What is Food?
By Dee Josey
In an effort to find the answer to this question, I simply did what anyone would do when searching for an answer in the 21st century; I googled it. Type in “food” to google search, and this is one of the first pictures you will find:
If this is what google is telling people, we are in bigger trouble than I thought.
What is food?
The Journal of Nutrition and Food Sciences defines food as “nothing but chemical organic entities.” That's very descriptive, inDEEd, but it's not quite what I am looking for. According to the very reliable source, Wikipedia, food is defined as “any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for an organism. It is usually of plant or animal origin, and contains essential nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, or minerals.” Urban dictionary states that food is “a substance you eat then poop out and is usually followed by a nap.” It became clear that this was not as easy of a task as I had originally thought. Eighteen (18) months of blood, sweat, and tears and a nutrition coaching certification later, I have come up with this answer:
“Food is complex.”--Coach Dee
Thank you. Thank you. Please hold all applause until the end.
Food Is Complex
During the 30 years of infinite wisdom and priceless experience that has been my life, I have concluded that food is so much more than the stuff we eat to fuel our body. It is also:
● Micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) to keep our body from breaking down
● Phytochemicals (from plants) and Zoochemicals (from animals)
● Information--chemical messages to our body to tell it exactly how to work
I could write an entire book on this topic alone, but we should face the truth together. The market is already oversaturated with confusing books on nutrition, and I would only add to that chaos.
All you need to understand is that food is complex.
Food Tells a Story
Answer this question: What is food for you?
Is it an emotional release? Is it a means of socializing? Are you one of those sophisticated foodies, or do you eat Ramen noodles every day for lunch? Are you a thoughtful consumer who visits the local health food store? Perhaps you are one of the adventurous ones who will eat anything once. Do your ethnicity, religion, or political stance define your food choices? Are you a caregiver who loves cooking for others? Do you eat out of convenience, or do you enjoy a long meal with your family? Do you eat out more than you cook? If you timed yourself, how fast does it take you to consume your meals?
Food is packed with information about who we are and how we operate our personal lives. It communicates a valuable story about each and every one of us.
WARNING--Too all the introverts in the world: I am a trained professional. I will learn much about your life just by looking at your food journal (or lack thereof).
Coach Dee’s Extensive Conclusion
The topic of food is complicated.
Every food choice we make is an opportunity to change our health, our performance, our body composition, and our well-being
Now you may applause.
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