For many years, I was an avid drinker and a happy drunk - from the first taste of alcohol, I was hooked.
While drinking I could be the life and soul of the party, express myself, be an entertainer and let my Leo ascendant come out to play. Alcohol seemed to fulfil all of my needs – for confidence, self-expression, connection, fun, hilarity and excitement.
However, the next day there was a price to pay. Headache, nausea, self-loathing… Everything I borrowed in positivity the night before had to be repaid, with interest.
The answer to my teenage woes – low self esteem and a shyness which barred me from all that I wanted – turned out to be a pact with the devil.
I kept that pact for 15 years. Obedient servant, I paid my dues in preference to facing those parts of myself I abhorred head on. Fast forward another 10 or so years and the causes of my misconnection with life are more obvious. Much personal development work, and a better understanding of the role of nutrition in regulating mood and emotion, offers up solutions which are far more life affirming.
I now understand how the levels of Dopamine, Serotonin, GABA and cortisol determine my perspective on life. These organic chemicals call the tunes to which we dance. They govern whether we are happy or sad, optimistic or pessimistic, connected or lonely, they are determinants of our mood and fate.
With time, I have learned how to dance with these partners, even to become a conductor of these finely tuned instruments, directing the orchestra of my emotions rather than be a puppet to the vagaries of my physiology.
For far too long the ridiculously oversimplified calorific model of food consumption had kept me stupefied to the link between nutrition and mood. Understanding how what we ingest changes the levels of these key neurotransmitters allowed for my switch in role.
But, to re-imagine alcohol, first I had to make peace with it. I asked myself: What is it good for? What positive aspects does it have?
The answers which came through were beautifully simple: It bestows relaxation; It assists social connection; It brings novelty, fun and excitement. Those qualities are good!
Realising this, the question then became how can these experiences be facilitated through healthy means? How can I convey these using herbs, spices and nutrients?
With a clear destination of the emotion of Bliss in mind and my own body as a sensitive divining tool, the process of choosing which flavours, smells, spices, herbs, mushrooms, amino acids, vitamins and frequencies to combine to achieve this, could begin…