Unplug And Recharge With One Meal A Day

by | May 26, 2010
Green Apple, Yellow Teapot

Photo by Chris Isherwood back soon

Few things are as irrevocably tied to our health and well being as food. But while much attention is given to the kind of foods we eat, the way we eat and our relationship with food can be just as important.

Eating traditions and food culture have been all but abandoned in the US. Thanks to busy schedules, technological advances, and the aggressive marketing of convenience foods by the food industry it is now both possible and acceptable to eat anytime and anywhere.

But what price do we pay for this new found convenience?

Efficiency and multitasking are appealing in a society where time is arguably our most precious commodity, but we must remember that in the food world what we gain in expediency we sacrifice in quality of life.

When our goals are to cook as little as possible, eat whenever convenient, and not worry about the origins of our food, we lose both the joy and good health food should bring to our lives.

Meal time is an opportunity to unplug from the daily grind and recharge both physically and mentally. Rather than viewing eating as a regular chore that needs to be accomplished as efficiently as possible, we should approach food as a source of health and pleasure to be nurtured and enjoyed.

The most basic satisfaction we take from food is the sensual pleasure of eating itself. Good food is delicious, and appreciating this gift of nature can bring tremendous joy to you and those you care about. A good meal deserves your full attention and requires little more than stepping away from the screen and sitting at a table.

Food also has the power to bring people together and strengthen relationships. A strong social network can have a tremendous impact on your quality of life, and meal time is one of the easiest ways to nurture this basic human need. Instead of gathering around the TV at dinner, try using this opportunity to share quality food and conversation with people you care about.

But the joys of food are not limited to highbrow meals with other people. Both cooking and sitting down to eat by yourself without disruptions from multimedia can create rare moments of peace and thoughtfulness, a chance to break away from the constant demands on your attention. Taking time to reflect each day can do more to reduce your stress levels than banging out just a few more emails while inhaling a sandwich.

Food also has the power to deepen your appreciation of nature and your community. When food is important to you, ingredients (and where they come from) quickly take center stage. Great ingredients are a product of both nature and the skill of the grower. Understanding all that goes into making a wonderful meal helps you appreciate the seasons, the soil and the agricultural community that are responsible for growing your food. Understanding and respecting the origins of what you eat helps connect you to our planet and your local community.

Since we eat three times a day, the various joys we get from food can contribute immensely to our quality of life. Though it might not be possible to slow down and unplug every time you eat, striving to step away from multimedia at least one meal a day can help you work more efficiently the rest of the time.

When we pay it our full attention, food simultaneously recharges us in both body and spirit. In this way, unplugging and enjoying a meal is its own form of multitasking.

How does cooking and eating improve your quality of life?

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8 Responses to “Unplug And Recharge With One Meal A Day”

  1. Mike says:

    Good idea, especially for us I.T. folk. We have a habit of eating in front of our keyboards.

    You know, at first I read the title and thought it was going to be another fasting article. That topic seems to be trending these days. I’m not against, but haven’t tried it, either.

  2. Linda says:

    Really enjoyed this article, and agree wholeheartedly. I have recently started a ‘camping/cooking-on-the-fire in South Africa’ blog, and this sums our attitude to food.

    I’ve subscribed to your blog, thanks!

  3. Natalie says:

    Great post! I am SO GUILTY of eating in front of my screen during lunchtime. I’m definitely going to incorporate this in my lunch routine. For dinner, I cook for myself probably about 80% of the time, and while sometimes it does feel like a chore, most of the time I liken it to meditating. I love it!

    • Darya Pino says:

      I’m the first to admit I’m horrible at this. But I am trying, and it does help for sure.

      • Natalie says:

        Alright, so I tried this out today.. Not only did I eat less, but I also had a great convo with the boss! (..and learned how to make pierogies via Martha Stewart mag) This method is a winner! I’m an unplugger/recharger from now on. ;-)

  4. Brenna Waack says:

    Excellent post, I really took it to heart. This AM instead of watching the news I watched the sunrise and for lunch I listened to music on pandora.com. It was nice to have time away from the TV and keyboard. Plus I think my cereal tasted crunchier.

  5. Rita says:

    I love to cook but hate to clean up but more importantly my husband and sons are so unwilling to even try new foods and recipes
    Even more challenging is that they only have a repertoire of about 4 vegetables that they’ll eat
    Any suggestions would be welcome!

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