Your relationship with food
I wanted to talk about something which many of us actually aren’t consciously aware of…our relationship with food.
Now this is something which I feel is super personal. Physically, people should eat to sustain themselves, but psychologically, this relationship goes much deeper.
Over-eating for example, defines many people’s relationship with food and this is down to several factors. Between work, life, travel and partying, your body may not actually have a routine, this means that you are hungry all the time because you don’t have set times in the day that you eat, i.e. breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Over-eating can also be down to the fact that your body lacks proper nutrients, so psychologically, your brain knows that it has to consume more nutrients. If you are however, never eating the foods which give you the right nutrients, this can become a vicious cycle of gaining weight, feeling guilty, overeating and feeling unhappy.
For a lot of people, food is a stress reliever, a comforter, an emotional blanket. This is one relationship which if you feel you can relate to, is very important that you address.
We often think that food can fill a void in our life, and, rather than realising or understanding this, we turn to food as our support mechanism.
Whether you can’t stop consuming and/or thinking about food, or whether you don’t eat enough, binge eat, eat unhealthily or eat so healthily you can’t enjoy a small treat…Your relationship with food does indeed express your psychological relationship with others and more importantly, with yourself.
I wanted to put together a few short tips for you on your healing journey when it comes to food. If you feel like your relationship with food is fine, it’s always good to also know the following in order to keep you happy, healthy and glowing!
I believe that the first step is always awareness. Firstly, try and understand your eating patterns, what is your relationship with food? This will help you understand how to solve your foodie issues.
If you eat too much, try and control your portion size, eat with your tummy rather than your eyes. If you don’t eat enough, eat the foods that you genuinely like, make eating something fun which you actually want to do regularly.
Mindful eating is the best thing you can do when it comes to improving your relationship with food. If you feel like you eat too fast and before you know it, you have inhaled your plate and feel overly full, slow it down.
Enjoy all senses when comes to eating, turn it into an experience.
Look at the bright colours, smell the wonderful scents coming from your food, taste it…I mean really taste it! Which flavours can you feel, which herbs, which spices…Feel the texture on your tongue, what does your food sound like? Is it crunchy, like fresh salad, is it salty like an oyster is it hot like a chili, is it cold like ice cream? Enjoy your food and take it all in.
We often eat whilst we do other things; watching TV, talking or on the go. Being mindful will not only help with digestion, but also you feel fuller, quicker meaning you will not over eat and will stop when you’re full.
Listen to your body
I know this sounds like an incredibly simple thing but so many of us, (me included!) sometimes don’t listen to our own bodies.
You should eat when you are hungry, stop when you are full and do not be afraid of giving yourself time between meals to build up your hunger if you are a serial snacker!
I know many of you will think this last point is a silly one but, trust me, it is so important to our health. It relates to my last point about listening to your body.
Food is not just our fuel, it is nourishment for our minds. We need food not only to survive but thrive and science has proved the strongly linked relationship between brain health and gut health.
In saying this, positive affirmations, like little mantras when mindfully eating can help psychologically help us to nourish our cells with goodness.
In conclusion, everyone has their vice when it comes to food. Food is to be enjoyed, in moderation and should give us all the nutrients we need to live energetic, fulfilled lifestyles.
Let me know how you get on, I want to hear your stories!