Somewhere in the way we live today, we’ve got the idea that life MUST be Happy all the time. Pain, discomfort, difficult phases, dark emotions, negative thoughts are all – always – dysfunctional and thus need to be fixed at all costs. (Where did this programming come from? Movies, books, music, advertisements…) Because we believe emotional discomfort must be fixed we turn to FOOD as the way to make us feel better!
Food becomes a substitute for living – we forget the fundamental purpose of food: NOURISHMENT!
Very few of the commonly available food, beverage and snack options are high on nourishment. Because I’m not feeling good right now (and I’m not willing to accept being comfortable with this feeling) I turn to food to make me feel better; food that is sweet, fatty, salty, and full of artificial chemicals and preservatives. Getting the picture of how the calories build up – and how we put on weight?
It’s not the food’s fault. If we don’t like what’s going on inside us – thoughts or feelings – we turn to eating to provide comfort and relief. Physiologically sugary, salty and fatty foods activate the pleasure center of the brain; this not only helps relive stress but also anxiety, sadness, boredom, shame, frustration and even anger. That’s why DIETS don’t last! Moving towards wellness means learning to understand, accept, and work with these emotions and their triggers. Food must NOT become the primary coping mechanism of life. Recognize and accept these dark emotions as part of who we are! Food provides nourishment – it’s not a substitute for living!
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Reference: The Diet Trap by Jason Lillis, Joanne Dahl, Sandra M. Weineland