Sunday, September 23, 2012

How to Improve Your Relationship With Food Part 2: How to Enjoy Eating

Change Your Attitude Towards Food



Food is essential for sustaining life. Most of us do not live under the direct pressures of survival, meaning we can afford to anticipate our next meals during a very lengthy time frame. Most of us can rest assured that our caloric needs will be met. With this security, we are able to luxuriate in the pleasures of food.

Yet some of us forget that food is not only for enjoyment- it fuels our bodies and changes the quality of our life. A diet consisting of junk food will render an individual weak and unhealthy. 

The manner with which we eat also contributes to our wellness. Those who eat without mindfulness and appreciation tend to choose unhealthy foods and unhealthy quantities. Those who become afraid of food battle with eating disorders and are constantly fighting to maintain or gain control over their power struggles.

In order to establish a healthy relationship with food, one must find balance between the quality of food and the quality of their attitude towards it. 

Choosing Good Food

In order to enjoy food and fully benefit from it, one must be wise about what they consume. 

No matter what diet ones chooses, the simple truth boils down to the fact that simple whole food is the healthiest.

Appreciate the flavors of nature. 

Stop buying fake, processed foods- these are laden with preservatives and chemicals which warp the body's cravings for natural sustenance. 

Read the ingredients list. Try to prepare most of your food at home. Research what you put into your body. 

Keep it simple.

Getting Personal

When you eat, pay attention to how a certain food makes you feel.

If you experience discomfort or sluggishness after consuming certain foods, you probably shouldn't be eating them.

Everyone is different. Don't put the entirety of your trust in someone else's research and opinion. 

Take the time to take note of these effects and trust your honest diagnosis without warping it with preconceptions and frustration. 

Assess yourself in a straightforward manner.

Practice Mindfulness and Appreciation

A well prepared meal deserves your full attention.

Take the time to sit comfortably without distractions whilst enjoying your food.

Calm your mind and be mindful of your appetite- gauge your level of hunger and thirst. Do not start eating only because you are bored. If you are eating because you want to experience a new food or indulge, allow yourself to do so but do not push yourself to a point of sickness due to overeating.

Take note of all the flavors, textures, aromas, and subtleties of your dish. Chew thoroughly. Smile.

Enjoy food with the pleasant company. Bond between bites. Nurture the atmosphere with warmth and friendliness. 

Express gratitude, internally or externally. You are able to delight in  a pleasurable meal that gives you the energy to function. 

Keep It Simple

Don't over think your diet.

Would you rather be 8% body fat year round while eating nothing but pre-measured health foods or would you rather be healthy enough and fit enough most of the time to afford a few indulgences here and there?

Focus on portion control. Eat when your hungry. Stop when your full. 

Be grateful for your food, and choose food you'll be grateful for.

Enjoy.