An Italian Self Care Tip: Practice Slow Living
Life in Italy moves at a different pace. There isn’t the endless grind or hustle and bustle of America. People slow down.
Indeed, slow living is an art that the Italians have perfected over the course of many generations. They take their time enjoying the nice things in life. A small glass of wine. The perfect espresso. Local tomatoes.
This doesn’t mean that Italians are lazy, or unaccomplished. Rather, they have discovered how to incorporate balance into all aspects of their lives, with numerous health and social benefits.
Here in the US, we have lots to learn from the Italians. Self care is a perpetual buzzword, but perhaps all we need to do is slow down.
Slow Living is Italian Self Care
When was the last time you slowed down, took care of yourself, and savored “la dolce vita,” the sweet life?
In Italy, self care isn’t a luxury, it’s part of everyday life. By slowing down and making the most of every moment, the Italian people are caring for themselves and each other.
Slow living isn’t about taking an unnecessarily long time to complete basic tasks or driving under the speed limit. Instead, it’s about making the most of the time that you have and being intentional with how you use it.
For example, Italian people aren’t afraid to linger over a delicious meal with loved ones. They will enjoy every course including dessert and an espresso to finish. No rushing. Time at the table solidifies social bonds and helps improve the mental health of all.
Likewise, Italians recognize the value in taking a break to sit in the sun with a biscotti or a small piece of cheese. Pausing to savor the moment reinvigorates them and allows them to make the most of their work time as well as their leisure.
Good Food is Italian Self Care (And Health Care)
So much of Italian slow living is about savoring food. The Slow Food Movement, an international organization devoted to preserving local food traditions, was founded in Italy after all.
Good food takes time. From the patient processes involved in growing local vegetables and meats, to the care given to producing foods like our handcrafted pasta - you can’t rush quality.
And, likewise, good food deserves to be savored. Self care is taking the time to sit down with a perfect plum and truly appreciate it, or gather with friends to enjoy a bottle of wine and charcuterie board.
In Italy, good food goes beyond self care and becomes part of formalized healthcare as well.
Italian doctors have been known to literally prescribe parmigiano reggiano cheese to old, young, and sick patients in Italy. The high levels of protein, essential amino acids, calcium, magnesium and more found in even a small serving of the cheese are hugely beneficial, and delicious.
Furthermore, there is an Italian saying “il vino fa buon sangue” which loosely translated means “good wine makes good blood.” It may sound like an excuse to open up a bottle, but research has found connections between moderate red wine consumption and heart health.
Whether it’s being used for medical purposes or as part of improving everyday life, good food is a crucial element of Italian culture and slow living.
How to Bring Slow Living into Your Busy Life
Adding slow living and Italian self care into your busy life doesn’t have to mean quitting your job or moving to Italy (though we won’t stop you). All it takes is finding moments to pause.
In the busy day-to-day of American life, it can be hard to fit in any time for yourself. But, that makes it all the more important. By taking the principles of slow living and applying them to your own life, you can feel more relaxed, connected to those around you, and appreciative of all life has to offer.
We recommend slowing down by:
- Sitting outside with your morning coffee instead of drinking it while you read your emails
- Going for a walk as a family after school
- Enjoying a charcuterie board with your partner before making dinner
- Having a biscotti after lunch, or dinner, or both
- Spending time on the couch with your pup, without your phone
At Nicola’s our goal is to make your slow living as easy and delicious as possible. Good food takes time, but, when we’ve done the hard work for you, all you have to do is enjoy the results.
A great place to start your Italian self care journey is with our handmade biscotti. We make them using the best ingredients with no preservatives or shortcuts so that you can add a bit of sweetness and self care into every day. Try them for yourself!