Eating as simply and as close as possible to a food’s natural state is the best medicine. Yet the incredible focus on preparing and eating food in this culture–even good food–seems excessive. Yes, be educated about food and nutrition, but then let it go! Preparation and presentation has such primacy, when in reality, we rarely slow down to see, taste, touch or smell what we eat, and know very little about what’s good for us. Not to mention that there is so much suffering and disaster behind the scenes that we choose to ignore- from the oppression of immigrant labor and factory farming practices that deplete the land to animal abuse.
Food is an essential part of our life, but how much effort and energy should revolve around food preparation and everything that leads up to it? Of course we need to cook and prepare food but do we need to think about it 24/7? I continue to learn and refine what I know about food and nutrition, and once I know, I try to let it go. I try to remember that food is about more than eating, and eating nourishes more than the physical body. Food creates a communion with ourselves and others. Our relationship to food can change the world.
A preoccupation with food masks many issues–even if you are not in the throes of an eating disorder. Examine what might lie behind all that preparation and preoccupation with eating.
- Get a timer, pencil, paper and a piece of your favorite food. Set the table with a placemat and place the food on a nice plate. Sit at the table, feet on the floor; set the timer for 10 minutes and take 3 deep breaths; look at what’s in front of you.
- Slowly draw the food for 10 minutes. Don’t judge what you’re drawing. Draw the food, the plate and just use line. It isn’t about drawing the perfect picture, it’s about relating to this food with another sense, the sense of sight. At the end of 10 minutes, look at your drawing. Notice the feelings that come up and write them down.