For a blog about nutrition this title sounds, to say the least a little weird, although it may sound very appropriate, if we think about all the things that have been happening in the world. Let us put the problems of the world just for a moment aside and talk about a relationship. Not any relationship, but the one between you and what you eat, you and your nutrition. It may not seem like a relationship, but it really is, if you think about it. We chose what we eat (at least that’s how it should be), and what we eat can release all kinds of feelings and emotions. Happiness, sadness, comfort, discomfort, joy, boredom, pleasure, guilt, satisfaction, anxiety, remind you of people, places, times, the list goes on and on. Food is with you in good times and in bad times, in sickness and in health. But why do some people have more successful relationships with their food and eating than others? The answer to this question is very complex, is above all individual and it dependes on many things. This post doesn't have the pretension to answer this, but only to make an analogy that may help you see your relationship to food differently and, maybe, who knows, help things between you two.
Remember when your friends told you to end things with that guy that didn’t give a damn about you? Or remember the dead silence from your friends over your big hopes and dreams with someone you had nothing in common with? Your friends wanted only what’s best for you, but you were blind and “in love”, ignored their advice and got screwed over. Probably many times. Somewhere down the road we learn that a good relationship, a relationship where there’s love, makes you feel good, it has it’s ups and downs for sure, but it also has a lot of “middles”, because it’s balanced, because it brings you peace, because it’s not supposed to last only a couple weeks, it’s supposed to last ideally forever, isn’t it? With food and eating is not different. To have a hot affair with your food is just not sustainable, at least not for your health, because it’s not love, it is obsession. I find it very interesting to think of your relationship to food and eating as if it was a marriage. There are the moments to do laundry and talk about the bills to pay, the moments to celebrate your anniversary at your favourite restaurant, moments to fall asleep together in front of the TV, to go to the concert of that band that plays your song. And yes, it’s work. But it’ love. And love is good for you. It can be the same way with food and eating. There are the days to go crazy on junk food & co, but most days should be normal and most of what you eat should be food that does you good. Please, don’t mistake what I’m saying for “marriage and eating have to be boring”, on the contrary. But where there is love, there is balance.
Our hunger and eating habits are not controlled through our stomach, but through our brain. That’s why love in terms of eating means to find balance and peace, eat with awareness of what you are eating, feeling pleasure and with no distractions, it means to listen to your body, listen to your hunger as well as your satisfaction sensations, it’s also to sleep well and enough and to chew your food properly. It’s eating fruits and vegetables, sources of protein, energy and fat, it’s eating on celebrations with friends, family and colleagues, it’s to try and cook your own meals whenever possible, it's trying to eat food as little processed as possible. For those who haven’t found that love and balance with food and eating yet, pregnancy is a great time to try. A lot of moms end up doing it for theirs babies, which is great, but it’s even better if you also do it for yourself.
Mamachouchou wish you all a Merry Christmas and a New Year with much more love, please.
P.s.: if you are interested in the subject of how our brain controls our hunger, I have a great book for you, but available only in Portuguese I’m afraid: O peso das dietas, Autora Sophie Deram.