• Jasmine Blake Hollywood, MS, HHP

What is Spiritual Wellness? The Food Bond

Updated: Feb 1

Defining Spiritual Wellness


Spiritual wellness is the relationship a person has with the food, that will enable them to come closer to completing their life's purpose. Spiritual wellness can be accomplished by having a bio-individual food bond. According to the 6 dimensions of wellness, spirituality is the one dimension that searches for meaning and purpose. [2]. In the Tantric religion, spiritual wellness is described as mastering thought and connecting to the Causal Body of the 5th dimension (spiritual dimension). [3].


A Nutritionist and their Spiritual Bond to Food


Nutrition practitioners value the relationship between themselves and food. When they do this they are maintaining what society calls a "food bond". Some people actually get sketchy or nervous when they are around nutritionists because they think nutritionists are being judgmental. The truth is nutritionists are not being judgemental. They really just want people to understand the relationship that food has with the body. For that reason, they aim to help people understand the purpose of the food bond and how the food relates to their own body.


In the field of nutrition, the goal of a nutritionist to help clients become aware of their foods. This includes:

  • Knowing the difference between beneficial foods and poor food choices.

  • Thinking positive about the foods they eat.

  • Identifying primary sources of energy.

  • Knowing which foods contain which nutrients.

  • How to emotionally connect to food for a higher spiritual purpose.

Thus, nutritionists teach clients how to make their own bio-individual spiritual connection with food.


Eating is a Spiritual Act


When we ingest food we should appreciate knowing the purpose of why we are meant to eat and drink. It's basic, we are meant to ingest food because it connects our physical body with spiritual purpose. Therefore, eating is a spiritual act. For example, eating nourishes our body with minerals of the earth, and drinking water nourishes our body with a restorative cleansing mechanism. These essential nutrients are placed before us and no one really knows how they came to be, but we need them. Essentially, ingesting foods is meaningful for our survival.


Eating and Dimensions


When we are in great health we keep all the dimensions connected. The dimensions are physical, mental, and spiritual. All these dimensions can be affected by what we choose to eat. For example, when we ingest a poor selection of foods we don't feel so good. Therefore, if eating poorly we feel tired and out of energy, which is physical; we experience brain fog, which is mental; and we are confused as to what we are supposed to do from day-to-day, which is spiritual.


How we feel when we eat is the overall state of our bio-individual spirit. Thus, when we ingest better selections of foods we feel great and are in good spirits. For example, we will have lots of energy, we will experience mental clarity, and we will know exactly what our purpose is. Therefore, the purpose of eating is to nourish our spirit.


Eating to Nourish the Spirit


You know, I love broccoli! When I eat it, I understand that not only does it provide me the energy to live and breathe, but I appreciate the taste as well. Every bite brings me to a place where other things cannot bring me to, and I feel a sense of peace harmony within me. This is because its very existence has meaning. To me, its purpose is to provide my body with a well-balanced structure to enhance longevity.


In a sense, broccoli has its own personality of nutrients. These vitamins and minerals are transferred from broccoli to me through the means of energy. So, I am not afraid to eat it and I'm not intimidated if it tastes different when other people cook it. The fact is, I respect this food for what it does for me and am thankful for it.


The goal is to appreciate the purpose of why we eat the meal, and as we are mindful we will begin to connect to the spirit.

Food and the Energy Connection


When people eat food, it is part of a never-ending cycle of energy provided by this universe. In my example, you can see that when eating food it's recognized as having a special type of energetic connection. This energy cycle connects to us all. [3]. In fact, people take energy in every time they eat, and they release other energy out. Hence, energy is actually never obsolete. The energy just circles around and around, continuing to create life.


Plants as an Energy Source


This cycle of flowing energy is food, as plants are also created from energy and plants are our food. Part of the problem is, is that people are unaware of the value that plant foods provide. First, plants are an additional source of energy that is used to sustain our existence. This means we get energy from the sun, which gives us vitamin D; we get energy from water, which helps us transition energy inside our bodies for utilization; and we get energy from food, which gives us carbs, fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals in order to operate the body.


Second, plants are a primary source of energy, and animal foods are a secondary source of energy. This means that animals eat plants as primary energy (with the exception of carnivores), then convert the energy to make energy for themselves. When we eat animal foods we are technically getting "used" energy and used energy is not primary energy. Also, when eating animal foods we have to use more energy to break these animal foods down. So technically, we get more exhausted when we eat animal foods and get less energy out of animal foods. However, with plant foods, it takes little to no effort in breaking them down and we get direct energy out of them.


Third, with the right combination of plants, we are provided the right combination of nutrients. Plants provide carbs, fats, and proteins. In fact, some plants provide a lot of proteins such as mushrooms, dark leafy greens, beans, and whole grains. Plants also provide essential vitamins and minerals. It is also a fact that plants harvest the minerals from the earth and bacteria and, thus, create vitamins. More importantly, eating certain plants provides us with a direct source of very rare vitamins. For example:

  • Eating the algae-ous plants provides a rare vitamin that is known as B12.

  • Eating dandelion greens and mushrooms provides a rare vitamin known as D2, which converts to D3 in our bodies.

  • Eating colorful plants provides us with the precursor vitamin, that makes vitamin A.

The only other way to get these nutrients is by eating animals.


Building Awareness to Accomplish Spiritual Wellness


We all experience spiritual wellness with the foods we eat, but this does not mean we have awareness. Some of us have complete awareness about foods, while some of us only have some awareness about foods. In other words, we need to train and develop ourselves to appreciate food. Although awareness needs to be developed in most people, awareness can grow in time. [2]. After a while, we can naturally preserve the knowledge we learn about food to evoke our motivation to want to seek nutritious food sources. [2].


Building awareness helps us bond with food and utilize its energy for our life's purpose. Thus, understanding that food is energy and how to get a direct source of this energy is essential to working our way up to absolute nourishment of the spirit. This is when we know we have a bond with our food. Thus, being aware of this bond is a deeper understanding of the interconnectedness of our spirit.


By using awareness to understand the kind of energy that can be provided when these foods are ingested, we can enrich our spiritual knowledge.

References:

  1. David, M. (1991). Nourishing wisdom: A mind/body approach to nutrition and wellbeing. New York: NY. Bell Tower.

  2. Hettler, B. (1976). Six dImensions of wellness model. National Wellness Institute. Retrieved from https://cdn.ymaws.com/www.nationalwellness.org/