Healthy food is very important to live better and healthier life but what exactly the healthy food is? Let’s ask these questions to Food expert Dr. Dan Brook who is professor of political science and sociology, speaker, author, poet and photographer. Dan maintains Eco-eating at his website Brook.com and has published various books that can be found here. You can find more information about Dan Brook at his about.me profile.
Interview with Dan Brook
YogaCurious: Hello Dan, Can you tell our readers on how you started your journey as food expert?
Dan: The synchronicity of a few things in 1983 inspired me to think about my food consumption and led me to become vegetarian. One was a compassionate and inspirational biology teacher. Another was working — for only one day — in a chicken coop and having to face the many chickens and their different personalities. Some were friendly, some didn’t care about me at all, and some were clearly hostile to me being there. I identified with their feelings.
We all eat and that is one of the many things that connect us to each other and to the rest of the world. Eating also has a huge impact on the eater, the eaten, and the culture and environment around us.
YogaCurious: What is your source of motivation for doing this extremely good work?
Dan: I simply want to make the world a better place for as many as possible, human and animal alike. We have tremendous power, potential, and promise. Indeed, our potentiality always exceeds our actuality. I find that very exciting!
YogaCurious: What kind of food do you recommend our readers to during yoga & gym? How do you describe the food timetable for children, adults, pregnant women & aged people?
Dan: I am a doctor of society, not a medical doctor, so I give a different sort of advice. I recommend LOVE for all people — Local, Organic, Veg Eating, which is of course related to love. Depending on one’s stage of life and level of activity, one might need more or less calories, more or less fluids. Regardless, it’s important to eat a diversity of plant foods, aiming to eat the rainbow every day, if possible.
YogaCurious: Nowadays, people are very busy in their day to day life activity. What kind of food would you suggest they have in their busy life?
Dan: Busy lives can be partially counteracted by simple foods. Simple foods may lead to simpler lives as we develop more clarity of brain and body. Some simple foods can be prepared in advance, making meals easier for the week. Additionally, certain whole foods — such as fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds — are the original and best fast foods. One could eat them anytime!
YogaCurious: What in your opinion are the greatest health benefits of eating good & healthy food?
Dan: The benefits of eating healthy are substantially greater than we generally realize: much improved personal health, spiritual health, community health, animal health, and environmental health. It’s hard to do something that has such direct and positive impact at so many levels.
YogaCurious: Apart from eating good & healthy food, which are the other activities one can do to live healthy life?
Dan: Studies of longevity show that, besides eating mostly or exclusively plant-based, people live healthiest when they drink a lot of water, engage in mental and physical exercise, and maintain regular and rewarding social relationships. There are also things we should avoid, including tobacco and smoke, dangerous chemicals, junk and processed foods, too much sugar, and the like.
In terms of practice, I sometimes do yoga and do meditation — regular yoga, smile meditation, laughing yoga, compassion meditation — though I’m more interested in living yoga and meditation, ideally in being yoga and meditation. They should, as much as possible, be integrated into one’s life more than ghettoized for certain times, places, and activities. Further, yoga should be much more than physical, as meditation should be much more than focusing. Asanas should also be mental, spiritual, gastronomical, and more, while sitting should be transformed into omnipresent consciousness during all activities and experiences. Regardless, yoga and meditation should seek to improve our world for all its inhabitants. If we only try to make ourselves better through these or other tools, we are not bettering our world and therefore not really bettering ourselves.
YogaCurious: Say a few final words for our readers.
Dan: With exceptions to be sure, I try to take Gandhi’s advice to be the change I want to see in the world. Gandhi also taught us that happiness is derived from harmonizing what we think, what we say, and what we do. Yoga, meditation, and LOVE are certainly part of that. May we all live together in a happier, healthier, more compassionate, and sustainable world.
Thank you !
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