Why I eat greens for breakfast, lunch and dinner
It’s hot and dry, I’ve just finished a 26 mile bike ride before teaching my Saturday morning yoga class and I’ve got twenty minutes to refuel and refresh – what to do? A green juice of course! Now that the spinach and lettuce is bolting it is perfect fodder for my Breville juicer. And in goes an entire head of bok choy (I love that no matter how much I chop it back, it just keeps growing). Add a lemon and a few stalks of celery and I’ve got an instant deep-cell refresher that will get me through my class feeling as crisp and vibrant as the greens I just drank!
Greens for lunch?
By mid day I’m feeling peckish. Actually, to be honest, I’m ravenous. I love visiting the Blue Hill Farmer’s market after I teach, and though I am magnetically attracted to Millbrook Company’s gluten free (but not sugar free) brownies, I try to eat greens first. I like to mix it up, maybe a half pound of Horse Power Farm’s snap peas, a bag of Noah and Robyn’s mesclun lettuce from Living Branch Farm, a cucumber from Blue Zee Farm . . . All these fresh local organic green vegetables were grown in spectacularly mineral-rich soil, and I know they are well worth the price. When I eat greens like these, I’m getting exactly what my body needs to stay cool, calm and hydrated for the rest of the day. By filling up on these much needed alkalizing vitamins and minerals I’m counter-acting the natural acidity and depletion that comes with my typical summer excess of exercise and, yes, gluten-free brownies.
Eat greens for dinner too
Because really, you can’t over do it. My favorite way to make greenery into a filling dinner meal is to spend a few minutes foraging around the yard and garden with my girls until we have a mess of lettuce, sprouts, tender kale, dandelion greens, lambs quarter and sorrel. We bring it inside and wrap it up tightly into a few of Maine Sea Coast Vegetable’s raw nori sheets with a simple salad dressing like tahini and lemon juice, or even just a little salt and olive oil. Yum.
Nature says eat greens
Nature is giving us exactly what we need, right when we need it. These long, hot summer days can leave us feeling withered and depleted if we don’t refill with the natural nutrition and hydration of fresh, dark, leafy greens. And according to Ayurveda, the bitter taste that is prevalent in dark greens is perfect for neutralizing excess Pitta – the dominant dosha of summer.
Try it for yourself. Eat greens for three days, and report back. I’ve never met a human or animal that didn’t enjoy chewing the tender ends of grass . . . and feel better for it.
Agni is the power that creates form from the formless. It is the light of life and the fire of transformation. It is the intelligent spark that illuminates every part and particle of our being, and indeed of the entire universe. Currently Agni is the heat of summer that is burning my garden to a crisp and making me want to melt into my kid’s kiddie pool – even though it is filled with all kinds of weird floaty things. Agni is powerful stuff. It is the stuff of creation and dissolution. It is the beginning and the end. It is to be honored and not to be messed with – too much. The bright side of Agni – literally – is the illuminative, refined quality known as Tejas. Tejas is the light of Agni that clarifies our vision, that both reveals the intricacies, individuality and beauty of the parts as well as the unity and cohesion of the whole. It is the ability of each cell to know its own job and to recognize that it is part of one body. It is our own ability to discern one thing from another and to choose in the highest. The peril of Agni gone wild is that by the burning light of a raging bonfire we only see differences. Discernment turns to judgement and separation. In the heat of transformation we feel alone and uncertain, we forget our true identity – the one that is made of star dust, and the light of the stars. The one that dances for the sheer delight of it, leaping like the flames that turn form back into the formless. So the next time you feel hot, hot tempered or hot headed, the next time you feel certain that you are not that,that that is not you, soften your eyes, let them fuzz over a bit until the bright light of separation begins to blur. See how the spark of life unites every part and particle and every form of creation. Then sit back in the kiddie pool and recognize that the spark is in all those floaties too. If you have a beer, go ahead and drink it.