When you look at a picture of food, what is your perception? I find the perception of food fascinating as there are many factors that contribute to one’s observation including:
-How we were raised
-What you eat
-What you crave
-Connection/Belief to marketing products
Everyone’s perception and palate varies based upon the above influences. But, I find that what we read, hear and see mostly affects our modern day diet decisions. For years, the thought of eating fat was negative due to doctors and the American Heart Association stating that a low-fat diet is beneficial for heart health and weight maintenance. With this perception being beaten into the brains of society most feared the most nutritious fat-based foods such as olive oil, avocado, nuts, beans and coconut. Due to some re-education and up to date research, these products (and Mediterranean-based lifestyle) are now part of a healthy lifestyle showing that a higher fat diet is healthy and essential to well-being. Funny, somehow the Greeks figured this stuff out thousands of years ago.
Many Americans are beginning to change their perception and have concerns regarding ingredients, GMO's and what's in their food. But yet, there is still a long way to go.
Marketing is one of the biggest influences on how we perceive food. We watch commercials or read magazine ads while ogling with a watering mouth.
One of the best methods is to test your perception is by looking at two images and writing down the first initial thoughts that enter your mind.
Are you ready? Look at the two images below and write what you think.
I did this test twice. The first round I perceived my mind as myself at twenty years old. During this time, I was highly concerned about my weight, what I ate and how much I exercised. I was obsessed with exercise and caloric output. And I tortured myself in the gym.
When looking at the burgers and fries I thought, “fat, weight gain and gross calories.” When I looked at the multi-colored salad I thought, “healthy, thin and low calories.”
The second round I Googled similar images. I looked at these images of my current mental state, a 30-year old spiritual being having a human experience who moves everyday but doesn’t obsess over calories (intake and expenditure). I move and do what makes me happy.
I looked at the burger and fries and thought, “brainwash and poison.”
I looked at the vibrant salad and thought, “powerful, energetic, uplifting.”
The way I lived my life at twenty drastically varies at thirty. But I find it interesting at how I perceive food with a deeper meaning. I look at burger and fries (from a traditional fast food place) as a tincture of poison and brainwash chemicals. The more these companies can control your mind and body, the more you become addicted to feeling like shit and wanting their products. I see this food as a form of mind control.
On the other hand, I perceive the food from nature as limitless power. It is the source of fuel that uplifts and energizes the body and soul and inspires your most creative thoughts.
Compared to when I was twenty, I was so worried about how the food affects my physical appearance without connecting the soul to the food. I feel most are still in this mindset and not realizing that food is information. What you eat does more than affect the physical body. Food imprints the mind, body and soul with its (lack of) energy. How many of you want to go on a bike ride or jog after consuming a heavy eggs, bacon, potato and toast breakfast?
With long-term poor eating, the body becomes addicted to either the chemicals or “high” from the food as well as connecting the emotions to the food. The deeper we dig ourselves into finding happiness or security with food the more our eating habits spiral out of control.
How the mind perceives food is a powerful tool. So, how do you perceive food?
To sign off, I leave you with this -
"In our fast-forward culture, we have lost the art of eating well. Food is often little more than fuel to pour down the hatch while doing other stuff - surfing the Web, driving, walking along the street. Dining al desko is now the norm in many workplaces. All of this speed takes a toll. Obesity, eating disorders and poor nutrition are rife."
Elizabeth Rae Kovar M.A. is Author of her memoir, Finding Om and is a Fitness Trainer, Yogi, Reiki Master, Presenter and Lover of Life. To view her portfolio please visit www.elizabethkovar.com