by Sandra Radja
Once upon a time there was a fridge. His name was Terence. Terence had worried about his weight since he was a bar fridge. He was stocky, heavy and cold and would get the sniffles often especially since his head was full of ice. It was the sniffles that kept the fridge cold so he just put up with it. He did like to sing though and would hum. But because he was stocky, heavy and cold he would only hum one note. But boy, did he have the stamina to hold that note.
Terence didn't move much but he liked meeting new fridge articles. Once a week the humans would stuff his belly with new items, made from colourful paper and plastic. These items always got the top half of the shelves since they had marketing stamped on their skin. Down below, in the gutter, went the hippie veggies and fruit outrageously naked and sometimes imperfect and yet kind of good looking. The side shelves was the where the immigrants lived. There was Jazzy the sweet chillie goddess. She liked to get around and claimed she could make anything worth eating. Benji, the tomato sauce bottle, liked to hang out with Jazzy. He always felt a little insecure because of when his cousin Trent, ketchup, would visit from the US and show him up. Kanya, the Thai curry paste girl, felt misunderstood and complex and couldn't hold a conversation with simple Benji, whom she secretly had a crush on. He didn't see that deep down, she had chillies inside her with the other spices.
The middle of the shelves was reserved for the left-over-gang. They were mean and carried sulphur guns ready to aim at whomever digested them. They would be heard late at night howling at the fridge light that went on/off/on/off. They formed an alliance with the TV dinners, salty and sweet snacks, and weight watchers slim meals that came so prettily packaged – but as we all know, you can’t put lipstick on a pig. That’s what the veggie hippies called them, the Miss Piggy’s. They used to be full of energy when they were young but once cooked and put in the fridge, they started to look like the other preserved food around the hood – lacklustre, saggy and dull.
But at least they were preserved. They knew they would be around for awhile, not like the milk and fresh veggies and fruit that seemed to perish within a week! The condiments did miss Laurence, who lived on a floor below them. He used to be the fortified milk that would always be even tempered. You never saw him sour. But then one day, the family moved next to a farmers market and this new guy that now comes in, all creamy and raw and playing the guitar and writing poetry like that Bob Dairy bloke. No one knows him, just like they don’t know those hippies in the veggie compartment. They seem to arrive with dirt under their nails with stories to tell. Their vibrations seem to glow and they are quite content in their nakedness, all young and peachy cheeked. No marketing material, no reconstructive surgery and added chemicals to make them look pretty. And the humans’ kids seem to like to pick them from the ground. The pretty wiggles packaging is not keeping their interest these days.
Terence has been around awhile and things were fairly regular until the family moved to the country. The coloured bottles were getting phased out. One by one, we would never see the plastic orange juice bottle and mayonnaise jar again. Some of the items were thrown in the bin, whilst the others were RE-USED for their glass exteriors. The horror! They were the older generation, unable to adapt to the new way of doing things. All of a sudden there were glass jars with fresh yoghurt and the juicing got done on the spot. Pickles were homemade and so were the jams. The hippies started to migrate further north and in their quiet rebellion took over the left-over-gang in a west-side story that needs to be told one day. Terence watched the family eat together more and the excess food get given to friends and neighbours. And they even seemed to becoming more good looking as they ate well and lived well, reflecting the essence of the food they ate. His armpits began to smell better and although still stock, heavy and cold, he did feel a little spring in his step. He realized he would just accept his body type and make the most of it. These days he didn’t feel sluggish, and that was what was really weighing him down.
Who knows what the new generation will bring. Terence is getting old and he fears perhaps his time might be up. There is talk of more efficient means of refrigerating that doesn’t use as much electricity. Can you imagine? Who knows what kind of lifestyle we might adopt when that happens!
Tips to avoid the grazing and keep the freshest food possible in your fridge.
1. Plan meals ahead of time. You don’t need to have a fancy meal every day. Your first focus should be on having a good digestive system BEFORE worrying about all the vitamins and minerals you need to consume daily. Simple meals are the best and you are more likely to do them.
2. Shop locally. This will ensure you are eating according to season and it is the best way to stay healthy. I personally eat little fruit in the winter time since I don’t need the purifying and I haven’t been sick this winter yet. Importing fruit from tropical parts of the world to satisfy our need for variety is becoming an inefficient use of our energy.
3. Make snacks. Easiest way to avoid eating them.
4. Grow food. It’s just so exciting to make food from your own garden. Everyone digs this. And it looks great. Fruit and veggies add colour and texture to the outside of your home and make it feel welcoming. Getting your hands dirty also connects you to the life of the plant and cultivates a respect for the lifecycle of the food source.
5. Create set meal times that involve the whole family. There is no better digestive than the anticipation of a good well cooked meal. And there is no better weight loss protocol than creating a robust appetite.
6. Emotional eating is borne from anxiety. Ways to overcome this can involve calming essential oils, yoga nidra sessions, taking a walk, doing gentle breathing exercises.
7. Drink water. You might be thirsty instead.
8. Keep your fridge clean and throw out rotten food. Condiments are probably the worst for this. The longer the fermented process takes place the higher the probability of inflammation caused in the body. A little fermented food is great for the body, but be mindful of your vikruti, as it can cause problems relating to Pitta dosha.
9. Get invited to dinner. And do the same for others. Makes it easier to store fewer ingredients and it’s more fun that way as well as avoiding take out.
10. Don’t put cooked food in the fridge. The prana, by that stage, is kaput. Freeze fresh veggies and meat if you need to but once it’s cooked, eat it and give away the rest. Your neighbours will think you’re awesome.