I have just returned from running my annual women's wellness retreat in Abruzzo, Italy, and feel drawn to share some observations with you.
Every time I have traveled to the land of 'La Dolce Vita', I am amazed at the quality of life of those beautiful Italians.
They enjoy their food, they enjoy their wine, they eat gluten, they take naps, they stay up late and they are healthy and happy.
How do they do this?
ITALIANS TAKE TIME TO ENJOY LIFE
Italians relish mealtime.
They don't take for granted the benefits of preparing and sitting to dine on their meals. They take deep pleasure in shopping, preparing and consuming food. They sit down to eat and they don't rush through meals. They gather around the table with friends and family.
Italians eat fresh food.
Rather than heading to large grocery stores on a weekly basis, Italians make their daily visits to farm markets, butchers, fish markets and bakers for their daily meals. They consume a plethora of fish, vegetables, nuts, seeds and olive oil. Countries that follow the Mediterranean diet have been shown to have lower rates of heart disease and cancer.
Italians drink red wine on a daily basis.
This is a daily glass consumed in moderation. Most of the local wine you can access in Italia is grown bio-dynamically, that means grown and made without the preservatives and chemicals that lead to headaches and hangovers.
Siestas, known as Riposos, are a non-negotiable.
'During riposo, most public places such as shops, businesses, churches and some restaurants lock their doors and take a snooze or a long lunch. The hours vary during this time, and begins anywhere from noon to 4pm...sometimes even later... They rest and then reopen for the evening. When we stayed in the sea village 'Termoli', most businesses did not reopen until 6pm and didn't really come alive until after 9pm...
Italians follow the biorhythms of resting and conserving energy midday.
I love witnessing the sacred rituals of mealtime, connection and living life in Italia. It inspires me and reminds that we can learn so much from this way of life.