Crave Less, Live More

June 17, 2013 at 12:17 am | Posted in Good Advice, Reflections, Relevance to Today | Leave a comment
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What primary foods can do for you

By Tysan Lerner | June 15, 2013

Healthy relationships, regular physical activity, a fulfilling career, and a spiritual practice can fill your soul and satisfy your hunger for life. (Epoch Times)

Most of us spend years searching for the perfect diet and the perfect way to feel healthy, energized, and attractive. Scientific studies are launched one after another, showing how each new diet that comes along is superior to the one before.

It’s Not Just About Food

What we eat is deeply important. Food nourishes our blood, our cells, and our brains, but who we are being between meals is just as important for good health as what we eat.
So, as you embark on your health journey, look not only at what you put into your mouth, but also at who you are when you eat, what is your life is like, and what you are doing with your body, the temple of your soul, on a daily basis.

Joshua Rosenthal, founder of Integrative Nutrition, has coined the term “primary foods.” He says: “Food is more than what you find on your plate. Healthy relationships, regular physical activity, a fulfilling career, and a spiritual practice can fill your soul and satisfy your hunger for life. When primary food is balanced and satiated, your life feeds you, making what you eat secondary.”

I used to think that if I ate a balanced diet, it would bring me into balance. That I would feel centered, awake, and happy to be alive. I became obsessed with finding the perfect way to eat, hoping I would soon find the balance I so craved.

As a result, I did look and feel physically better. My digestion and skin improved. I had more consistent levels of energy, fewer headaches, and less belly fat, but I still struggled with my mood and weight. I kept thinking, I must fine-tune my diet even more. I must get this right.

But here’s the thing, eating right wasn’t going to fix my financial issues, my relationships, my lack of creative expression, or my body composition. Nor was eating right going to bring me closer to higher spiritual ground.

Eating right helped me fix my physical body, but not my mindset. And when I finally understood this, my life began to change.

Getting in Alignment

According to Rosenthal, there are four common areas in peoples’ lives that carry a lot of weight for them: relationships, career, fitness, and spirituality. Take a look at each of these areas in your life and think about how they are going for you.

Do you feel that they are in alignment with who you are and what you value? Rather than allowing them to just happen to you, think deeply about what you want them to look like for you and how you can make them work even better.

An Exercise to Get Started

Take four pieces of blank paper. Label each with one life area: relationships, career, fitness, and spirituality. Create two columns on each paper. One column is for the things that are nurturing this aspect of your life, and the other column is for the things missing in this aspect of your life.

Write down one thing you can do on each page to help improve this area of your life. At the end of the day, when you have filled your life with healthier primary foods, enjoy craving less, and living more.


Tysan Lerner is a certified health coach and personal trainer. She helps women attain their body and beauty goals without starving themselves or spending hours at the gym. Her website is

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Destiny and Fate: Twenty Bowls of Orange Skin Soup

July 10, 2012 at 1:58 pm | Posted in Children's Stories, Culture, Good Advice, Moments from History, Reflections, Stories from China | Leave a comment
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[] In the era of the Emperor Xuzong in the Tang Dynasty, there was a fortune-teller who claimed he could foretell what foods people would eat in the future. Many officials in the Imperial Court went to see him and ask him to tell their fortune. Only one senior official, named Li Qijun, did not believe him.

Li Qijun invited the fortune-teller to his home and asked him, “What am I going to have to eat tomorrow?” The fortune-teller thought for quite a while, then told him, “You will eat two plates of sticky rice cake, and twenty bowls of orange skin soup.” Li smiled. He asked his chef to prepare a banquet for him the next day and he planned to invite other officials to join him.

In the early morning next day, the Emperor summoned Li Qijun. The Emperor told him, “Today the mayor of the imperial capital presented me some new sticky rice. My chef made some cakes with it. You might want to try some.” After quite a while, a servant brought him cakes with a golden tray. Li extended his thanks to the Emperor, and started to eat the cake. He had to eat them all although he did not want to. The Emperor delighted at Li’s finishing all of the cakes, and told the official, “It seems you like the cakes very much. Let me bestow you another plate of sticky rice cakes.” Li had to finish another entire plate’s worth of cakes.

After Li returned home, he suffered a serious stomachache. He could not eat anything and could only drink orange skin soup. It was not until midnight that the pain receded. He recalled what the fortune-teller said, and asked his servants, “How many bowls of orange skin soup did I have?” They answered, “20 bowls.”

Li gave a long sigh of admiration for the fortune-teller’s amazing ability. He asked servants to invite the fortune-teller to his residence quickly, and gave him quite a bit of money and some beautiful silk.

Adapted From Historic Anecdotes

Translated from:

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