Historically women have been the home cook and despite a rise in men being the main kitchen resident women still produce the majority of the world’s meals. But making meals isn’t just about sustenance it’s about nourishing the hearts and souls of our loved ones. We make favourite meals, medicinal meals, meals that recognise traditions and celebrations. The constant of food reflects the constants of love and protection that women across the globe feel for their families.
Nourishment in the Face of War
As the unfathomable events in the Ukraine have unfolded over the last two weeks, the nourishing power of women has been evident amongst the destruction and horror. Despite their own fear we’ve watched women fleeing war yet still producing food for their children from bags and pockets. We saw women greeting families and the elderly at many border crossings with meals and compassion. We read about women across the globe galvanising communities to send food and supplies to help Ukrainians protect their families as they would protect their own. These actions demonstrate the knowledge that women have about the power of nourishing each other, especially in the face of a war no woman has incited.
Peace at the Dinner Table
Seeing displaced families sit down to a meal in their new, temporary homes with families they didn’t know a fortnight ago, shows us that humanity is inextricably linked to food and nourishment. Sharing a meal together is fundamental to our humanity and women foster this crucial part of our lives every single day. Sat at our own dinner table we talked about the families being torn apart, for nothing more than the greed and delusions of men in the Kremlin, and we felt so helpless. We have donated money and items but it still doesn’t feel enough. By the weekend I realised my mental health was being eroded and that allowing it to get worse wouldn’t help my children, wouldn’t make a difference to the Ukraine and wasn’t doing the best by myself. I had to actively turn off the news and nourish my body and mind so that I can continue to be part of a powerful network of women across the globe who bring love and nourishment to their families, friends and communities. Women are instrumental to the wellbeing of this world and that has been so evident these past two weeks.
Foods that Help us Cope
There are foods that help our bodies cope with anxiety and trauma. They are foods that help the nervous system to regulate, slow blood pressure and support the production of chemicals in our brains that help us maintain perspective. Here are some of those foods that help us regulate our bodies during times of global and personal stress:
- Salmon – see salmon recipes
- Eggs – see egg recipes
- Yoghurt – see yoghurt recipes
- Avocados – see avocado recipes
- Beetroot – see beetroot recipes
- Porridge – heart hero porridge
- Chamomile Tea
- Pistachios, Cashews and Brazil Nuts – see cashew nut recipes
- Pumpkin Seeds – see pumpkin seed recipes
- Dark Chocolate
- Turmeric – see turmeric recipes
Resources to support the Ukraine
This article has a very useful list of ways you can help the Ukraine. In the UK you can donate money to a number of charities directly supporting the 1 million+ Ukrainian refugees.
*The Red Cross
*The World Health Organization
Remember that UK tax payers can add Gift Aid to any donation at no extra cost to themselves which adds 25% to the donation.