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Yoga for Foodies: Sinful Delights in a Sacred Setting? Gluttons Rejoice, Kindle Veg Debate

in YD News

yoga-for-foodiesAre you one of those mat-toting martini-soaking epicurean yogi infidels? Cheers! You came to the right blog post.“Yoga for Foodies” has hit the NY Times (When Chocolate and Chakras Collide) – it’s officially a trend! Even Gawker had to chime in. And really, what’s better than sweating it up on the yoga mat detoxifying your system, and immediately following that with a buddha belly full of scrumptious sinful delights?! Nothing! According to yogi somelier David Romanelli (yeahdave) whose occasional Yoga+Wine nights have reached new heights in hedonistic rituals.

Why not stretch out before indulging in ravioli stuffed with spinach-cashew ricotta, pine nut pesto and sundried tomato sauce? asks Dave on his website. A lot of salivating yogis have taken him up on that question attending $75 classes, like the one at Exhale Spa profiled in the NYT article, where yoga is just the first course served on the mat. The amuse-bouche if you will.

The words of Ziggy Marley’s “Love Is My Religion” floated over 30 people lying on  yoga mats in a steamy, dim loft above Madison Avenue on Friday. All had signed up for a strange new hybrid of physical activity: first an hour of vigorous, sweaty yoga, then a multicourse dinner of pasta, red wine and chocolate. As soon as the lights went up, dinner was served on the floor: an (almost) seamless transition designed to allow the yogis to taste, smell and digest in a heightened state of awareness.

We hope you like your fungi with a side of toe cheese (sorry!). Kinda ick though are we right?

Labeling his brand as “every man yoga” Dave has really latched on to something sticky, and it’s not your cushy mat or the drippings from your rhubarb compote, it’s pleasure seekers! It’s the expansion of the “traditional” yoga practice to heathens people who love chocolate, wine, and even bacon! (and frankly, the orgasm of enjoying it all together). Is that so wrong? Well one would imagine the yogi’s diet is a big bone of contention, as we know – should a yogi be veg? a compassionate carnivore?

“The very first teaching of yoga forbids us to eat meat,” said Eva Grubler, director of training at Dharma Yoga in New York. And Sharon Gannon, co-owner of Jivamukti and author of Yoga and Vegetarianism, would surely agree!

So what of this new trend: Yoga and Food? Is working your glutes to get your glutton on a good pairing?

It sounds fun, but for 75 bucks? Anyways, we said it before and we’ll say it again…with all the saucy body liquids, libations and chakra opening just try and keep your kundalini in your pants!

EarlierYoga+Wine Debauchery

Topic du Jour: What Comes First the Chicken or the Yoga? The Great Vegetarian Debate

“Taking Woodstock” Film, Are Today’s Yoga Hippies Smoking Enough Weed?

13 comments… add one
  • Gosh I went back and forth on this. I don’t think vegetarian or vegan diet for me would make me a better yogi. I think my attitude, thoughts, actions, intentions, caring about others in the world around me, and sure taking care of my body (which by the way, a vegetarian/vegan diet is not necessarily better but could be, been there, done it all)….those are the things that make one a better yogi every day and closer to that stillness of mind, body and spirit…..! But it’s a learning path no doubt. Thanks for the thoughts here.

  • Absolutely agree with Farnoosh…
    yoga and food lust, a trend?? I can hear the yoga buzz over this all the way from Montana. thanks for the fun commentary on the big dramatic NYT article over, well, nothin’. Here’s mine: http://bit.ly/9zTthF
    Namaste, and bon appétit.

  • If the ultimate goal of yoga is enlightenment, with its non-dual state of awareness where everything is one… then I hardly see any reason why yogis *must* be vegetarian.

    “The very first teaching of yoga forbids us to eat meat,” said Eva Grubler… oh REALLY? The very first teaching? Yeah, okay, whatever… NOT.

    Is the bible/Christianity the only tradition with outdated ideas? I think not. There’s this theory that because meat is tamasic, it’s meant to hinder the process of awakening/enlightenment. But really, if a yogi can learn to melt snow with the power of their mind/body, then surely they can just as easily burn up tamasic fuel.

    Okay, besides that I think the whole eating on the yoga mat thing is kinda gross. And just another way of luring people to yoga class, instead of letting yoga do it’s thing without the help of a gourmet meal.

  • Sarah

    I’m calling the next trend: Nude Foodie Yoga Dance Party! 😉

  • sammi

    what is it with all the yogi “literalists” and their statements that one MUST be a vegetarian/vegan in order to be a yogi?? they sound an awful lot like fundamentalist christians who say “it’s in the bible and the bible is the word of God”.
    get over yourselves people and make up your own mind and what to eat. stop thinking you need to adhere to something someone wrote down eons ago.
    for all the self-righteous veggies/vegans out their who say we must not eat meat because it goes against AHIMSA, i have a question for you — can i assume you also practice BRAHMACHARYA too? (ie you are celibate 100%, even those of you that are married)? If not, why not? It’s one of the Yama/Nyamas folks. Can’t just pick and choose which ones you want to follow. That would be hypocritical.


  • yogak

    I first heard about the whole “Chocolate and Chakra” phenomenon when waiting at a said vegan’s yoga studio in nyc. One teacher whispered to the group about how foul and evil this idea was but not because of the food as much as the alcohol.

    I felt compelled to read the article and several blogs with comments to gain some perspective. I wanted to disagree with the teacher because of the judgement she was exuding.

    Truthfully, I find it sort of crazy how many people are for this. Someone else mentioned that many church doctrines are outdated and thus yogis should modernize. I respect that but when does it stop? How much is too much?

    If we say it is ok to eat meat (ahimsa) and consume decadent food and alcohol, which are in direct conflict with non-hoarding and sense withdrawl, right in the yoga studio; what comes next?

    People want to fit some yoga asana into their lives and that is wonderful. That said, what is being done to fit into a yoga lifestyle? No sacrifice, flaunting of material wealth w/over priced meals and cloths? I guess we are all just trying our best but before we go making the devout out to be tyrants, how about considering their perspective.
    Om Shani

  • yogak

    Btw, “celibacy” as described in the pradipika refers to intimacy with more than one person. So celibacy does not mean complete sexual abstinance but it also does not mean serial monogamy either.

  • sammi


    Brahmacharya IS very much about celibacy. What rock have you been living under? Fortunately, some present day yogis/yoginnis that write about, teach about the yamas and niyamas question the strict interpretation that has traditionally been ascribed to brahmacharya. Check out various yoga website, including yogajournal.com, read what some of the “big” name yogis/yoginnis are saying. You will discover lots of discussion on the role/usefulness of celibacy (brahmacharya). For the record, I personally think it’s unuseful.

    Ken Wilber sums up all the sanctimonious cow-towing to writings/sayings/beliefs/doctrines:

    “dogmas or given beliefs are precisely what hinders the emergence of deeper truths and wider vision. —— “There is more spirituality in reason’s denial of God than there is in myth’s affirmation of God, precisely because there is more depth. (And the transrational, in turn, discloses yet more depth, yet more Spirit, than either myth or reason).”

  • yogak

    for the record, my career as a yoga and holistic professional has kept me quite current in the field (hardly living under a rock). as well, i am quite aware that brahmacharya is associated with celibacy i meant to shed light on the contradictions in the texts.

    sammi, i respect your well researched perspective but am confused by the tone that you use. you sound like you like the practice of yoga and food because it is more inclusive, no? so why do you use phrases like, “living under a rock?” that hardly sounds inclusive.

    as well, “big names” are really of little interest to true yogi’s, right? you sound like you practice, so would you throw your beliefs under the bus because yoga journal published something that ran counter to your beliefs? no, right?

    i just wanted to throw out a point for consideration. i do think you chose a wonderful quote and it is very valid and worth deep consideration. i enjoy your thinking. i just wish you would explain why YOU feel so opposed to my points. you seem extremely bright and i am interested in your perspective.

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