Food and Healing: Regenerating the BodySoul

I’ve come back to the kitchen, a pen in hand. 

Not that I ever really departed—it’s the heart of the home, and a space where I regularly spend a couple hours of the day. As a cook, the kitchen has long been my primary atelier, especially back in the days when I worked as a private chef, but overall my emphasis has been on simply creating beautiful, delicious nourishment for family and friends. Yet as the Great Wheel turns and my work evolves, lately I find myself once more interacting with food as a primary touchstone. 

I penned more than a few posts in the past for the Soul Artist Journal regarding the soulful kitchen, the grace of the table, food sustainability, and similar themes. Curiously, I’ve written very little about food for TendingSacred, partly because when I closed the cover on the SAJ, I launched this column as an exploration of “a healer’s path”—and my journey as such wasn’t actively about food, at least not with clients.

Since the launch of my Evolutionary Health & Embodied Soul signature coaching program—a core segment of which centers on my “Evolutionary Shift” to heal the body, restore the gut biome, and rewire the brain—I find myself working again with food as medicine. Shifting one’s biochemistry through what we eat (or don’t) is a primary way we support our healing, along with becoming ‘clear’ in tissues and blood, emotions, mental outlook, and even energetic and spiritual dimensions. 

While I wrote in April’s post (“Becoming Clear: Focusing the Light”) that after ten years of embracing soulful nourishment as the core of my work I was now passing the baton, I realize that I’m not quite doing that. Yes, my refocused purpose is upon helping others become clear to fully embody their soul work, but I am aiding them in that process by focusing upon soulful nourishment in the most literal, practical, every day manner: healing with food.

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I’ve long held the spiral labyrinth to be a very apt metaphor for the human journey. Used for ages as a physical tool for meditation, contemplation, even divination, a seeker holds his or her query in mind and then walks slowly and mindfully along the cochlear path, following the twists and turns, a step at a time. Upon reaching the hub or centre, an answer is often clear.

Standing at the threshold or entrance—or even at the centre point—the actual route cannot be determined by observation or planning. Instead, we simply follow the path, one foot leading the other, able to see only what’s directly ahead before the track loops back again. This is quite different than a maze where one wanders around lost, repeatedly encountering an impasse; in a labyrinth, there are no dead ends, the serpentine path always leads to the centre… and back out. 

Spiraling into the heart

As I follow my own spiraling footpath into the heart and back out again with what I offer to the world, even as little as six months ago I could not have foreseen that I would return to actively working with food as medicine (albeit in an entirely new way than previously).

I’ve shared in a couple episodes of Embodied Soul Podcast that my personal odyssey with food and health has constituted two and a half decades of learning, experimentation, and ongoing evolution. From macrobiotic and 5 Element theory to Ayurveda, from a high-protein diet to stabilize blood sugar woes to 100% raw & living foods (vegan), from restoring the gut biome to energetic (‘bioforce’) nutrition, the synthesis of that journey–including rebuilding myself inside and out from a dramatic healing crisis in 2016—is what I now share with clients in my signature coaching program.

As I’ve often posited with soul work, the personal eventually becomes transpersonal

Here I am, back in the kitchen, continuing to explore and fine-tune elements of my own healing diet—such as intermittent fasting, experimenting with supplements, further emphasizing adaptogens and plant medicines—while guiding clients into similar realms of transformation despite that most of them are not dispositioned as cooks. 

Even better, they are now reaping unexpected, unimagined results… and eating dandelions.

A few favourite adaptogens… allies for health and well-being

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What we eat matters. Deeply. Not simply for how it was raised (whether animal or vegetal) and larger questions of integrity—factors such as whether an ingredient is seasonal, local, organic versus conventional, etcetera—but for the direct effect food has upon our being, from a cellular level to emotional… even spiritual.

As I’m teaching those in the Evolutionary Health & Embodied Soul program, when we shift our biochemistry in a positive, healthful fashion, we begin to experience a harmonic realignment in other areas of our life, as well. Most of the clients I’m currently working with have all dropped ten pounds or more in just a few weeks, despite that my approach isn’t a diet in any traditional sense and weight loss wasn’t their initial intention (especially the men), and most felt they were “healthy enough.” Their intent was simply to start getting clear so that they might fully embody their unique soul work in the world—or continue trekking the uncharted wilds of discovering what such work might be.

One by one, as my clients disembark from the glucose & insulin rollercoaster, they feel their energy levels soar and become stable, notice their very thoughts becoming clearer (as they stop feeding their brains sugar) while seeing a larger picture—it’s a shift from the primal limbic brain to the more evolved neocortex, simultaneously generating new neural pathways. The major shift I assured them they would experience if they dove fully in is now manifesting. And it’s deeply gratifying… for all of us. 

The other day, one of those clients wrote me an email full of gratitude and generous words, including, “Your course has been the most empowering thing I have ever given to myself. It/You have brought such a sweet connection of self love and nourishment for my bodysoul…”

So often I feel like the luckiest person around, working with a group of courageous, beautiful souls, each seeking to become ALL they can be in life. We’re deepening into rich relationship with each other, getting clear, healing the bodysoul, and becoming tribe

Synthesizing what I’ve learned on my own journey of healing, working specifically with food as medicine, I’m boldly teaching clients how to regenerate the body—through repairing the microbiome, detoxifying and rebuilding their brain, AND restoring the biofield (the energetic template for health). Fortunately for them, it’s truly possible to achieve this in a greatly reduced time frame versus the two years it took me as I stumbled along intuitively, guided by the plants and a crazy healer, slowly figuring out how to put the pieces together. 

Wild, foraged dandelions… with ewe’s feta, blueberries, and toasted pumpkin seeds

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Yet here in the kitchen, where I’m simmering bone broth, making ghee, or grating fresh turmeric and ginger for non-dairy ‘golden milk’ (a powerfully healing, anti-inflammatory tonic), the wider lens I’m holding is with an eye towards soul. Even the ways I’m teaching clients to rewire the brain via biochemistry, microbiome, and plant medicines, is not simply to unravel the knots of trauma and PTSD (which we can actually do!), but ultimately to generate a spiritually aware, sensory, and beautiful connection with life… and the Soul of the World. 

Plenty of people out there can tell you how to lose weight, go gluten-free/Paleo/”keto”, or whatever, but they are not doing that with two decades of experience as a healer, body-centered therapist (trained in somatic resolution of trauma), and soul-based coaching… AND as a French-trained chef gone renegade healthy. Nor are they carrying the very key pieces of quantum/bioforce energy and the human biofield—the missing link in optimum health. 

Honestly, I don’t know anyone else who is framing health in quite this way and teaching all these components: physical (diet, biochemistry, microbiome, brain), a non-toxic & nourishing lifestyle, the energetic/quantum (bioforce, biofield), “green” (plant) medicine, microbial intelligence, AND soul (worldview, beliefs, Earth medicine, belonging and purpose). The synergistic combination is what makes Full Spectrum Healing so powerful and empowering. 

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Sharing from my own experience, one of the things I repeatedly impress upon my coaching clients is that the more we get clear—saying YES to our personal, soulful evolution rather than NO as most people are doing consciously and unconsciously—then more does the Universe support our process of emergence. 

You cannot really heal or evolve to the next level if your body and brain is toxic, or trapped in the ‘fight or flight’ response. And so, still looking towards soul, we begin with food: emphasizing nutrient-dense, “real” foods like our grandparents ate while reducing junk, sugar, excess carbohydrates, and whatever doesn’t support our highest healing and evolution. As we slowly, steadily clean our house/sacred vessel, not only do we begin to feel better and think more clearly but we find ourselves experiencing new levels of energy, inspiration, and insight. It’s an upward, positive feedback loop: the healthier and clearer we become, the more are we inspired to continue making changes (including lifestyle and balance) that further support the ongoing shift. 

“In loving the spiritual, you cannot despise the earthly,” remarked Joseph Campbell, the noted mythologist. I agree whole-heartedly, not only in terms of our soulful connection with the ‘more-than-human’ world but for the common split I see so often: people pursuing a religious or spiritual path via meditation, Eastern practices, or New Age beliefs, yet they are profoundly unhealthy and disconnected from the very “Higher Self” they’re seeking to connect with—neglecting, even abusing, and slowly poisoning the body. In this widespread separation of spiritual and earthly, there is a very pronounced disconnect in effect, and thus I’ve long held that a balanced spiritual path must include the corporal and earthly to become an embodied spirituality, versus the typical transcendental, disembodied approach. 

Does it seem counterintuitive, or somehow un-spiritual, that the soulful journey is supported (or detracted from) by what’s on your plate? 

Fresh basil pesto in process

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Repeatedly I’ve written and shared that we live in an emergent Universe where all things are becoming. That includes us, along with the unique, yet-to-be manifested gifts that each individual soul is here to bring.

In every moment, as we inhale and exhale the universal breath, we actively participate in the creation process… consciously or not. From thoughts to our actions, we have unimagined power over our health—the responsibility for which lies solely in our own hands, for we are most certainly NOT prisoners of our genes and DNA, as the new bioscience research of epigenetics reveals. Truly, the environment we create, both outer and inner (including nutrients) determines almost everything, and we are aided in our evolution by plants and microbes that play a key role in unlocking optimum health… and soul power.

The vast majority of people don’t realize that humans are actually super-organisms: composed of trillions of microbes which FAR outnumber our actual human cells and DNA, a ratio of nearly ten to one by most estimates. This strangely makes us something other than ‘human’ in the way that most people perceive themselves. Moreover, in a germ-obsessed, overly sterile culture—we’re actually making ourselves sicker by a “war on germs”—what we feed the microbial, “cellular collective of ourselves” matters deeply for our overall health. The gut biome is essential to our overall immunity. Thus we’re back to food as the primary building block of transformation… even for soul work, because the bodysoul is our vessel. Beyond our Western neurosis over fats, carbs, and proteins, the optimum foods are those that support our microbiome and deliver the key nutrients we need (a healthy gut biome helps provide these too); moreover, food that is fresh and alive—still possessing a high degree of bioforce (prana, chi, shakti)— also supports our very human electrical field (HEF)/biofield. 

Who we truly are is pure wellness. Inside each of us is a radiant, clear, powerful being who is intimately connected to the Larger Story. We have only to figure out how to support that emergence.

I fuse vibrant health and soul, and my work these days is to help people get clear. Gathering together the many separate threads which together form the tapestry of Full Spectrum Healing—including what the plants and microbes have taught me—I am teaching clients how to weave those into evolutionary health.

Change is uncomfortable. Because of that, almost everyone is still saying NO to their personal evolution and deeper soul calling in the world, stuck in inertia, comfortably or not. Evolution NEVER happens in the status quo, it occurs at the fringes—the one percent versus the ninety-nine percent.  

The one percent comprise the ‘evolutionaries’: those who will not only transform themselves for the better but, in doing so, also change the world. 

As a healer and evolutionary guide, I create the space (program/course) and YOU step into it and do the work—because ultimately, even with a coach for guidance and support, it’s YOU that changes your life and emerges into the soul-powered, utterly vibrant, new you that already exists inside. But I only hold space for those who are willing to dismantle ego and evolve in service to the world—for this is one of the keys that delivers results and success.

I tell people who are interested in working with me that my advice may not always be comfortable but it will get results, beginning with their very cellular makeup and rippling out to their entire worldview and soul purpose. 

We cannot put a price on health—it is priceless, as anyone knows who has lost it, even briefly. While it’s true that I am not cheap to work with, I ask, what are your current options and choices really costing you? If you are tired of staying stuck, of saying NO to your health, evolution, and larger purpose in the world, then perhaps it’s time to make an investment in yourself and dive in to the transformation you’re avoiding (or trying to achieve the easy way with half-measures). 

“Only a person who risks is free.” Thus reads the quote by Anonymous on the underside of the cap of the bottle of unsweetened, organic green tea I just opened, and I’ll drink to that. Further, it calls to mind words by Anaïs Nin, “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”

Evolution is a risk. 

For those who are ready, Full Spectrum Healing is an evolutionary leap, and I’m ‘all in’ to help you get clear and embody your soul purpose in the world. Surprisingly or not, we start in the kitchen… or, perhaps more accurately, garden soil. 

Volunteer, local, wild strawberries

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One cannot fathom the Mystery. Apparently I’m not done with soulful nourishment as my work, after all. And how curious that I have spiraled back to my favourite atelier, pounding dandelions into a healing pesto using a green marble mortar and pestle, blending soups, and combining mega-nutrient seed mixes for garnishing and snacks—silently blessing each ingredient, grateful for its fresh goodness and being part of my cellular evolution. 

As I said to my amazing clients on the group video call the other night, sharing words of the poet William Stafford, “Take hope, all ye who enter here.” I’d like to turn that phrase into a decorative sign and hang it in the kitchen.

Gentle reader, what’s on your plate? Do you know where it came from and how it was produced? Perhaps even more importantly, do you know what it actually does for you (and your microbes) on a cellular level, and whether it’s promoting health or detracting from that…? Does it support your evolutionary journey, or keep you stuck in inertia, low energy, brain fog, inflammation, depression, illness and dis-ease?

Here’s hoping that you’ll risk a positive, challenging change in your lifestyle to support your own bodysoul. The choices are infinite, and nearly overwhelming in their sometimes contradictory claims, but even a single step out of your comfort zone moves you closer to the new, vibrant, healthy and soulful you that already exists; the one who is waiting to emerge, and to bring something precious and hitherto unseen to the world. 

Blessed be.

Local bee pollen… a powerful, biogenic superfood

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