As bloggers who largely focus on the growing culinary scene in San Antonio, we often find ourselves rushed and eating mindlessly throughout the day. Yes, the food tastes amazing and is 100% Instagram worthy, but what’s our body feeling? We decided to treat our souls to mindful eating with Pharm Table’s three day weekly meal bag to see if what we put into our bodies has the power to heal more than we’ve ever imagined.
I’m not one who likes to monitor what I eat. I don’t count calories and rarely look at nutrition labels long enough to withhold any knowledge about my favorite foods. When I met with Elizabeth Johnson, owner and chef at Pharm Table (located across from the Tobin Center), I was truly inspired by her passion for food. One of the common questions about either a Pharm Table cleanse or meal bag is, “how many calories am I ingesting per meal?” If there would’ve been a set amount of calories that would promote weight loss, I would have passed on the weekly meal bag, but Elizabeth let me know that she doesn’t know how many calories are in the meals, either in the bags or served at the restaurant. It’s all about eating for your body and giving it the energy and nutrition it needs.
For three days, Jacqueline and I were each given colorful and vibrant packages that held three soups, three salads, three bowls with 3 ounce animal protein (vegan bags also available), one seasonal hummus, three seasonal quinoa tamales, one pickled ginger meal starter and 16 ounce nut milk. The anti-inflammatory, farm to table ingredients promote easy digestion so your body doesn’t have to spend all of it’s time and energy digesting food and instead this energy is transferred directly to you. I was looking forward to feeling more energized. The rest of the blog will contain excerpts from the food journal Jacqueline and I kept during the three days documenting our feelings of completely transforming our diet.
Jacqueline’s Mindful Food Journey:
On day one I was a little intimidated since I had never done a meal plan of any kind before I began this journey. Since I was able to eat actual food rather than juicing, I was already put at ease. I started my day off with the quinoa tamale, which I was really excited to try. The tamale was fluffy and paired with a nice salsa. I also dissolved a turmeric tablet in 4oz of water to start the day off. For lunch I ate a crunchy kale caesar salad, and for dinner, a light soup made with zucchini and corn. Overall, the first day I was just getting used to eating new healthy foods that I would probably never make myself.
Day two my body was feeling the detox. I started the day off again with the tamale and turmeric tablet, which gave me plenty of energy. I had a beet chia snack before lunch. And during lunch I had the cambodian style salad which made me do this little happy dance. For the main course, I had the lamb curry which was so filling, which is something I honestly didn’t expect to feel. After I had the poblano soup for dinner, I went shopping with my sister and experienced a headache since I was cleansing my body of sugar and salt.
By day three I felt like a pro. I was really enjoying the food and began to feel full before I finished my meals. For lunch I had the chicken salad, which was one of the most colorful dishes I have ever eaten. I had the zucchini noodle salad on the side, which I saved for later since the chicken salad filled me up. For dinner I ate a rice dish called Persian Kitchari. What I enjoyed most about the meal bags was being able to try new food.
Alyssa’s Mindful Food Journey:
Cutting sugar and the copious amounts of caffeine I tend to ingest on a daily basis was tough. I did not realize how much our body needs sugar! Elizabeth informed us before we embarked on this new weekly meal plan that sugar withdrawal is real and most of us don’t realize it. On day one, I was feeling hungry after my dinner of kitchari, a South Asian dish made from rice and lentils. Instead of waiting a good 30 minutes for the food to fully hit my stomach, I whipped up some oatmeal with milk and honey and quickly ate it on my couch. As I was completing the first half of oats, I noticed my stomach for the first time all day. It was upset, and it was odd. It was at this time that I realized that my stomach had been properly digesting all the untainted food I was putting through my body and it was having a hard time with milk, hence the slight stomach pain. This moment put everything in perspective for me. Not only had I been aware enough of my body and diet to notice such a slight change, but it made me think how long I had been living with slight stomach pains?! So often we go throughout our days without paying attention to what our body is telling us. The weekly meal plan made me consciously aware that everything I put into my body, whether it’s a liquid or solid, has an effect.
Pharm Table is open Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for lunch and from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday for dinner. Along with weekly meal bags, Pharm Table also offers 3 day cleanses and workshops.