Easter is such a great family weekend and fantastic fun for the kids with lots of chocolate!
The first holiday of the year even if we are subject to changeable weather and Bank Holiday traffic. A blessed day off from the Sunday supermarket shop as most of them are closed.
Easter is the main festival and a holiday in many parts of the world.
Including a 40 day preparation starting on Ash Wednesday 6 weeks before.
For the faithful this used to be a month with no meat or even animal products like eggs and milk. In Greece this is still the case today - people give up animal products or at least a token gesture such as coffee or chocolate.
For a long time these traditions have waned in the West. But recently there has been a resurrection as we rediscover the benefits of intermittent fasting.
Veganuary is a great example where people go meat free for a month and has been amazingly popular this year.
Also the more regular Meat Free Mondays. Others are becoming flexitarian or taking on fasting diets like the 5:2 diet. As we experience the health benefits of giving ourselves a rest from rich and high calorie food.
There is also the realisation that eating too much meat is actually harming our health in the long term.
So intermittent fasting not only has health benefits but it gives us a chance to create new habits. Also to get familiar with different ways of cooking and shopping. After following Veganuary for a month a lot of people just keep going or try more flexitarian way of eating. You also feel the benefits and go off certain types of unhealthy food.
This year Easter or Holy Week started Sunday 25th of March. This is the last week of lent before Easter. It’s not too late to enjoy a wonderful meat free week before Easter. It’s a bit like joining a marathon for the last few miles and getting the same applause as you cross the finishing line.
This weekend is Palm Sunday so its highly relevant to think of palms particularly the coconut one. In Ayurveda this is called ‘the tree of life’ nearly every part of the coconut is good for you.
So meat free holy week could start off with a recipe with lots of coconut like my Thai Green Curry recipe. Meat free holy week is a contemporary way to celebrate Easter. We are helping ourselves heal and renew with healthy food.
We help the environment by eating plant based foods and show compassion for intensively farmed animals.
On Thursday is the day of the last supper and Jesus’s betrayal by a kiss. His last message was to love one another. He didn’t say get me a good lawyer or everyone for themselves. He demonstrated forgiveness and instead said love one another.
This is such a powerful message for the present day. The Easter fasting is a great way to improve health – AND also forgiveness. Our pain and resentment often does little to affect the perpetrator.
It does however harm us by reducing our immunity and means we can’t relax. Deep seated anger has also been linked to more serious chronic disease.
Forgiving is difficult if we try and rationalise it. An easier way is just to send love to the person or situation. It doesn’t mean thinking that was ok do it again.
But if you love them then forgiveness is a by product it’s a sort of a buy one get one free deal. We can’t help forgiving a naughty kitten or puppy because we love them so much!
In Ayurvedic medicine the greatest tonic is just to love yourself. This means you forgive yourself too. This has a tremendous power as you gently release the past. It strengthens you and gives the determination to eat healthy food.
Easter starts on Ash Wednesday this is the start of 40 day period of lent. It is a reminder too that we are ash and one day we will return to that state. It can be a depressing thought, but on the other hand a liberating one. To make the best of our healthy days we have. Not to dwell on the past we are not traveling in that direction, but to a healthy future.
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