Veggie Burgs + Vagus Nerves

Hello beauties! I hope this post finds you happy and healthy, and if not, then striving towards happiness and health. I have some yummy recipes and a cool mind body concept for you today, so let’s dive right in.

This weekend, my roommate from college and dearest soul sister Emily came to visit from Colorado. Our favorite pastimes include eating and lounging together, so that’s a lot of what we did. We went to dinner in Boston’s Chinatown, my first time being there!, and went to a Vietnamese place where I got pad thai because I am a creature of habit. We also shared a yellow cream canoli from Mike’s Pastries between us and my boyfriend. Unpictured because it was gone before I could pretend to snap a pic! The next morning we went to Blue Shirt Cafe in Davis Sq.

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The juice was called “an apple a day” and consisted of apple, ginger, and lemon. We then adventured to the Museum of Science, which had an INCREDIBLE nutrition exhibit where they show you what a day in the food life of people across the world looks like. They interviewed people such as an acrobat, a woman struggling with binge eating disorder, and an astronaut, and it was so cool to see what other cultures’ eating habits are like. Part of this exhibit also included education surrounding diabetes and hypertension, and how lifestyle changes can drastically decrease your chances. So incredible!

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For dinner we went to Joe’s American Bar and Grill with our other college roommate — reunited and it felt so good! We ALL got ahi tuna burgers, which was kind of spicy and amazing.

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The next day I did a 7 mile run towards my half training and was reminded that Boston is a pretty pretty place…

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As for meal prep for the week: I am having my usual springtime smoothie (frozen strawberries, spinach, banana, almond milk, coconut oil, peanut butter, chia seeds, flaxseed.)

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And my favorite egg salad recipe for lunches.

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What you do:

Hardboil 6 eggs, let cool and chop them up with celery, plain Greek yogurt, and dijon mustard. So simple and perfect on a wrap!

As for dinners, I made a modification of The Full Helping’s Quinoa Chickpea Burgers.

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I didn’t add in any pumpkin seeds, and I used sundried tomato pesto. Pair that with some brussel sprouts and you are in it to win it my friends.

And now on to the part that may have made you think huh?! when you started reading. What the heck is the vagus nerve? It’s the largest cranial nerve in the body, and helps regulate all of the extremely important bodily functions like breathing and digesting. Those with healthy vagal functioning, a “higher vagal tone”, are more resilient, have an easier time connecting the body and mind, and are more able to be fluid, level-headed with emotional output. Those with a low vagus tone are less resilient, more prone to digestion struggles, stress, anxiety, depression, and emotion dysregulation. The vagus nerve helps to calm us after being in fight-or-flight mode, or really distressing situations.

Why am I bringing this up? My roommate and I were recently talking about feeling disconnected, not as engaged in our lives, and less excitable than usual. Someone in her life told her about this, and how connecting to the vagus nerve is an important part of the mind body connection that keeps us engaged, balanced, and feeling alive. So if you’re feeling a little more disconnected, a little less zen, and not like yourself as of late, it could be a good time to reconnect to your vagus nerve. This can be done by taking really cold baths, meditating and focusing on the breath in a slow and controlled fashion, exercise, and yoga. AKA all of the activities you already know will help make you feel better. Sometimes it’s good to know what is actually going on in your body that is causing you to feel a certain way – somewhat takes the pressure off and reminds you that you’re not doing anything wrong. Have a great week lovebugs!

What can you do to improve your vagal tone this week?

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