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Nutrition

HIO: Chef Imani

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HIO: Chef Imani

The HIO Retreat is all about healing from the inside out and for many of us, our healing starts in our guts.  This year Team HIO partnered with Chef Imani to ensure the food was not only delicious but nutritious and VEGAN

Chef Imani came and showed the fuck out in the kitchen!

Chef Imani came and showed the fuck out in the kitchen!

Everything she made was orgasmic, organic, vegan, gluten-free, and made with hella love.

EVERYTHING. WAS. DELICIOUS. 

Menu:

Breakfast: Blueberry muffins served with whipped coconut cream and organic fruit.

Lunch: Quinoa salad and chickpea patties.

Dinner: Potato Curry. 

 

Chef Imani HAND CHOPPED all this organic fruit!!! So BLESSED to have her!

Chef Imani HAND CHOPPED all this organic fruit!!! So BLESSED to have her!

Everyone LOVED the blueberry muffins!

Everyone LOVED the blueberry muffins!

The BEST quinoa salad ever!

The BEST quinoa salad ever!

LUNCH

LUNCH

As you see, the HIO Retreat is rooted in healing. We aim to provide a space to facilitate your own healing process from the inside out. We are not the average cannabis retreat.

We are THE Cannabis Retreat!

The HIO Retreat is an intentional cannabis wellness experience. Having Chef Imani provide an organic, plant-based menu was intentional. We wanted every person to be well fed by a healer. Chef Imani is a healer and her medicine is food.   

Look at Amanda, watching as Chef Imani blesses her fruit with Coconut Cream!

Look at Amanda, watching as Chef Imani blesses her fruit with Coconut Cream!

-Team HIO wants to thank Chef Imani for sharing her time and energy with us! Thank you for being such a beautiful, generous, and loving spirit! We can't wait to see what you cook up for us next year! Healing Inside Out will continue to be an educational and healing experience for communities of color. Stay tuned for more pictures!

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Battling My Depression

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Battling My Depression

Depression is a gift I never wanted. Taking the time to understand my depression has reframed the way I care for myself and those around me. I tend to carry burdens that are not mine. When the weight of those burdens and some other things in my life became unbearable, I slipped into a particularly vicious cycle of depression. I started getting re-triggered by people, things, and emotions I thought I had overcome. During this time, I intentionally used cannabis, essential oils, physical activity, therapy, journaling, nature, nutrition, and the power of my sisterhood to battle the depression I was experiencing. 

I choose to treat my depression holistically because it is what works best for my body. Depression is different for everyone. It may take some trial and error before you figure out the formula that works best for you. My battles with depression taught me the importance of unapologetic truth-telling, self-care, wellness, and love. Over time I have learned that when one of these things are lacking, my depression starts to resurface. While I am not a doctor or an expert on depression I would like to share what has been helpful to me along the way. Below you will find a list of eight tools that may be beneficial to you or someone you know battling with depression.
 

Cannabis

When I am feeling depressed I intentionally surround myself with smells that evoke happy memories and give me energy.  I love using essential oils because I can keep them in my purse and have a personal aromatherapy session anytime I need one.  My favorite essential oil is called

Cheer Up Buttercup and it is a blend of lemon, lime, grapefruit, and bergamot oil.  This oil is designed to make you feel energized, refreshed and uplifted. 
 

Physical Activities

Numerous studies have shown that regular physical activity can reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. Outside of the mental benefits of having a regular physical activity practice, there are also physical benefits such as improving sleep patterns, lowering blood pressure, reducing body fat, increasing your energy levels and you might be able to fit those old jeans in the back of your closet again! Some of my favorite physical activities are yoga and tabata style exercises. Another favorite of mine is sex. Yes, sex. An orgasm a day may just keep the depression away.
 

Therapy

I wholeheartedly believe in the power of therapy and mental wellness. If you are blessed to have medical insurance, take advantage of it and find a therapist in your network that resonates with your spirit.  If you don’t have access to medical coverage or you are looking for another option check out 7Cups. This platform is an affordable, on-demand, emotional health service that works by connecting real people to real listeners in a one-on-one chat. Anyone can talk about whatever is on their mind with trained, compassionate listeners. The 7 Cups of Tea listener doesn’t judge, try to solve problems, or tell you what to do. They just listen and empathize. Sometimes that is all we need. 
 

Journaling

My depression is like a wet blanket of emotions or nothingness that I can’t shake off, making me exhausted both physically and mentally. It can also make me irritable, disinterested, and very pessimistic. I intentionally stay away from indica dominant strains when I am depressed because from my experiences they only amplify my depressed state. Instead, I prefer to consume sativa dominant cannabis strains. Especially strains with limonene terpenes. Limonene is great for treating depression because it has the ability to elevate one’s mood and reduce stress. My go to strains when I am depressed are XJ-13Lambs BreadSour Diesel, and Jack Herer.
 

Essential Oils

Journaling is an amazing tool for those trying to become more in sync with their triggers, thoughts, and emotions by recording and reflecting private thoughts.  Keeping a journal allows you to process the situation or experience by recording and reflecting on it. Remember, there is no right way to journal. Just make time for yourself on a consistent basis to record and reflect. Also, make time to go back and read over your thoughts, you might be surprised at the connections you make yourself.
 

Nature

Take advantage of Mother Nature and go outside. Feel the sun kiss your skin. Sit by the ocean and absorb the salt. Go for a hike and work up a sweat. Sit in the grass and read a book. Look at the stars and the moon. One of my favorite things to do is to sit near a body of water and meditate. 
 

Food

We are what we eat so it is important to maintain a healthy diet because food can affect our moods. Yes, there is a proven connection between our moods and our foods. When I am hungry I tend to get angry and irritable very fast. When I eat a lot of starch I tend to feel sluggish and bloated. I encourage you to really listen to your body and figure out a healthy diet that works for you. 
 

Community

When you are depressed it can be tempting to shut your friends, family, and community out but this is when you really need them the most. Reach out to your friends. Tell them you need their love and understanding more than ever. Allow them to show up for you. Surround yourself with your loved ones. 

#HIOCommunity: Do you suffer from depression? If so, what tools do you use to battle your depression? Is cannabis one of those tools? If so, how have your experiences been?

Additional Resources:

Exercise & Depression

Food & Depression

Nature & Depression

10 Reasons to have an Orgasm

-AshleyAsatu

Photo Credit: Bloom Farms

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