By Jeff Sheppard 16 Dec 2020 no comment 763 Views

Food is our body’s main source of nutrients.  Food is a common cornerstone of human cultures thoughout history.  Yet today we market foods as products.  Unhealthy food is more convenient, heavily advertised, and perceived as cheaper.

Many people in the modern age have a troubled relationship with food.  But food is a necessity of life.

How can we have a more positive relationship with food?

Firstly, healthy bodies need healthy food.  This is the cornerstone of a good relationship with food.

Avoid looking at food as a reward

It’s easy to fall into this habit:  finish off that jog with a candy bar at the convenience store, or tell yourself that if you make it through a rough work week, you’ll treat yourself to an oversized fast-food meal, a favourite dessert, or a round of alcohol.  The problem with making food a reward is that you associate unhealthy food with feeling happy.

If you feel bad in the middle of the week…you feel an urge to “pick yourself up” with food.

This often leads to choosing unhealthy food, or eating far more than your body needs.  It’s especially troublesome when your reward for making a healthy change—like exercising regularly, cooking nutritious meals or practicing mental self-care—is a binge of excessive and/or unhealthy food.

Instead, think of rewards that don’t involve food.  They don’t have to cost money.  If you make it through a rough work week, you’ll block off a Saturday for uninterrupted hobby time.  When you finish that jog, you’ll relax with a cool shower or a warm bath.

Similarly, food is not a punishment

Punishment is the flip side of reward.  Food is a necessity of life, not a disciplinary tool.

If you regret eating that entire pizza on Friday night, you should not “punish” yourself by skipping meals on Saturday, or making yourself eat nothing but lettuce for the next week.

Nobody should be denied food as a disciplinary measure—and that includes yourself!

So what do you do if you know you’ve overeaten junk food?  Resolve to focus today on eating healthy food in fair proportions to meet your nutritional needs, one meal at a time.

The “fix” for an action you regret isn’t going too far the other way.  It’s resuming a sustainable healthy lifestyle as soon as possible.

Eating healthy food should not feel “disappointing” or like a “chore” you have to do in order to “earn” something you’d enjoy eating.  Healthy food is allowed to taste good!  You are encouraged to find healthy meals that you enjoy, and relish them thoroughly.

Celebrate nutritious food

Vegetables don’t have to be “tasteless” or “gross.”  Salads don’t have to be “unsatisfying.”  Soups can be “hearty.”  Healthy meals can be delicious!

Experiment with recipes to find healthy meals that you love to eat.

Take your time to savour your food and enjoy every bite.

In conclusion, you deserve nutritious, healthy, tasty, and satisfying meals.  Your body will thank you!

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