“Love is our deepest longing. Just as the body needs food the soul needs love – it is nourishment, spiritual nourishment. Without the food, air and water, the body will deteriorate; without love the soul starts shrinking.”
(Osho, Going All the Way)
Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and we are ready to celebrate with this heartfelt guest post from Stephanie Dunne. Her perspective on food is refreshing and encouraging… we hope you enjoy!
Stephanie is a Registered Dietitian (RD) with a private practice in New York City. After recognizing that her life’s dream is to help people improve their overall wellness through optimal nutrition, she left her job as a senior manager of strategic projects at a telecommunications company to pursue a career in nutrition. She has since received her Master’s degree in nutrition and is continuing her learning in the area of integrative and functional medicine.
Stephanie hopes to change the world by helping people connect with food in a healing, enriching, and satisfying way. Learn more by visiting her website, Nutrition QED.
Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day, a day to celebrate love. Perhaps you are one of those people who thinks the day is a big joke and prefer not to feed the consumerism of it. Or maybe you admire the spirit of the day and will take the opportunity to tell your loved ones that you do. Possibly you will have fond memories of loved ones who are far away or have passed into another realm. At a minimum, I hope you have the opportunity to spend some time with someone who loves you.
Whether or not you actively participate in the holiday festivities, I suspect that tomorrow you will eat… at least once, probably more. After all, eating is necessary for survival. So given that tomorrow is supposed to be about love and you need to eat anyway, indulge me for a minute as I tell you all the ways that I love you.
First, I want you to know that I exist solely for your sustenance. I contain all the things your body needs to exist, grow, and thrive. I supply your muscles with the protein they need to stay strong and keep your body in motion1. I give your brain the necessary nutrients to think and control the rest of you2. Not only do I give every one of your cells the precursors of energy, but I also give you the vitamins and minerals necessary to turn them into energy3. I provide a mechanism by which you can keep the microbiome in your gut flourishing4, and I provide the building blocks with which your body renews itself 5. In short, I am responsible for keeping your physical body functioning at its best.
Lest you start to feel that our relationship is purely physical, let me assure you that it is so much more than that! I enjoy being a medium through which you can express your love when you cook and serve me to yourself and the people that you care about. I get pleasure out of participating in so many of your social outings. And although I wish for you that these times are few and far between, I know I have a role in providing you comfort during times of sorrow, disappointment, or self-doubt6.
I also know that sometimes you eat less because of something you are experiencing or because you believe fasting is beneficial7. I want you to know that I don’t feel neglected in those times. I know you are doing what is best for you, and my goal is to benefit you and not to harm you.
I hope I have made clear my love for you, dearest one. In return, I request that you do your best to keep our relationship in balance such that I don’t inadvertently cause you pain and suffering. And, please, please, stick with the real version of me – the imposters who pretend to be me are no good for you.
I am excited about my continuing role in your journey to be the best version of yourself. See you soon!
Image via Death to the Stock Photo
- R. Thomas Jagoe, Stewart H. Lecker, Marcelo Gomes, and Alfred L. Goldberg: Patterns of gene expression in atrophying skeletal muscles: response to food deprivation ↩
- John E. Morley: Nutrition and the Brain ↩
- E Huskisson, S Maggini and M Ruf: The role of Vitamins and Minerals in Energy Metabolism and Well-Being ↩
- James Maskell: Top 10 Probiotic Foods to Add to Your Diet ↩
- Thomas R. Ziegler, Mary E. Evans, Concepción Fernández-Estívariz, and Dean P. Jones: Trophic and Cytoprotective Nutrition for Intestinal Adaptation, Mucosal Repair, and Barrier Function ↩
- Michael Macht: How emotions affect eating: A five-way model ↩
- Allison Aubrey, Eliza Barclay: Minifasting: How Occasionally Skipping Meals May Boost Health ↩