Think for a moment of a food from your past, one that makes you feel great after you eat it for no specific reason. Maybe it is macaroni pie, curry chicken, ice cream or pancakes. Eating comfort foods ( every now and then) can be incredibly healing, even though your rational brain might not consider it highly nutritious.
Food has the power to impact us on a level deeper than just our physical well-being. What we eat can reconnect us to precious memories of the past. Our bodies remember foods from the past on an emotional and cellular level. Eating food connects us to our roots and has regenerating and nurturing effects that go far beyond the food’s biochemical make up.
Acknowledging what different foods mean to us is an important part of cultivating a good relationship with food. This month when we celebrate lovers and relationships, its important to notice that we each have a relationship with food – and that this relationship is often far from loving. Many of us restrict food, attempting to control our weight. We often abuse food, substituting it for emotional well-being. Others ignore food, swallowing it whole before we’ve even tasted it.
Feeling guilty after you eat your ‘comfort foods’ only releases cortisol which triggers the fat storage mechanism and you can only imagine what happens when that get’s activated. Go back in time, be comforted by the “comfort food” and then come back to the present day and move on.
What would your life be like if you treated food and your body as you would treat your beloved – with gentleness, playfulness, communication, honesty, respect and love? The next time you eat your soul food, do so with awareness and without guilt, and enjoy all the healing and nourishment it brings you.