Alisha Ullal 

How’s your relationship with food?

Food and nutrition overlaps many areas of our lives; socialising, comfort and sustenance to name a few. Food behaviour can also help us identify our feelings or underlying issues.

Can we have a "relationship" with food, and if so, what does it actually mean? The answer for some is yes. We’re aware that we eat to fuel our bodies with energy to carry out our daily activities but are we aware if we’re avoiding certain foods due to our perception, maybe because they’re considered too fattening? Or maybe too unhealthy?

Do we feel anxious before eating or worried that we’re going to put on weight each time we eat some bread? Our relationship with food envelops the feelings we attach around eating and our choices of whether to eat, or not to eat, certain food groups.

Each of us has our own idea of what is considered to be "good" and "bad" food. Documentaries, supposed nutrition/fitness experts, marketing and our culture can help us to form these impressions too.

An important question to ask is "what do I think a good food is and what does it give me?" The same thing goes with what we consider "bad" foods – "what do I think a bad food is and why should I eat or avoid this?"

Starting to explore the feelings that we’ve attached to foods can help change our perception of them and our perception can have huge ramifications on the physiological outcome from those foods.

The body requires nourishment through nutrients such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Under these categories are the food types which we know – fruit, vegetables, cakes, meat, pulses – you name it! Remember any type of food can cause weight gain or weight loss depending on how much of it we eat! Some foods have more nutritional value than others and some foods have very little nutritional value and a lot of calories. "Good" and "bad" foods per se DO NOT EXIST; with moderation ALL types of foods for certain individuals can be enjoyed!

You need to be aware of the factors that can determine your response to specific foods are many, for instance your:
- Genetic Profile
- Neuroendocrine system
- Neuroimmune system
- Microbiome (Gut-Brain Axis)
- Physical Activity
- Sympathetic/Parasympathetic Nervous system dominance
- Stress
- Sleep

You’re probably asking where should you start with the information above. Perhaps the first step to consider would be a simple questionnaire that could help identify your nervous system that could help identify your nervous system just like some help discovering more about your relationship with food or feel like it’s time to bring your lifestyle and health goals together, book a refocus session with a Lab Coach.

Equally if you would like a more in depth approach towards your nutritional goals or eating habits, book a test drive with a Lab Pro.

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