that the documentary points out from Bill Maher when he says: “There’s no money in healthy people. There’s no money in dead people. The money is in the middle-people who are alive, sort of, with one or more chronic conditions.”

Ughh I could get sad about this truth but I won’t. I will just focus on what I like about this documentary and that is the basic message. This documentary advocates a vegetarian and vegan diet and interviews people who have been sick due to eating a primarily American meat and dairy diet, and how they turned it around by eating mostly vegetarian. The answer is in choosing to use forks to eat vegetarian food and avoid using the knife to cut into various meats.

You know I love to hear how being vegetarian is the answer to health issues because I was given crap for being a vegetarian when I first started out at 15. Man have things changed!  I didn’t have information back then. I grew up before internet became common. We didn’t have the internet in my house until my last year in high school! If I wanted information, I would have to go to the library to get books. Now, the internet makes getting information so much easier.

Some memorable quotes from the film are:

“The doctor of the future will no longer treat the human frame with drugs, but rather cure and prevent disease with nutrition,”- Thomas Edison.

“Let food be thy medicine,”- Hippocrates.

Seriously, I get so much of my inspiration from watching Netflix documentaries about health. I have found that I mostly seek out the same information–validation that eating natural food is the real medicine that will heal the world.

Jimmy Dean Commercial: Let’s get out of the dark

They told us in my first Film and media analysis class back in college that we would never be able to watch television and movies the same again. It’s a mixed blessing to say that this is true. I can’t watch media the same anymore without thinking about who made it and for what purpose.

I watch a lot of the Food Network, even if the food isn’t always vegan or vegetarian friendly. I have a dream that one day there will be a vegan or vegetarian show featured on this network or that there would be a health network dedicated to alternative cooking and healing.

Anyway, I’ve had it with the Jimmy Dean commercials advertising meat and dairy breakfasts. That big, round, smug sun just annoys me so much because the character is this phony boss-like dude who acts like it’s so wrong if you don’t eggs, sausage, and potatoes for breakfast every morning.

And they show this commercial on my beloved Food Network so often that I’ve had time to really deconstruct it.

The commercial starts out with a regular Joe getting a box of cereal and milk ready for breakfast when the big sun comes in with his cup of coffee and is like, “Is that going to be enough?” He basically belittles the man’s breakfast choice and offers him this meat breakfast bowl, telling him that he’s “been in the dark for way too long,” not to have known about this choice.

Is it enough to just eat Rice Crispies in the morning? Not necessarily, but it’s TOO MUCH to eat all that heart clogging meat and eggs and act like it’s the norm.

Commercials on television are funded by big money to normalize the population into believing whatever the hell the big money wants people to believe. And what they want more than anything is for us to buy and eat the food that costs so much money to produce–meat and dairy. It’s not that it’s a better or even healthier choice to eat that crap. They don’t care about people, they just want us to buy their heavily funded and mass produced product. This food may not kill you right away but it will clog your arteries as well as your mind.

Don’t get me completely wrong. Big money doesn’t want us to die. They just want us “fat, sick, and nearly dead” so that we are dependent on pills, diets, and easy fixes. So don’t believe the freaking hype about what popular belief says is good to eat and what’s not.

We need to do our own research and use common sense. I think I started eating a little bit of meat after I saw how well the South beach diet worked for my mom back in the day. I was a vegetarian at the time and and the South beach diet advocates eating “protein” every day in the form of meat and cheese. The diet also wants you to avoid fruits because they have too much sugar.
I totally get how the South beach diet works now that I’ve done my own research and didn’t take one book’s advice as the end all and be all of dieting. The South Beach diet doesn’t work because you are eating meat or dairy, it’s because you eat way more vegetables and avoid refined sugars and processed foods.

I used to take what people said at face value. Even packaged labeling is misleading. You have to look at the ingredients on the packaging rather than what it says on the front.

Eating meat and dairy for breakfast every day will make you sick and you will look like a big round planet, like the Sun in the Jimmy Dean commercial.

“You’ve been in the dark for way too long,” says the sun. Don’t believe the hype.
Let’s get out of the dark and use our reasoning and do our own research.

You know what would be enough? Well, in the commercial the poor guy was just trying to have his cereal with toast. Yea, maybe not the most filling or nutritious choice.

What would be a good, healthy alternative to rice Krispies or sausage and eggs?

A RAW VEGGIE AND FRUIT SMOOTHIE.

Throw a few stalks of kale or spinach into a blender with a banana and some coconut water.

Or throw a banana, hemp protein powder (or walnuts and almonds), cinnamon, ice, and water into a blender.

For breakfast, you basically want to go light with food that is easy to digest and will not sit in your stomach all day.
I don’t believe in easy fixes, but it’s almost just as easy to throw a few ingredients into a blender in the morning as it is to throw a frozen, processed dish into the microwave.

We heal ourselves by creating. Cooking and creating our own recipes and meals is creation. Throwing something into a microwave is not. It’s been brewing in my mind lately to challenge what foods are socially accepted as the norm. Commercials like this one light my fire because there are so many people who are conditioned into believing that meat and dairy are the norm and actually good for us, which is why there are so many people who are sick from eating that kind of food.

Yes, let’s get out of the dark and see that eating shakes and smoothies in the morning for breakfast is not that hard and can easily be adopted as a new norm.

It is our responsibility to find out what works for us and what’s really good to eat. We must get out of the dark and see the light when it comes to our health and the future of our society. It’s not too late.