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Food & Drink

Food: the new holistic medicine with Maria Benardis

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Holistic ingredients used in the kitchen. (iStock)

Maria Benardis of Greekalicious shares her passion for food, eating and healing by adopting ancient Greek wisdoms and philosophies with Vipp Jaswal on Fox News Radio.

An important ancient Greek wisdom practiced was that of “agapi” (the Greek word for unconditional love) to attain harmony. A state of being free of judgment, fear and ego. Agapi was practiced in the kitchen, when eating and in life. With agapi all becomes unified and creativity flows. The ancient Greeks had an emphasis on cooking spiritually rather than stressfully. 

When we cook with agapi and positive energy we bring a joyful harmonious energy into the kitchen and into our life. When we cook with agapi we are centered and are able to cook intuitively using all our senses including our soul. To achieve a sense of agapi the ancient Greeks incorporated many therapies such as light therapy and color therapy in the kitchen and in their lives.

Take a listen here to get a deeper insight:

Maria encourages listeners to become conscious about what they eat and to “let medicine be thy food and food thy medicine” – Hippocrates. This requires a conscious commitment to know what’s in your food, where your ingredients come from and how they impact your mind, body and spirit. The ancient Greeks also believed that if you consumed pain then you also took on the pain and therefore meat was consumed moderately or not all. Plutarch believed that if we must eat meat then let’s eat it with “sorrow and pity” and without “tormenting or abusing the poor animal”. She encourages people to explore and rediscover how to use nature for personal healing instead of relying solely on conventional medicine that has failed to deliver real solutions. Illness and depression is prevalent. Opt for certified organic ingredients that contain maximum nutritional content wherever possible and avoid toxic genetically modified foods, foods with additives, chemicals and pesticides.

Her top 5 must have ingredients in the kitchen include fresh organic fruit and vegetables, fermented foods and apple cider vinegar for gut health, spices and herbs, good sources of oils such olive oil, coconut oil and nuts and seeds (eliminate vegetable, canola, corn, soy, and cotton seed oils), wholegrains and legumes.

Her top 5 herb suggestions and their noted benefits in ancient Greece include parsley (good for digestion), cilantro (heal ulcers, skin tumors and infections), oregano (prescribed for coughs and used as a tea bath to cure itching and psoriasis), rosemary (enhances brain performance, used as a gargle for a sore throat and boiled in wine for stomach pains) and basil (soothing to the abdomen and used as a treatment for constipation).

The ancient Greek wisdoms on cooking, eating and healing are further explored in the August re-release of her book “Cooking & Eating Wisdom for Better Health - Ancient Greek Wisdoms for Cooking, Eating and Living Better.” The book also features some key ingredients used in ancient Greece and their healing benefits noted by Hippocrates and other ancients that were used by them in their cooking and in potions to heal health conditions. Recipes are also included to showcase the healing ingredients.