Aside from the nutritional value we need from our meals, food also plays an essential part in celebrations, culture, making memories, and spending time with loved ones. Here are some ways to add meaning and connection to your eating habits and genuinely enjoy the experience of nourishing yourself through food.
Make Family Recipes
While the internet is full of recipes for whatever cuisine you desire, nothing beats going through a family cookbook. It can also help you feel more connected to your family, bring up nostalgic memories, and even ignite conversations of family stories of the past.
Put In the Extra Effort for Yourself
When your friends and family come over for dinner, they get the full treatment. From putting out matching cutlery sets to fancy coffee cups and napkins, you put in the extra effort to make an enjoyable experience for them. Why not do the same for you? Light a candle, set yourself up a spot at the table, and eat mindfully. Put away your phone and laptops and focus on enjoying your food. This mindful eating helps build a positive relationship towards food. You don’t need to stress about the presentation— the point is to create an environment that makes you happy. You might enjoy eating on the couch with a good movie, and this is unique to you and even interchangeable day by day according to your moods.
Include Your Friends & Family
Having company is always wonderful, but it’s extra special when you’re cooking and eating together. Share the experience by inviting over loved ones to cook a meal with you. You can also video-call if it’s more convenient and your loved ones live far away. Take turns picking recipes each week, then make them together and share your thoughts. You can have cuisine-themed nights or even meal prep together. If you have kids, this is a great way to spend time with them while teaching them some fun and easy cooking skills.
Celebrate with Meals
Food is a fantastic way to celebrate, no matter how big or small the event is. Try to build that connection between food and celebration by making yourself a nice meal when you accomplish something, reach a milestone, or on any other special day. It doesn’t have to be something big— you can celebrate finishing your work, cleaning the house, or checking off that item on your to-do list that’s been lingering forever. Of course, everything is in moderation, but associating food with a celebration is an easy way to make that joyful connection with food.
Buy Food You Share Values With
Whether you enjoy eating certain foods for ethical reasons or want to support a local restaurant in your community, buying food that aligns with your values helps build a connection to your food beyond enjoyment or taste. By supporting a small business, you can build a connection with your community, especially during these difficult times. If you choose to cook a particular cuisine, try to buy from an authentic shop that sells any spices or ingredients you may need. Cooking a meal from your cultural background helps you connect to your roots and family.
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