Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Post Yoga Comfort Foods

Those who practice yoga asanas know that you really shouldn't eat for at least 2-3 hours before your practice.  This is a REAL challenge for me.  I usually eat something every 3 hours!  

Eating before practice can lead to queasiness when doing inverted poses and can interfere with other poses that cause abdominal compression, like forward bends.  Many yoga poses bring great benefit to the digestive system by stimulating perisalysis in the intestines or by toning the abdominal muscles- but you really don't want a full belly for this!

So I try to plan my meals so that they don't interfere with yoga- if I have a plan to practice at a certain time.  Tonight I had plans to practice with my friend Crystal, so I ate a late lunch that would tide me over until our dinnertime practice.  

It ended up being late before we finished, but all the while I had a big pot of soup simmering on the stove.  The scent of sage and thyme wafting through the air was more relaxing than a lavendar eye pillow could dream of being.  

So as soon as we were done I dropped the homemade dumplings into the simmering vegetable soup.  

{If you're used to dumplings that look like biscuits, you might be confused by my picture.  In my family, dumplings are essentially very thick, buttery fresh pasta.  And I must insist that this is the BEST way.}

If you're looking for the recipe, visit my page on Seitan and Dumplings.  I used nearly the same recipe, except omitted the seitan, used 1/2 whole wheat flour in the dumplings, and added bigger veggie chunks and ginger to the broth.  By the way, this is an adaptation of my Meemaw's recipe, so it pretty much guaranteed to be good.

The best part about this soup is that it is so simple- just vegetables, herbs, and dumplings simmered together.  I find that after gaining a calm, focused, meditative mind during practice I don't crave strong flavors, salt, sugar, or other stimulating foods.  

Here are some other great snacks I enjoy after yoga:
Fresh fruit
Toast with nut butters
Hot tea
Really simple steamed or roasted squash or potatoes
Nearly any kind of soup
Yogurt with granola

Do you have a favorite post-yoga snack?


Vegyogini said...

I like to eat fruit after I practice. When I practice at dinner time, I do need to eat an hour beforehand because hunger pangs distract me from my practice! :)

Crystal said...

I'm the same way vegyogini- I need to eat before I practice otherwise that's all I can think about!- even more so when I'm teaching a class becuase there is alot more time where i can think!

jessy said...

oh my gosh, Liz - this soup sounds wonderful. warm, comforting, the perfect combination of herbs - and those dumplings are made the way i'm used to as well. mmmmmmmmm!

after i practice i love to have a fruit smoothie. just a handful of spinach, a pear (or some fruit in season), and half a banana (we have a ton in our freezer that we're working through - as we're not buying bananas any more). it's sooo delicious. sometimes i make a peach & ginger smoothie and toss in some blackberries. we have lots of frozen local fruit that i love to blend up for a light meal after yoga. i'm going to have to consider making some soup now! it sounds just perfect!

allularpunk said...

i'm making soup for dinner tonight and this looks so good! and it's also making me want to pick up yoga (as my mom has been telling me to do for years). dunno just seem so calm and serene. it's nice.

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Mmm, looks like nice comfort food.

Kelly said...

Another beautiful bowl of soup. That looks so warm and comforting.