Weight Loss Wisdom The Body Knows Best

Meditation & Health No 3 - Table of Contents

Weight Loss Wisdom: The Body Knows Best

Spotlight on Health and Weight Loss

By Joyce Hou, Kari Porter and Ana Ruvalcabq

Eating the right foods in the right quantities is essential for achieving healthy weight loss. Utilizing gentle, holistic methods helps to ensure a lasting result. Listen to your body to choose the food you need, incorporate the simple tips below, and get inspired by two women who lost extra pounds effectively.

Listening to Your Body

Animals listen to their bodies. They know when to eat and when to stop. Babies are similarly in tune with their physical needs. Humans are born in a natural state of wisdom that is forgotten, but which can be remembered by honing our listening skills.

Since November of 2011, I haven’t craved meat – I’ve almost become a vegetarian. By almost, I mean that I’d like to eat a vegetarian diet every day but when conditions don’t allow it, such as when I travel by air and the meals are either chicken or beef, it is fine for me to have bites of meat.

My move toward a vegetarian lifestyle happened naturally after practicing meditation for six years. I’ve learned to listen to my body and trust its messages, and so I wasn’t concerned when meat lost its prominence in my diet.

In hindsight, my body had given me signals for years that some foods didn’t serve me well. I was a sensitive child and various food allergy symptoms plagued me during my early years. In my mid-twenties I underwent allergy testing that determined I was allergic to many environmental stimuli such as dust, cigarette smoke and pollen. I was pleased to be told that the results indicated I was not allergic to any foods. However, those results proved to be misleading.

In the summer of 2011, I read a book about allergies. It informed me that the medical definition of allergies excludes a lot of common symptoms of sensitivity, such as those that indicate low-grade food intolerance. Untreated allergy symptoms wage a constant war of attrition with the immune system, reducing its functionality.

I felt the need for allergy testing again in the fall of 2011. Technological advances have made it possible to test 100,000 different substances using energy frequency. To my complete surprise, I was told that my body didn’t like seafood, eggs, beef and pork, all of which had been my main sources of protein throughout my life. Although since receiving treatment my body can tolerate them, my cravings for those foods have disappeared.

It’s interesting that my daughter claimed at age nine that the smell of eggs and seafood repelled her and stopped eating both. The allergist who tested me said that allergies are hereditary and thus my daughter inherited her sensitivity from me. I grew up in coastal cities and seafood and eggs were convenient protein sources. My family didn’t have much choice back then, and because of that I guess I’d neglected my body’s messages so much that I couldn’t hear them anymore. When my daughter complained about eggs and seafood, I asked Grandmaster JinBodhi how to differentiate between a kid’s willful pickiness and the truth of what their body needs. He told me to listen to my daughter without judgment. A child’s pure state of body and mind, he said, reveals its truth with ease. I’m happy that I allowed my daughter to let her body speak and listened to its wisdom.

Sometimes cravings occur because certain nutritional factors in whatever food we are wanting are needed by the body. Different foods have different yin-yang properties. When I travel to Korea during the winter, I want a kimchi noodle soup to warm me up. When I’m stressed and tired, an apple calms me down. Maybe you feel like eating dessert today but worry that the sugar content is detrimental. If it is a spontaneous, infrequent craving, then don’t suppress it. Let your body guide you. However, don’t confuse a true call with a false alarm. Be present and honest with yourself and you’ll learn to interpret your physical signals.

Let your body tell you when to eat and when to stop. Bodily needs and mental desires are totally different, but we often confuse the two. Clear your mind to unveil your body’s messages. A Zen master was asked what Zen is, and he replied, “Eat when you eat, and sleep when you sleep.” In other words, be present. Try to chew food with your mind on chewing food, try to drink water with your mind on the feeling of water flowing down your throat. Stay alert in order to be conscious of when your body has had enough.

Be careful not to be misguided by the abundance of conflicting health advice available on the Internet and in books and other publications. Your body is the authority, and its wisdom surpasses all advice from other sources. New diets and health tips appear constantly, and are sometimes eventually proven ineffective or even harmful. Remain open to new information but listen to your body first and foremost.

Your innate wisdom, not your vanity, should serve as your guide, because the purpose of weight loss is better health. Choose the right foods, the right quantities and the right timing according to your body’s messages.

Tips on Healthy Weight Loss

  1. Diet bowl

In a Taiwanese market, I saw artful lacquer bowls labeled “Diet Bowls.” At first I was confused, but then I understood the marketing strategy: By calling them “Diet Bowls,” the seller easily created the illusion that they somehow had magical weight loss powers. The bowls were mid-size, with nothing special about them. The magical power is generated in the buyer’s mind: By limiting themselves to eating only what a “Diet Bowl” can hold, those who own one will shed extra pounds. Lao Tzu, the founder of Taoism, said, “Fill your bowl to the brim and it will spill.” Don’t stuff yourself. Instead, eat until you are eighty percent full. This is the way to health. If you are accustomed to overeating, you may feel hungry when you begin to scale back portion size. After a week or so, your stomach, which had previously been stretched by large quantities, will begin to acclimate to receiving less.

  1. Water bottle

More than seventy percent of the human body is water. Ample and timely water drinking promotes a healthy digestive and circulatory system. First thing in the morning, drink a big cup of water at room temperature. To relieve constipation, drink either ice-cold, salted or vinegar water instead.

For weight loss, try to drink a big cup of water ten minutes before every meal. Doing so reduces cravings, helps digestion and causes your nerves to believe that your stomach is not as empty as it actually is.

Many diet pills cause people to lose water weight only, which is unhealthy. Hydration is essential to maintaining a balanced physique.

  1. Elastic Belt

Another way to reduce the feeling of hunger and control food intake is to wear an elastic belt. Choose a belt made of breathable material, about four inches wide. Don’t cinch it too tight. Wearing a belt prevents you from overindulging. It also helps the stomach shrink to normal size.

  1. Prostration Mat

Aerobic exercise is a necessary component of the weight loss process. A strong heart and toned muscles are essential to overall health. An easy way to keep fit is prostration. Do it indoors or out, on a cotton mat or blanket.

A practice used by meditators to access Source’s energy, prostration is also an exercise that works all the major joints and big muscle groups. It works especially well on belly fat. An hour of prostration at average speed generates light perspiration and gently expels toxins.

Disappearing Act: Fifty Pounds in Four Months

Kari Porter is a sales and marketing professional living in New Jersey. Afflicted by ill health for years, she was frustrated by conventional medicine, which in her case had been ineffective. Drugs prescribed by her doctor had only made her sicker. Eighteen years of taking a medication that was supposed to remedy hypothyroidism actually created an illness called Reverse T3. She also had an eye condition called retinal vein occlusion that threatened the vision in her right eye. Debilitating physical pain, nausea, migraines, brain fog, insomnia and difficulty walking made happiness and productivity elusive. Weight gain was another depressing side-effect of poor health, and Kari hadn’t been able to shed excess pounds despite disciplined attempts at various diets. She was tired of being told by her doctors to eat less, exercise more and take antidepressants.

In December of 2010, Kari was introduced to Bodhi Meditation. After weekly practice for a month, her eye condition stopped getting worse and shortly after she began meditating five days a week, it began to improve. The confidence to take control of her health emerged quickly in response to the holistic nurturing of meditation. Encouraged by the miraculous improvement of her eye, she abandoned the Western medical path and sought out a fresh direction.

With the help of a holistic practitioner, Kari discovered that she was also suffering from Epstein-Barr virus and adrenal exhaustion. Calling on the inner strength facilitated by her Bodhi practice, she implemented a radical, non-traditional protocol to treat her thyroid condition in February of 2011. The miraculous healing of her eye had fortified her faith in both Bodhi Meditation and the possibility of brighter days, and thus she had the courage to undergo controversial alternative treatment. By mid-May, Kari’s health had drastically improved – she was walking without pain and her blood pressure had fallen fifty points. She felt alive for the first time in years. Excess pounds began to disappear, and Kari added daily exercise – something that previously would have been impossible.

Continuing to tune in to her body’s needs, Kari embarked on a weight loss program in June of 2011 and within four months, she had lost fifty pounds. The confidence she gained through Bodhi gave her the courage to take on her health conditions in a non-traditional way. She now has a brand-new life of unlimited possibilities. Her newfound confidence has impacted every area of her journey.

Kari said joyfully, “Losing fifty pounds has had many benefits. At the top of the list is improved health, both physical and emotional, as well as improved appearance, energy and vitality. I’m able to do more and want to do everything!  By the way, within a year of beginning my Bodhi practice, my eye was 99.9% healed. Most of all, I feel in touch with myself and my family, and am looking forward to a healthy and happy future.”

Spontaneous Fasting: Thirty-Five Pounds in Four Retreats

Ana Ruvalcabq lives in Los Angeles and she was introduced to Bodhi Meditation through a friend at work. Neck and shoulder pain had been plaguing her for over a year, and thus she was keen to find a source of holistic relief. After experiencing Master Guan-Hai’s energy healing just once at the Los Angeles Center, her pain vanished instantaneously. Imbued with elated relief, Ana enrolled in an 8.5-Day Bodhi Meditation and Fitness Retreat.

She completed two Retreats, buoyed by newfound peace and happiness. Ana was thrilled to effortlessly shed ten pounds while eating delicious vegetarian food. The surprise change in her figure motivated her to attend a couple more Retreats and deepen her knowledge of Bodhi Meditation.

During the third Retreat, Ana experienced spontaneous fasting and lost fourteen more pounds. Very different from forced fasting, a spontaneous fast occurs automatically, happening more often to meditation practitioners because they are acutely aware of physical needs and listen to them. Some such fasters need no food or drink for days or even months, and some consume a little with a long interval in between times of eating or drinking. It is believed that during fasting, the body, especially the digestive system, is readjusting and energizing itself, and therefore the experience is beneficial to overall health.

The first time she fasted, Ana only drank water and tea for seven days and felt energetic and joyful. “It was amazing and exciting to see my weight go down steadily. I lost two pounds a day,” she remembered.

After the Retreat ended Ana’s appetite changed. She didn’t feel particularly hungry and no longer craved fatty or sugary foods. Her body seemed to have been reset, and issued clear messages about what foods were good for her health. Ana listened to those messages and as a result didn’t put the weight back on, which is the most important piece of news for everyone challenged by extra pounds.

Ana attended a fourth Retreat and lost an additional eleven pounds while in a state of spontaneous fasting. Living on water and tea yet feeling vital, her body again recalibrated itself. It became easier for Ana to listen to her body’s truth.

After struggling with her weight for many years, she was able to lose the extra pounds quickly, without medication or any other drugs, for the first time in her life. The weight simply melted away through the natural mind and body tuning facilitated by meditation exercises.

Ana is still excited about her new look and new life. “I am very happy with my life now and I have learned to eat better and make better choices. I am very lucky to have found Bodhi Meditation at this time in my life. I am very grateful for all the blessings I have received. I wouldn’t change it for anything.”


Meditation & Health No 3 - Table of Contents