03 August 2008

"All I Need Is..." When It Comes To Food Quality Are You Settling for Less Than You Deserve?

Remember the “All I Need Is’ scene in the movie “The Jerk” where Steve Martin’s character rummages a few measly items from his million dollar mansion after losing everything after an invention turns soar? In the comic scene of all comic scenes, he trots pathetically around the house picking up whatever his hands can carry, chanting “All I Need Is…. “

I know you must be saying “What the heck does this scene have to do with food or eating for that matter?". If I were not compelled to relay everything on this blog back to food in some way, I could easily be tempted to devote the better three quarters of this webpage to ranting and raving about this movie being one of the best comic masterpieces to grace the big screen.

But we are talking about food after all, so let’s get back to that topic.
So how really does this insanely funny scene connect here? It certainly isn't in the pitiful scene or the character itself, despite their humor. The real connection for me is the misleading phrase “All I Need Is…” I’ve hardly ever heard that phrase said in a way that is convincing or sincere. It screams forced modesty and claiming only what we think we can have at one moment in time. It happens all the time in love, in work, in friendships, and certainly with food. Even in the scene with Steve Martin, the façade shines through. Who in there right minds would be happy with basically ‘the clothes on their backs’ when they know they can have the best, especially when they actually had it all and lost it all?

To me that’s where we’ve come with food. So many of us are convincing ourselves that “All We Need Is…Food which doesn’t satisfy us, food "impersonators", food striped of its original form or makeup, over processed food, and whole meals overtaken by our crazy schedules and empty calories. Do you see yourself somewhere in the maze?

If so, in order to steer yourself back on track, it is important I think to
• Enjoy food “for real” and eat with attention (mindful eating) which can help make you more intuned to your hunger signals, and decrease guilt and shame associated with eating.

• Embrace truly balanced and varied eating which incorporates all kinds of cuisines and natural ingredients.

• Recognize that it’s all about quality, not quantity. Overindulgence is just as destructive as deprivation.

It’s overwhelming, I know. You have all the food under the sun available to you, and everyday you hear of yet more food to be afraid of. Last year’s friend, this year’s foe. Suddenly the food supply seems like a minefield. The impulse is to never go out there and explore. But food is all about exploration, and if you’re not exploring, then be aware that you are settling for less than you deserve. The best self-help experts say that awareness is one of the first steps to freedom, in this case freedom to enjoy better food.



Welcome to the Foodie Blog Roll! I couldn't agree more that quality is much more important than quantity. I'm much more satisfied with a small amount of good food rather than a large quantity of junk.

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