MOST people dream of a healthy food relationship. So here’s something that will stop and make you think. I want you imagine yourself as a baby that needs nourishing and love. Would you feed that baby the same way you feed yourself as an adult – sweets, sugary snacks, fizzy drinks, massive meals? I don’t think so.
The key thing if you want to develop a healthy food relationship is to love and care about your body and your health as if you’re feeding a new born baby.
So you must ask yourself: what exactly does food mean to me? Do I see it as nourishment and fuel because I care about your body and health? Or do I use food to make myself feel better or as a form of reward? Just reflect on your answer for a moment and ask yourself if you really have a healthy food relationship.
After 10 years of working with overweight people it’s become clear to me they have a different relationship with food compared to those who are slim.
Most slim people regard food as a source of nutrients to fuel and nourish their bodies. Their pleasure comes from the feeling that they’re caring for their bodies by doing healthy things. Of course, slim people have times when they enjoy food and drink as a reward, but it’s not a constant emotional thing. They’re in control of their food choices.
Sadly, so many of overweight people I have a relationship with food which is far more emotionally driven by pleasure, reward, stress, comfort or boredom. Occasionally, something that happened as far back as childhood has altered the meaning of food.
Healthy food relationship – how to achieve it
Many of us associate food with love and warmth because it reminds us of family dinners with everyone around the table. I was rewarded with chocolate and sweets if I was a good girl and did my homework.
When you’re used to having a food reward as a child, in adulthood it then becomes the thing that makes you feel better about yourself. This can often get out of control because you’ve triggered dopamine, the pleasure hormone, and the more you get the more you want.
The great thing is that you can change and influence this. If you make poor food choices based on immediate gratification and immediate reward, you can do something about it.
One of the ladies on my Slimpod Gold programme recently told me it has really helped her to change her focus so she now looks at food only as nourishment and fuel. She says she’s no longer “mindlessly eating for Britain!” I’m so excited for her!
It’s life and bad habits that have changed things for YOU. Your brain has taken you down the road to being overweight and your brain can just as easily do a U-turn and take you down the road to being slim and a healthy food relationship.
It’s the same brain after all. To make this change of direction you only need to be in tune with your body and be able to eat in a way that gives it the nourishment it needs.
Do let me know by leaving a comment below if you identify with any of the food reward stuff or if you want a healthy food relationship.