Food Relationship Status: it’s complicated
I’ve finally put it out to the universe, ie. posted it on my IG, that I want to lose weight. What on earth do I do next?
Understanding my Relationship with Food
Me staring very fondly at food: “You complete me.”
I figured that my very first step should be to address my relationship with food. Let me start out by saying that I LOVE FOOD. I literally LIVE to EAT. I think about food quite a lot during the day. In fact, I plan out what I’ll have for breakfast as I go to sleep, wonder about lunch right after my morning caffeine fix, and dinner plans, of course, are made mid-bite during lunch. To say the least, I think about food so much that I’m already planning my next meal as I’m eating one. I’d like to think that I’m not alone in this (I hope…) and that many others out there know exactly what I’m talking about.
But real talk though, food is amazing! I love everything about it! I’ve seen practically every food show you can imagine, followed tons of food blogs, taken my own shots of food porn, cried over chef’s stories featured on Chef’s Table, taken cooking lessons, made my own cheese, tabled must-try restaurants before I die on my bucket list, been on wine and beer tours, set goals to try all of Buzzfeed’s Worth It recommendations, youtube’d all the videos of David Chang and Eddie Huang (my favorite culinary gangsters), and seen Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations and Parts Unknown over and over again wishing that perhaps I can live just one day of his fabulous life.
I think my love, passion, and curiosity for food are completely normal. I’m certain that my sentiments are shared by millions of others. I’ve realized that every person shares similar experiences and wonderful memories connected to that bite and plate of food.
Food is truly wonderful because it doesn’t simply exist to get rid of hunger or nourish our bodies, but rather it opens hearts, gives happiness, and brings people together.
So again I ask myself, what is the problem?
Recognizing the difference between Food-Appreciation vs. Food-Dependency
Food-appreciation is exactly what I described above. Recognizing food’s amazingness is bowing down to the food gods and masters who live and breathe their craft. It is the cognizance that food is not only informative but is also transformative. Food-appreciation is literally saying, “Food is the shit!” It is the feeling of content after a meal.
Food-dependency is the struggle we face when we become so reliant on food that we constantly chase that temporary food-high right after a meal. It is planning your next meal while currently eating one. It is when “emotional eating” doesn’t occur just once in a while but rather becomes a norm. As oppose to food-appreciation, it is the feeling of guilt after a meal.
I feel that at this point in my life, I have just as much if not more food-dependency than food-appreciation. My unhealthy food choices have impacted not only my health but also caused my negative relationship with food. I need to stop making excuses and make a conscious effort to make better choices. I have realized that just like with any relationship, you get exactly what you put in it. Thus I need to put in more effort when it comes to my relationship with food. It is not about being perfect and depriving oneself of certain things but rather finding a balance that will suit me, my lifestyle, my health and of course my love of food.