“Many people today are depriving themselves of one of the most simple yet profound pleasures of life, the possession of a healthy digestive and elimination system. It is fundamental to our enjoyment of life, for our digestion influences our whole perception and appreciation of life.” Dr. Swami Karmananda
It’s so true isn’t? When our stomach is upset, we are upset. There’s really no way around it. To feel well, a happy belly is key, so allow me to present to you this week’s topic for Wellness Wednesday: the importance of having a happy and healthy digestive system. A simple tip for getting there? Invite raw apple cider vinegar into your life.
I spent most of my young life struggling with stomach issues. After spending a long time convinced I had some kind of psychological disorder (which, of course, can play a part), I finally found my way to a wonderful Naturopathic Doctor, Margaret Schenck, ND, who helped me uncover that I was highly sensitive to garlic. Ouch! I ate a lot of garlic everyday and it turns out it was wreaking havoc on my digestive system and depleting my immune system. No matter how healthy I ate, I would still get sick often. However, after eliminating garlic, that all came to a screeching halt. Life changing indeed!
So where does the apple cider vinegar come in? Well, my quest for optimum health continued, and I decided to try the vegan route as I was being drawn more and more in this direction. Ahimsa, or non-harm, is deeply rooted in Yogic philosophy, and I viewed a plant-based diet as being non-harmful to myself, the environment, and the animals many depend on as a food source. The vegan diet worked well for me, except for one thing. My belly was a bloated, gassy, uncomfortable mess.
This drew me back to an important packet Dr. Margaret had given after my first visit with her that recommended having a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with a glass of water 15-30 minutes prior to eating a meal, as “this stimulates the beginning phase of digestion.” I tried it, and the results were profound. Bloating gone. Gassiness gone (I wasn’t the only one happy about that). Discomfort gone.
Here’s my trick. I only take it in the morning, as carrying a bottle of vinegar with me just isn’t practical. As soon as I wake up, I head to the kitchen for my apple cider vinegar water, which translates to a calm and blissful belly all day long. Turns out, raw (must be raw) apple cider vinegar is bursting with healthful properties, including balancing our body’s pH levels and boosting energy. A simple google search will reveal a wealth of information on this topic.
Our bellies also happen to be the seat of our manipura chakra, our power center. It’s a good idea to take care of it! This is a key zone for generation of good energy and vibrant prana (life force), as it is where our liberating current from below, and manifesting current from above meet. When energetic flow here is optimal, our true power can express itself.
“We have power when we dare to live authentically, when we reach inside ourselves and tell the naked truth.” Anodea Judith
Now of course, this isn’t a miracle cure, and everybody is different. There are many things you can do to make sure your system is functioning optimally. However, raw apple cider vinegar in the morning has done wonders for me which is why I am sharing it with you. It’s simple and easy to add to your life. I am not a nutritionist or a doctor, just someone who likes to share the joy of feeling good with my fellow seekers on the path of wellness.
Be well in your belly. Let your true power shine forth.