I wanted to take some time and de-bunk the myth that all yogis are or have to be vegetarians or vegans. We’re not. I still love a good burger and think bacon can save almost any dish. And for this Thanksgiving, I’m taking on the task of making my first turkey. It’s a 14-pounder that is currently thawing in my refrigerator.
There is the idea of ahimsa, Sanskrit for non-harming or nonviolence, which some yogis follow in terms of their food consumption. Obviously, the non-harming part means no killing of animals. But it’s not mandatory or a prerequisite to being a yogi.
Now, what I am willing to bet is that yogis eat healthier than the average American. I don’t have any hard numbers to back this up (and don’t feel like digging through a Google search at the moment), but knowing how much a heavy stomach can affect a physical practice tells me that yogis are probably watching what they eat a little more closely. So much of yoga is being aware of your own body, your sensations and your emotions.
Helloooo! When you eat a pint of ice cream (ie. YOUR EMOTIONS), you feel a little sick after the sugar high wears off. And you learn to do that AFTER the yoga class when you know your stomach will have some time to settle down before you hit the mat again. 😉
To be fair, this is probably not exclusive to yoga. Anyone with a regular exercise regimen is already in the mindset of eating better so that they physically feel and look better. And often times, that DOES mean trimming the fat and not going overboard on the meat. It also means skipping white carbs and deep-fried anything and replacing them with healthy veggies.
Trust me. A giant hunk of steak for dinner with heavy starches smothered in butter makes for a disgusting practice the next morning. And it also makes yoga pants fit in a super unflattering way.
So there you have it. And now I’m trying to strategically plan when I can make it to yoga classes over this long weekend so I know when I should avoid heavy foods!