Want to Have a Healthy Relationship with Food?
Wherever I am, when I look around me, I feel unsurprised at the problem many of us have with food. It makes perfect sense why so many of us do not have a healthy relationship with food.
- It is difficult to slow down and not rush from place to place, or fire off email after email. There is not time for creating a healthy meal or snack.
- There is super tasty food everywhere you look. This food is hard to reject.
- The super tasty food that you see everywhere is financially accessible.
- The healthy options hide in layers of unhealthy.
- You need to seek out good nutrition education, it is not common knowledge or easily accessible.
I watch my children as they go from place to place, continually plied with unhealthy foods. Each person probably thinking they are the only one “treating” them. No appreciation that every person before them offered something that tastes good but brings no benefit to their body – some things damaging. We are born with an instinct to seek food when we need it and to stop when we have enough. Babies’ food is sometimes restricted through outdated advice. The rewiring of the brain starts at birth. From then on, the brain adapts and changes in unnatural ways resulting in an adult that does not know when they feel hungry, does not know what foods their body needs and chases unnatural taste above natural. All before we consider the relationship between food and trauma.
A healthy relationship with food is important for your mental health and physical health. When your body does not get the nutrition it needs, you put yourself at risk of depression, anger, sleep disruption and anxiety. You are also more likely to suffer physically through a less efficient immune system and therefore higher chance of getting sick as well as increased aches, pains, and exhaustion.
How to have a Healthy Relationship with Food
The big question is, what is a healthy relationship with food? I think the answer is different for everyone. Some people want to eat what they want but stop when they feel full, whether that is the biscuit or the kale! Others want to eat only the foods their body needs. Others no longer want to enjoy the unnatural, unhealthy foods.
For me, a healthy relationship with food will receive a great big nudge when you start living mindfully. I use hypnosis to help people feel repulsed by certain foods. Whatever your weakness may be, within a hypnotherapy session I can help you want to run from that food rather than lap it up. It works and it gives you a head start, however it is not the full answer to a healthy relationship with food.
The first step is to seek a good education. A few sessions with a nutritional therapist will start you on the right track. In Dr. Rangan Chatterjee’s book The 4 Pillar Plan he recommends completely removing all sugars and only eating foods that contain less than five ingredients. This is a great way to retrain your taste buds. Many people come to me for hypnotherapy, asking how to change relationship with food. They report that they know what to do they just can’t do it. So, the simple suggestion of stop eating sugar and eat only whole foods does not really help! However, sometimes the simple knowledge is not quite enough to make the desire to change strong enough.
How to Change your Relationship with Food
Once you have a good enough education on nutrition you can seek out the part of you that really does not want to sabotage yourself any longer. Within hypnotherapy sessions, or mindfulness at home you can strengthen that part of you. Mindful living means living in the moment, fully aware of your feelings without any judgement. Rather than acting mindlessly and reaching for whatever food is in front of you regardless of your hunger levels or what your body needs nutritionally. You will give yourself time to feel and think. You will eat if your body needs food, and you will desire and take in the foods that bring your body benefits. My blog post Three Mindfulness Exercises- to reduce stress and raise awareness will help you learn how to live mindfully so you can begin this way of living today.
NB: Food and Trauma
In this article I have not mentioned the link between food and trauma. Trauma often results in an unhealthy relationship with food. When you come for one-to-one hypnotherapy sessions with me my free initial consultation will help to uncover any previous trauma, I commit to working in a trauma informed way always.