(... apparently atop a soapbox. I wrote this initially for a magazine, the topic being Think global and Act local. I thought it would be apropos here.)
When I first began to regularly floss my teeth, I was admittedly close to thirty. One would think that threats from a hygienist wielding a sharp rotating pick might convince me to start flossing, but it didn’t. Rather my leap into responsible dental health was in fact a new sense of self care and awareness. It slowly began to dawn on me that this boring and frankly unappealing task was actually a small labor of love and burgeoning gratitude for the teeth that I had the good fortune to care for.
The expression Think Global and Act Local has been on everybody’s mind, coined and applied to divergent areas of life spanning the environment and even business. Many people are beginning to become mindful of how and when to spend their hard earned dollars, even educating themselves on lowering their carbon footprint. Whenever I hear the rally to switch perspectives in order to understand the impact of the individual, I get downright literal. Past the country, to the town, on the street, at the front door to my house and smack dab, to the mass which makes up the entirety of me. Five foot four and a hundred and something pounds- Local!
I think about the myriad choices that I make for the actual care of this body, my earthly vehicle. Naturally next, I think about eating. Now as a person who has boundless enthusiasm for everything food, I have no problem scaling the highest peaks to achieve some illusory culinary ideal. But I understand that not everybody has the patience or interest for complicated fussy foods which yield little more than a sink full of dishes, a depleted wallet, and maybe even a stress induced headache. Most I know however, would like to feel more energized, maybe fit into a certain too small outfit and let’s admit it, eat more vegetables.
I have one suggestion that could improve people’s health and that is to begin consuming Green Smoothies. The green smoothie is the sleeker, fiber filled, grown up version to the primped up too sweet fruit smoothie. The ingredients are variable to an individual body's needs and to acclimating taste buds. Essentially it is a fruit smoothie which has bred with some good alkalinizing greens like kale, lettuce, parsley, and celery. Because the raw leaves and stalks are all blended up, the mouth and gut do not have to work so hard to digest the foods. Relief! It is much easier to consume an extra two or three servings of vegetables and fruit a day, and the body is actually assimilating the amino acids, phyto-nutrients, minerals, and vitamins. Don’t you feel better already?
The power of the drink is deceptive. Kids love it, in spite of the fact that dark leafy greens are hidden within. Yes it is true that small health issues might resolve themselves, weight might be lost, and one’s outer beauty begin to sparkle. But I think the power of the drink is that it is a signal to the self about deep nourishment. Somehow I feel we have lost connection with that which cherishes life fearing we don’t have time or thinking that care is self indulgent. One change begets another, and the power of reverence wedded to action, cataclysmic. As we come to this cross road and find so many aspects of life in need of healing, I say we raise our glasses to the health of all: our cells, our communities, and our world. Salut!
Basic Green Smoothie:
2 kale leaves, washed and torn
A handful of spinach
1 ripe banana, roughly chopped
1 handful of frozen berries
½ -1 C water/soymilk/juice
1 Tblsp. Of any: Hemp powder, flax seed oil, coconut oil, carob or cocoa powder (optional)
Directions: Most basic recipes call for about 40% greens to 60% fruit. Experiment and see what you like. Many variety of fruits and vegetables can be used, but be aware of vegetables that are too bitter. As well, consider the power of your blender. I put all my vegetables and fruit in first and then add a bit of liquid to start with, jiggling the container every once in awhile to allow the food to come in contact with the blade. Add more liquid if need be, as the mixture begins to break down and you get the desired consistency. Enjoy!