Journey Back to Me

Lately, I’m been getting my health together. Nutrition is important in any kind of emotional recovery.

I am so elated with my life after leaving my past behind. One of the great things about thinking for your self is that you find your way back to your identity and the real you. When you shed the fear of people from your life, you can soar. I think of SOAR as Survivors Of Abusive Religion.

People from my old life ask me how I’m doing. I’m doing great.

Lately, I’m been getting my health together. Nutrition is important in any kind of emotional recovery. I am learning how to properly feed myself. It seems weird to say that but we’re all a product of our environment. I learned how to cook southern style with all the oil, sweets, fried foods, and veggies cooked to death. During this time of COVID-19, I’m sure everyone is considering what they eat, as well we all should.

My whole food plant-based eating is going well. I’ve even got my husband on board and in the last month I’ve discovered the following.

  1. It’s a myth that you need meat for protein. The differences are in the amino acid profiles. Protein can be taken in without eating eggs and tons of chicken and fish and without the negative effects that go along with animal protein. Instead of meat being the most important thing in your diet, it really should be sparingly or not at all. Our society loves and reveres meat and so the myth persists. Many articles talk about the quality of the protein better in the meat but that leaves out the negative after-effects.
  2. Oils are not necessarily healthy. I used to slather everything with olive oil thinking this was the “healthy” oil. But oil is simply another food that the food industry has promoted just like they promoted “fat-free” junk for years. Now, most people understand that fat is not an enemy. When I first started on this journey I said “no way can I live without oil”. But I’ve done it and my blood vessels have thanked me. We have endothelial cells that line our blood vessels and when we consume oils it not only messes with our gut bacteria but also the function of these vital cells is diminished. ( See this article on the subject).
  3. Fat is not evil. Whole-food fats are necessary for proper body function: nuts, seeds, avocado, nut butter, beans, but not oils.
  4. Keep veggies nutritious. One of my discoveries this month was making sauces out of cashew butter. That’s right. Cashew Butter. Cashew butter can be the base for numerous sauces and salad dressings. These sauces can make any veggie a delicious meal paired with brown rice or sweet potatoes. I use it so much now to make sauces. It is bland on its own, but that’s what’s great. You can make it taste like anything, Italian, Mexican, spicy, sweet–you name it.

Here’s my recipe for Ceasar dressing. It’s a tweak of a Fork Over Knives basic Ceasar Dressing recipe:

2 TBSP Cashew Butter

2 TBSP Red Wine Vinegar or to taste

2 tsp maple syrup ( the pure stuff, not the commerical pancake stuff)

2 garlic cloves ( or garlic powder)

Dijon or brown spicy mustard

Nut milk ( I like Oat milk, but experiment with what works for you)

and salt to taste.

This recipe makes a great creamy salad dressing with a tanginess to it.

Bon Appetit!

Creamy whole-food Ceasar Dressing

Author: Renee

I am an author and a retired minister. My passion is helping others find their sense of self and identity after so many years of losing my own. So often we go to church and are still not aware of our disconnection with our true selves. The person inside that God deeply values. My husband and I have been married for over 30 years and have 3 children. I love gourmet cooking, swimming, all kinds of music, and political and religious discussion- the two things my mom said never to talk about at the dinner table.