Letter from the Publisher

March’s issue, as you may have guessed from the cover, is a special one. This month not only do we have some informative articles around the subject of food and eye health, but we’ve highlighted our advertisers by spreading the Community Resource Guide (normally in the back) throughout the magazine. This variety of resources, by category, also incorporates all our display advertisers. We trust you’ll find it convenient when looking for services and products, and save this March edition as a resource for your holistic lifestyle. See Annual Advertiser’s Index on page 8.

Food matters. Whether you’re looking at it from a global or local perspective, it’s a very complicated issue. With the advent of the large industrial complexes of animal and plant food production, it seems that the chemical/pharmaceutical industries have become a significant player in order to offset the unintended consequences of crowded animal conditions. With the intent of creating “super foods” and the introduction of GMOs, we have created even more questions and further consequences that are still being uncovered and brought to light. All that aside, it comes down to each of us making choices every meal, every bite. What do we think serves best our own body, our life style and our core values? Do we want to be a part of the solution in ending world hunger by not only having a sustainable food system for one community, but the world’s community? Doesn’t the health of one affect another? I think so.

There are many points of view reflected in this issue. There’s an article about making better meat choices by Hemmelgarn; she also talks about sustainable livestock agriculture. On one hand meat from factory farming has more chemicals used and on the other hand pasture fed beef, as in the article “Why Vegan” by Glover, states they produce 20 percent or more methane and require more land and water resources. It’s not only complicated, it becomes convoluted.

During the last few days of February and early days of March, I’ll be attending a week- long gathering of nearly 2,000 who will have the opportunity to eat vegan meals prepared by internationally acclaimed chefs. For the group, there will also be fitness classes, educational lectures and of course time to relax, meet new people and have fun. There will be Natural Awakenings magazines available for all participants.

Even if you’re talking vegan, there are different schools of thought. Oil or no oil, gluten or gluten-free, raw or cooked, and what are the components of a nutritious, balanced meal? All these questions and more play into the mix of what makes sense for our personal diet choices. While in California in the 70s, I was introduced to vegetarianism. Sprouts were a new food for me. I remember the mound of alfalfa sprouts atop the salads. Micro-greens are a version of that, and I recently delighted in tasting a variety of baby plants that my body seemed to enjoy eating.

I believe it is the responsibility for each of us to educate ourselves about food choices. Try different things and pay attention to how your body feels.

When I first started on this “serious” food journey, I got some tests done and worked with several of our advertisers in figuring out how I could feel better by modifying what I ate. The loudest or most prominent noise/reaction was that felt in my stomach area. It was also the most responsive and consistent signal. Sometimes, I feel my stomach seem to say the combination of foods is not right, or not in the right proportions. My body is my greatest teacher. Is she not being so subtle in saying, “I want a little respect here?”

I enjoy eating; I enjoy the camaraderie of sharing a meal and the preparation of a meal with others, and feel like I could do it more often than I do.

To share a meal is divine by design. Infuse laughter into the process and you are nearing perfection.

Enjoy your next meal; plan on it.

SusieQ Wood

Publishing Editor

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