Alex Chan
5 min read

Our attachments to food

Written by
Dr. Alex Chan
Published on
May 18, 2022

So much of life is about moderation-what’s good in one quantity can be insignificant or deadly in a different amount. Even water an essential part of our cells and something we need to drink daily can be dangerous if consumed in excess. This idea of moderation is especially important when it comes to what we eat. Food is interesting as for most people it means more than just sustenance. We are emotionally attached to food and use it for comfort and as a centerpiece for social interactions with family and friends. It’s easy to pick out food choices that may be less than ideal in someone else’s life but successfully changing our own habits needs to come from an internal motivation to change. Until we closely examine our own relationship with food making lasting change is very difficult.

For myself I have an expectation of what I should eat in order to stay healthy and satisfied. I’ll be the first to say that I’m not perfect. Sometimes I eat junk. For me given my current health I find I feel nourished and vibrant if I maintain at least an 80:20 rule. 80% of my food homemade, processed sugar, dairy and gluten free and 20% of freedom or “cheats” where I eat out or buy food and don’t worry about my usual guidelines. Obviously for some people with certain health conditions and food allergies certain foods are going to be non-negotiable. In these circumstances certain food avoidances should always apply. If you find yourself unhappy with your current relationship to food I recommend you try the following:

  • Think about food-what does it mean to you? What feelings do you associate with eating and are there any attachments to specific foods?
  • How do you feel after you eat these trigger foods?
  • Is there anything you could do differently that would make you feel better?

Understanding the relationship whether its positive or negative is a step in the right direction. Remember that if you are unhappy with your food attachments you can change them! It’s also important to keep in mind that food choices can be made with moderation. What seems feasible for you? Maybe my 80:20 rule seems absolutely insane. No problem start by moving in the right direction-whatever you can commit to and be successful at will place you in good stead for future changes. Ultimately you have control!




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