Is it Possible to Have a Healthy Relationship with Food?
Food has different meanings for different people - one might formulate schedules around food while others may not even notice missing a meal. Either way, developing a healthy relationship with food is immensely esteemed for best nourishing the body.
Food has different meanings for different people - one might formulate schedules around food while others may not even notice missing a meal. But whether it be an extreme fixation or avoidance of mealtimes or snacks, developing a healthy relationship with food is immensely esteemed for best nourishing the body.
How to Change Your Relationship with Food
Practice Mindful Eating
Mindful eating is a rising approach to strengthen food relationships, even showing significance in the treatment of eating disorders, obesity, and diabetes. Practicing mindful eating is simply learning to pay attention to thoughts, feelings, and sensations during meal and snack times. Eating intuitively urges the recognition of smells, flavors, and emotions tied to foods, ultimately aimed to connect us on a deeper level regarding food experiences. Find more information on mindful eating at The Center for Mindful Eating website.
Listen to Hunger and Satiety Cues
While food certainly can be relished and enjoyed, it is important to differentiate between hunger and temptation. Further tagging on the concept of eating intuitively, listening to your body's hunger and satiety cues can build a healthy relationship with food. Consuming foods strictly based on hunger strikes food appreciation, as it helps its recognition on how it nourishes the body. Slowing down mealtimes also allows satiety cues to surface, as it takes approximately 20 minutes for the brain and stomach to connect the "I'm full" feeling.
Eat for Health
Supplementing the recognition of hunger and satiety cues, start to eat for health. Instead of reaching for a convenient bag of chips during bouts of hunger, seek out nutrient-rich foods in its place. Begin to identify how colorful foods offer vitamins and minerals and how each benefits the body - vitamin A (carrots) for eye health, vitamin C (citrus fruits) for immune health, and calcium (milk) for bone health, just to name a few. When you start to better understand the nutritional ties to food, you may be more apt to include them within your diet. Additionally, it is important to not award yourself with food. Rather than validating a large brownie following an intense workout, nourish the body with healthful foods required for optimal recovery.
Focus On Ingredients
In addition to centering on the senses involved while eating foods, start to focus on the ingredients used to create them. Preparing meals from scratch allows you to better understand their intricate assembly, further raising the appreciation on how simple components can transform into flavorful dishes. Continuously preparing your own meals will naturally drive you away from those convenience foods commonly known to be loaded with unnecessary, less healthful ingredients.
Avoid Large Packages and Bags of Foods
Individuals with a healthy relationship with food tend to stray away from sitting down with a large bag of chips or a carton of ice cream. Though such foods can fit into a balanced diet, the key word is balance. After identifying the desire or need for food products, stick to recommended serving sizes. To further keep snack intake in check, purchase single-serve products and scoop or count out the identified serving size in the kitchen rather than bingeing on the whole package in front of the television.
Eliminate Trigger Foods
Though value holds to embrace various foods, it may be worthy to eliminate those so-called "trigger" foods that tend to be sought out following a long day and subsequently over consumed. Ultimately, seeking out foods solely based on emotion is highly discouraged, as it can foster an unhealthy relationship towards it. The bottom line: if consuming the entire package of chocolate chip cookies is inevitable following a stressful day at the offer, simply halt their entry from your kitchen pantry.