What is food and why do we eat?

August 14th 2017  |   in Food and cooking   |   9 min. read

Photo by Leonie Wise

Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.

Hippocrates

We are all aware of the importance of nutrition in our life in order to maintain health. Actually, nutrition is one of the most important, more important than exercise, and nutrition is accomplished most of all through eating food. Thus, food should, by definition, provide nutrition to our body and eating should be the process of offering food to our body. But do these definitions apply to the so called “food” that we so called “eat” today?

When I was a little child my parents did not cook too much so I ate mostly packaged and ordered food, mostly snacks, chips, sweets, candy, and processed foods. Whenever I went to my grandparents, however, I ate only home cooked food, but it tastes so good that I could not stop from literally stuffing myself. I could not wait for the next bite and ate very fast without properly chewing. These war the reasons I became overweight at age of 10 and had heart problems occasionally.

Food is the organic material containing all the essential nutrients for the development and regeneration of each cell of our body and holding the required information to be digested and absorbed by each cell. Eating is the process of supplying and transforming - digesting - food into usable products by our cells.

According to these definitions, I may say that when I lived with my parents I wasn’t eating food, whereas when I lived with my grandparents I wasn’t eating. In either case, I suffered from malnutrition, because my body was deprived from the essential nutrients. This definitions are actually opposed to most food from our supermarkets and to most of our eating habits today. This is beacuase most food from supermarkets are nutrient deficient, not to mention the processed and packaged food which is just empty calories, containing nothing more than refined sugars, hydrogenated (trans) fat, salt, and an abundance of synthetic preservatives to lenghten the shelf life. Even the raw fruits and vegetables have been geneteically modifed and grown unnaturally in order to become bigger and more “beautiful” like. Its the total opposite to the food we as human species have evolved.

If we look at tribes and at our ancestors that lived in harmony with nature, they were all healthy and had proportional - perfect - features. This is beacuase they embraced the offered their environment offered them. Not only this, but when they ate, they ate. They did not watch television, they did not talk on the phone, they did not play video games, they did not drive or walk around while eating; they just stood, soundly and appreciated their food. They showed respect to their food, because food is life, isn’t it? Food holds, or should hold, the energy of life from plants and animals. Food holds the entire information recored by the plant or animal throughout its life. When we it, we retain all that information. We inherit everything. Imagine now what happens when we eat a sick animal or plant. We absorb all the antibiotics, stress hormones, chemical substances, and who knows what else.

Who shows respect to food today? I know that I am not appreciating my food as I should. I am one of the many who has thrown away a lot of food. That food could had fed a starving person. The worst part is that I disrespected myself, because the food I thrown away was my and other peaople’s work. I invested my time and energy for that food. It’s a pitty….

The more respect we show to food, the more it retains its primal information and the more it nourishes us. Since the day it is raised or planted, until it is cooked and server, food should be appreciated and respected. Our ancestors did this and that is why they lived a wealthy life. Because they respected everything around, especially nature and the food that came from it. We resonated with ourselves and natured, but we no longer do. As a result, we are all fat, sick, and dissapointed. But I still have hpoe and believe in us. We are destined to be healthy and happy, not sick and unhappy. There was a period of darkness in which we were asleep, blinded, fooled, but now, slowly, we are awakening again, and it all begins with our eating habits.

Right now I am trying to disconnect from my old fat and sick self and restore the primal lost harmony and I invited you to to the same. The only ones we need to change is ourselves and the the others around us will change by our example - through inspiration. I have started to buy local food from trusted farmers and fruits and vegetables that are in season. All my meals are prepared by me and I never eat out. I love to play in the kitchen. It’s fun, relaxing, and delightful. All I needed was a “taste” of it. I never say I don’t have time to cook, because it would be like saying I don’t have time to breathe. The same way I have time to go to the bathroom, to read a book, to go outside, to watch a movie, or do anything else, I also have time to cook. Of course, I needed to through away the time wasting activities, but it was warth it. Health is worth it and we realize it only when we loose it. Let’s just hope it’s not too late then. Why risk?

Change happens in a moment. It’s the courage to make the decision to make the change that takes a lot of time.

Tony Robbins

The hardest thing for me to do, which still is, was to eat correctly, and that is to eat slowly, no distractions, chew properly, ensalivate the food properly, and savor each bite. Just me and the food, nothing else! I also had a problem with emotional eating, which is actually a big problem nowadays. Most of us don’t eat food, because we are hungry and to feed the body; we eat because we are sad, stressed, excited, bored, etc. In other words, we eat to delight our taste buds and produce endorphins. That is why most of us crave sugar, fat, and salty and we are addicted to junk food.

Junk food is high in refined sugars, hydrogenated fat, refined table salt, and monosodium glutamate (MSG) which makes junk food so “delicious” and addictive. Processed food has messed up our genes, our nervous system, our endocrine system, and now we are fat, sick, addicted, and sad. Processed food is like a drug for sure and it’s mostly synthetic. Our body - DNA - doesn’t know how to deal with it. Our ancestors did not find potato chips, beggels, doughnuts, chocolate bars, french fries, pizza, burgers, and other processed food growing in trees you know?. Stick to the real food your body was designed to receive - from nature - and eat when hungry not when stressed or excited. Now, before I eat I try to talk to myself and be aware of my feelings. Am I hungry or thirsty? Am I hungry or just bored?

It takes time, but through exercises and persistence anything can be mastered.

Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not: the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.

Calvin Coolidge

Eat food, don’t swallow junk

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