Why one meal a day?

A place to discuss health and fitness, healthy diets. A fit body makes for a fit mind.

Re: Addithana: One Meal Per Day

Postby Chi » Thu Feb 16, 2012 4:00 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Chi,

The following discussion may be of interest to you...

Why one meal a day?
viewtopic.php?f=31&t=3045

Most days I have one meal a day (dinner), though of late I do have something tiny at lunch-time for energy... a few jellybeans or a piece of chocolate perhaps. I also drink coffee.

The Buddha promotes moderation in eating - it is a worthwhile endeavour.

Metta,
Retro. :)


Thanks Retro. I did reread through the thread yesterday (the first time I skimmed it was maybe 3-4 months ago), and it was actually the inspiration for the experiment.

Yesterday, I could tell an immediate difference. The mind was sharper (although the body needed more rest [maybe it's also the cleanse]), the sensations were subtler, the body was moving more briskly.

I went to bed early, and the dreams were pretty darn vivid (deep into the subconscious or unconscious [whatever]), something that I haven't experienced since the retreat.

Definitely will continue this for the next 45 days or so and report my findings.

with metta,
Chi
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Re: Addithana: One Meal Per Day

Postby Chi » Thu Feb 16, 2012 6:36 pm

Right now: unbelievable restlessness and cravings for sensual things.

It's all the suppressed stuff coming to the surface after eating almost non-stop for 2 weeks.

It's good for the mind :meditate:
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Re: Addithana: One Meal Per Day

Postby cooran » Thu Feb 16, 2012 8:08 pm

Hello Chi,

I'll be interested in reading your experiences with this (- though I'll be out of contact with DhammaWheel much of the time over the next three or four weeks).

with metta
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Re: Addithana: One Meal Per Day

Postby Chi » Thu Feb 16, 2012 9:27 pm

OK, I have a headache now. Maybe it's cause I have been in front of a computer for a while. Maybe I didn't eat enough this morning.

I am having a big spoonful of honey now.

Be Happy!
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Re: Addithana: One Meal Per Day

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Feb 16, 2012 10:03 pm

Chi wrote:OK, I have a headache now. Maybe it's cause I have been in front of a computer for a while. Maybe I didn't eat enough this morning.

I am having a big spoonful of honey now.

Be Happy!


Hi Chi,

The headache is most likely due to the change in your diet. Your body will adapt and the headaches will go away, as long as you get enough to eat for the one meal.
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Re: Addithana: One Meal Per Day

Postby Chi » Thu Feb 16, 2012 10:27 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:
Chi wrote:OK, I have a headache now. Maybe it's cause I have been in front of a computer for a while. Maybe I didn't eat enough this morning.

I am having a big spoonful of honey now.

Be Happy!


Hi Chi,

The headache is most likely due to the change in your diet. Your body will adapt and the headaches will go away, as long as you get enough to eat for the one meal.


OK, I am keeping this in mind and being as equanimous as possible with whatever arises.

Yes, going from eating everything in sight to not eating anything in sight. It's a big change for the body and mind, lol.
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Re: Why one meal a day?

Postby Reductor » Fri Feb 17, 2012 2:44 am

Don't forget to drink plenty of water. If you're eating less you may also be consuming less water, lack of which can produce headaches. I know all to well.
Michael

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To his own ruin the fool gains knowledge, for it cleaves his head and destroys his innate goodness. -- Dhp 72

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Re: Addithana: One Meal Per Day

Postby Goofaholix » Fri Feb 17, 2012 2:59 am

Chi wrote:OK, I have a headache now. Maybe it's cause I have been in front of a computer for a while. Maybe I didn't eat enough this morning.

I am having a big spoonful of honey now.


It's normal to get headaches for a day or two if you fast or change to a toxin free diet, particulary if you are giving up caffiene.

Taking enemas (aka douche bag in americanese) is a good way to reduce the impact of this as it helps flush out the toxins more quickly.
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Re: Why one meal a day?

Postby Chi » Fri Feb 17, 2012 10:56 pm

Energy is way up today.

Went to a 3-hour group sitting last night. Lots of stuff that has been repressed since coming back from the retreat was let go.

Woke up this morning, with less sleep than I have been averaging since beginning of February. Lots more energy. Went to a light stretching yoga class, ate a pretty darn big meal, passed out some business cards for the tutoring/mentoring/coaching business, and now I'm at home with high but a calm-ish energy.

Tomorrow I am going to a 5 AM - 5 PM Zen sesshin (I know, I know, but any meditation is better than no meditation). I might end up eating the two meals offered. I'll report.

So far, so awesome.

with metta,
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Re: Why one meal a day?

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Feb 17, 2012 11:07 pm

Chi wrote:Energy is way up today.

Went to a 3-hour group sitting last night. Lots of stuff that has been repressed since coming back from the retreat was let go.

Woke up this morning, with less sleep than I have been averaging since beginning of February. Lots more energy. Went to a light stretching yoga class, ate a pretty darn big meal, passed out some business cards for the tutoring/mentoring/coaching business, and now I'm at home with high but a calm-ish energy.

Tomorrow I am going to a 5 AM - 5 PM Zen sesshin (I know, I know, but any meditation is better than no meditation). I might end up eating the two meals offered. I'll report.

So far, so awesome.

with metta,
Chi

if they are before 12 noon you are ok!

I have found the more I meditate the more energy I have so don't mistake meditative energy rises for rises due to food intake!
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Re: Why one meal a day?

Postby Ben » Sat Feb 18, 2012 4:18 am

Cittasanto wrote:I have found the more I meditate the more energy I have so don't mistake meditative energy rises for rises due to food intake!

Indeed! The more I meditate the less food I need.
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725


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Re: Why one meal a day?

Postby Chi » Sat Feb 18, 2012 5:12 am

Confession time:

Today, I took a meal in the evening when my mom's friend who is moving back to Japan whose things I am selling on craigslist was having dinner with the family and insisted that we take some food when we stopped by.

At first I resisted. I noticed resistance and realized that the circumstances called for a shift in perspective. Sometimes, social circumstances in lay life call for changing behavior? Anyone have experience with this in their lives, especially when dealing with food?

Then, we talked about Dhamma the whole meal for like an hour and a half, so it ended with people getting closer to the Dhamma.

Additana is still in effect.

OK, thanks for listening.

with metta,
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Re: Why one meal a day?

Postby David N. Snyder » Sat Feb 18, 2012 5:31 am

Chi wrote:Today, I took a meal in the evening when my mom's friend who is moving back to Japan whose things I am selling on craigslist was having dinner with the family and insisted that we take some food when we stopped by.

Then, we talked about Dhamma the whole meal for like an hour and a half, so it ended with people getting closer to the Dhamma.


:thumbsup:

Good move. You don't want to give the appearance of being dogmatic-fundamentalist about it, which would give a bad image for Theravada Buddhists. There is no need to be completely inflexible on the meal time, unless you are a monk or nun.
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Re: Why one meal a day?

Postby ground » Sun Feb 19, 2012 8:04 am

Chi wrote:At first I resisted. I noticed resistance and realized that the circumstances called for a shift in perspective. Sometimes, social circumstances in lay life call for changing behavior? Anyone have experience with this in their lives, especially when dealing with food?

Resistance is a good appearance to work with and to dissolve it in appropriate contexts.
One should abandon ritualistic attitudes whereever they make themselves felt.
However at the same time one should not overestimate "social circumstances" since these are most often just another sort of "trap".

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only eating breakfast

Postby markf » Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:28 pm

Any tips on only eating breakfast?

I sort of decided through introspection to do this a while ago, not do do with Buddhism. I'v just realized my beliefs concour with what monks do.

I'v been to a couple of meditation classes at a Burmese vihara but not for a long time.

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Re: only eating breakfast

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Fri Feb 24, 2012 2:13 pm

I wouldn't recommend it if you're doing any kind of physical work, and especially not if you do anything like driving where being inattentive may kill someone. It is OK for monks to eat only one meal a day, if they meditate all day. I eat most of my food in one meal after walking for alms, but I also eat some fruit or other light snacks before midday. I don't do any heavy manual work.
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Re: only eating breakfast

Postby David N. Snyder » Fri Feb 24, 2012 4:06 pm

markf wrote:Any tips on only eating breakfast?


It can be done, if you eat quite a bit of food for breakfast, but otherwise as Bhante said, you may get tired or less attentive later. You may also get too hungry in the late afternoon / early evening. I have found that for me, it works better eating later in the morning, at or close to 12 noon to 1 pm.
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Re: only eating breakfast

Postby ground » Sat Feb 25, 2012 2:06 am

markf wrote:Any tips on only eating breakfast?

It is far more beneficial to abandon delight in eating than to ritualistically cling to such a rule. If delight is abandoned eating will function to just keep the body alive.
If you are eating only breakfast but then before breafast are greedy for food then it is unwholesome conduct.
But if you can abandon any delight and greed and still eat only for breakfast then its fine. But actually there is no additional benefit from following the "only breakfast" rule if you abandoned delight and greed for food in any possible situation.
The "only breakfast" rule may however be beneficial to get to know the ignorance arising from the body in dependence of the nutriment edible food.

"There are these four nutriments for the maintenance of beings who have come into being or for the support of those in search of a place to be born. Which four? Physical food, gross or refined; contact as the second, intellectual intention the third, and consciousness the fourth. These are the four nutriments for the maintenance of beings who have come into being or for the support of those in search of a place to be born.

"Where there is passion, delight, & craving for the nutriment of physical food, consciousness lands there and increases. Where consciousness lands and increases, there is the alighting of name-&-form. Where there is the alighting of name-&-form, there is the growth of fabrications. Where there is the growth of fabrications, there is the production of renewed becoming in the future. Where there is the production of renewed becoming in the future, there is future birth, aging, & death, together, I tell you, with sorrow, affliction, & despair.

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html


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Re: Why one meal a day?

Postby Jhana4 » Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:08 am

Eating one meal a day is probably a good thing for a monk doing nothing but meditating all day, all of the time. Such monks aren't the norm. In the course of my sutta studies I learned that the one meal a day rule was also implemented to not overburden the community that supports the monks.....either in resources or being disturbed several times a day by the monks.

On retreats and Buddhist holiday observances I've kept the no eating before noon rule.

I don't think it works so well in reality, in modern times for ordinary people ( not meditating 8 or more hours a day ).

People end up eating all of their food clumped together. I don't think that is good for a person's blood sugar, health, energy levels or clarity of mind.

As with many religious customs and rules, it probably made sense for a situation which no longer exists.
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One mistake is to cling to the literal text and miss the inner principles.
The second mistake is to recognize the principles but not apply them to your own mind, so that you waste time and just make them into causes of entanglement.
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Re: Why one meal a day?

Postby Cittasanto » Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:50 am

hi Jhana4,
As someone who has lived in a monastery eating "at one time" (as the rule is, the one meal is a dutangha practice) it is more than possible to do it even with work.
remember it is advised that the majority of food should be taken in the morning, and each subsequent meal should be smaller than the last for normal people - eat like a king at breakfast, the middle classes at lunch, and a pauper at dinner.
ones weight levels out and the body knows if it needs more food, it is just a case of paying attention to the bodies needs, and the situation does indeed still exist.

Jhana4 wrote:Eating one meal a day is probably a good thing for a monk doing nothing but meditating all day, all of the time. Such monks aren't the norm. In the course of my sutta studies I learned that the one meal a day rule was also implemented to not overburden the community that supports the monks.....either in resources or being disturbed several times a day by the monks.

On retreats and Buddhist holiday observances I've kept the no eating before noon rule.

I don't think it works so well in reality, in modern times for ordinary people ( not meditating 8 or more hours a day ).

People end up eating all of their food clumped together. I don't think that is good for a person's blood sugar, health, energy levels or clarity of mind.

As with many religious customs and rules, it probably made sense for a situation which no longer exists.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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