For the first time in a long while, I was in a busy, young and bustling city: Ho Chi Minh, formerly known as Saigon. The energy was frenetic with construction work going on all night and people rushing, rushing, rushing. I can sense the excitement of the people in this vibrant city that is busy creating its new self.
But it was hard on my system. It reminded me of my time in Jakarta, where the air was polluted from the rush of cars and motorbikes, and fresh fruits and vegetables were depleted of nutrients due to over-farming. I used to spend literally hours each day obsessing over food – is this organic really organic? etc. I remember too, asking my yoga students to “Breathe deeply” and then thinking to myself, hmmmm, probably not. Outdoor exercise seemed counter-productive as the streets were polluted and it took hours in the car to get out to open spaces.
I am afraid I do not have a concrete answer for keeping well for the long-term in such cities, other than drink a lot of water, drink green smoothies (organic as much as possible), eat non-fried food, go to a gym with good air filter (in a shopping mall, possibly), rest, meditate.
I came home and tanked myself up with green smoothies and went for a long run on the beach 🙂