• Dr. Patty Hlava

DIALOGUES IN THE PRODUCE AISLE: LETTING THE BODY SPEAK



When I go to the grocery store, I enter armed with my list. The list is crafted each week with my husband as we plan out what (a) how we wanted to feel in the upcoming week and (b) what we want to eat to support that feeling.


Each week, we sit down and spend a few minutes looking at our schedules and plan a menu. Then I go through the kitchen, see what we have, and identify what I need to buy. This 10-minute practice makes grocery shopping super easy, quick, and efficient. Since I now don’t have the think about what we’re going to eat, it also frees up a ton of my mental energy throughout the week so I can focus on other things.


Sometimes though, even with all the planning, my body starts talking to me. I’ve learned that when it does that—I need to listen. I’ve also learned that the best way to respond is to play a little game. I’ll walk through the product aisle and see what I’m really drawn toward. I’ll keep asking: what’s speaking to me?


This happened to me this week.


I noticed that my body was feeling heavy—almost lethargic. It had been a heavy week with lots of work and lots of sitting at the computer.



As I wandered the produce aisle, I noticed out of the corner of my eye dragon fruit. It’s bright pink is always eye-catching, but as I stood before it, I felt nothing aside from admiration of its beautiful color. Right next to the dragon fruit sat a basket of star fruit. Star Fruit!


My body immediately felt light. I picked one up and felt a resounding, “Yes, please!” echo internally. Into my shopping cart they went.


I also found myself surprisingly drawn to the oranges. This is quite rare for me; however, I listened. I grabbed a couple as my body whispered: juice.


Now, juice is not something that I typically drink outside of summer, or when I’m in particularly warm climates; however, this heaviness in my body was quite openly pleading for some of the light, energizing zest of these vibrant and playful fruits.

What I love about this experience is the gentle reminder it gives me. It’s so easy for me to get caught in my head and get pretty rigid about things. My mind can get attached to “the list” and things needing to be “just so”.


One of the habits that I teach in my Awaken program is “easeful living”. A key aspect of this habit is the practice of staying open—of allowing some flexibility, grace, and playfulness to be present. It’s a softening.


In this softening, we deepen our relationship with ourselves. We allow ourselves to be open to receive—to receive input, love, and connection. This can look like all kinds of things. It can even look like walking through the vibrancy of the produce aisle, setting your list aside, and letting your body respond to the food around you. It may look like having a conversation with star fruit.


It was in this opening that I could hear my body’s desire for more levity and play mirrored to me the qualities of star fruit.


I went home inspired, and made some juice!


Here’s the recipe:


Star Fruit Juice:

· Wash star fruit well with produce brush

· Cut the whole fruit into chunks

· Put cut fruit into VitaMix (or other high power blender):

· Add 1 cup water per Star Fruit

· Add juice of ½ lime per Star Fruit

· Add 1 pinch of coconut sugar


Blend on high for 1 minute.

Pour and enjoy!






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