I want to share this wonderful posting and video where Elder Jan Longboat shares teaching about food. This incredibly beautiful woman is a member of the Turtle Clan of Six Nations, a traditional herbalist, healer and Elder who has created Dotah’s house. I am so grateful for this video because I did not have the opportunity to learn this kind of information from my grandmother.
Everything Jan says about the importance of following the cycles of spring, summer, fall and winter with regard to our food choices make sense. ”When we eat the right foods, when we eat a balanced diet….long ago we ate a diet of ”slow” foods…eating slow foods keeps our body in balance.” ”The old people used to say, your food is medicine…because it’s so full of vitamins and minerals.” She also talks about the legacy of residential schools and how the children taken away from their parents missed out on learning so many of the things that created such a beautiful and healthy way of life.
Her words are especially poignant for me because it speaks to the legacy of shame my mother felt because she was Métis and how it has shaped my own family. I love that Jan is using the internet and video to share her wisdom and it’s my hope that our Métis elders will learn from her example and be able to share similar teachings with those of us who want to regain our culture and heritage.
I was first alerted to this video at: