Health and Well-being: The Spiritual Side of Culinary School

by Jen Wanous

It’s hard to believe, but this is my last month of school.  The heat has really been turned up as I have been preparing for our final dinner for 100 guests and have been working in some of NYC’s top kitchens, trying to secure an internship.  Long days that turn into nights have me delirious and wobbly on my feet.  Yes, I love to be working with food…but it is dang hard work!  Through all of this, I have come to rely on some unlikely lessons I have recently learned in school to get me through.

A big component of our curriculum at school is food and its link to health.  We have gone over the basics in nutrition and have also gone deeper with different theories of healing through food.  Macrobiotic is an approach to physical and emotional wellness through food and philosophy.  Below, I have outlined the ten conditions of health according to the founder of macrobiotics, George Ohsawa.

Getting a solid night’s sleep and gently practicing the other conditions have really helped me get through this grueling time.  In alignment with the ninth condition, I would like to thank you all, who read my blog and support me in following my passion.  I hope that you too can find health and well being through taking good care of your body and mind.  You are certainly worth it.

Ten Conditions of Health

1.  Good appetite.  Things that might interfere with this are caffeine, snacking, skipping meals, too much sugar and alcohol.  Also, don’t eat when you are worried or angry.

2.  Good sleep.  What time do you need to go to bed to get eight hours of sleep?  Avoid late-night eating; try not to eat three hours before bed.

3.  No fatigue. Pace yourself and listen to your body when it needs rest.  When you start to feel sick or you injure yourself, slow down and take it easy.

4.  Good memory.  The very basic of this ensures our survival.  Remember how you felt the last time you ate something.

5.  Good humor. Don’t take yourself or life too seriously.

6.  Precision in thought and action. 

7.  Honesty.  Be honest with yourself and others.

8.  Humility.  Be open to not knowing and to learning.  It is okay to not know something.

9.  Gratitude.  Have trust in the universe that there is an infinite amount of abundance.  When you start appreciating the good things, even small, more good will come.

10.  Love.  First yourself, and then others.  Accept yourself as you are and be open to this connection with others.


To learn more about macrobiotics, follow this link.

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