Psychology: ‘the scientific study of the human mind and its functions, especially those affecting behaviour in a given context’
… is a part definition of Psychology and in this context I like to shed personal light on mental health and dietary involvement.
We human being is social groups and social species regardless which race we come from, we need connection emotionally and physically above all else to survive as a group, as society, as family and as individuals; this is proven in history again and again, specially when people living through wars, hardships and even in concentration camp¹. When our emotional connections is being threatening or cut out, physical self (body) loss its feeding energy source and contract from the inside (cells), one can see someone facial expression changes, deep breathing, uncomfortable body languages, the best place to see these changes is in the EYES (window to the soul), these contractions happen naturally throughout all cells in the body few seconds only, then our intellectual mind corrects our posture, motions and behaviours back to social norm, or whatever is expected or acceptable at that given moment/time.
This natural behaviour happens/occurs to everyone of us constantly 24/7 as we exchange energy with the universe, while we sleep, eat, breath, listen, walk the park; at home when we feel the need of fresh air, we open window and door naturally, however in the office when the boss slightly suffocating us, we took deep breath, or twirl pencil around fingers in rotation motion as if to refresh the air flow; when we feel pressure at dinner table at home, we tighten the grip for fork and spoon/knife or unconsciously crunch the napkin under the table, without knowing why. Of course bigger scales of this behaviour between expansion (taking deep breath, pulling in extra energy source of oxygen, smiling, laughing, being silly, falling in love) and contraction (disappointment, heart break, anger, someone cutting you off on the way to the office, shares value plummet due to covid 19) dominate our lives and our lives are on the balance, when the balance is tipped over to either side for a long time before showing physically on our body; during the balance being tipped over is the period of mental health or our psychological balancing is compromised.
Strictly speaking food has little to do with our emotional or feeling body; mentally we need love in order to live. Food is only information to help guiding our body to deal with emotional body better, to cope better when contraction strikes and this is when the word binge eating comes in – eating for comfort. One can kill someone else who one has connection to, just simply ignore the person completely, let the person rots in their wrecked emotional state² – I speak from personal experience as social worker in Germany – everyone denied it, of course if one does not want to look beyond what the eyes can’t see, an elephant in the room, but it is what it is and it is not in my place to have an opinion on it – it really hurts me.
Let’s talk about food and its connection to our mental and physical health. Everyone knows we need food in order to live, sure and there are many different ways to live, as the saying goes all roads lead to Rome. Therefore one’s Rome depends on one’s definition of his/her/its Rome! Rome with its colosseum where one’s pleasure derives from blood being drawn, or Rome with opera house and The Four Seasons (Vivaldi) with love and inspiration for generations to come. Food that sustains our cells hold similar vibration to the meaning of our lives, and therefore our life purpose. Try holding a piece of steak on one hand and an apple on the other asking yourself – steak or apple? See how your body reacts³ (and try for 1 split second not to judge yourself and your action; keep your intellectual mind out of it for the exercise). We are all differently and uniquely in term of what we serve and offer to the world we live in and therefore food may potentially one of the keys to guide one to reach the best potential possible.
Single cell organisms, bacteria and plants exist long before modern humans walk the planet, so who is our best possible guide to be well survive and thrive? Let’s take pharmaceutical produce and genetic modified crops/plants out of this context as they are man-made-end-product, no matter where one finds them in fields, greenhouses or your back gardens. Dandelion, nettle, burdock, rocket (not the one made by NASA) and a few other veggie making a very scrumptious salad, bitter and very refreshing but of course most people would spit it right out. Wild vegetables, fruits, berries and plants live with constant battle with the elements since time begins, the adaptation and information passing through from species and generation to generation is well stored, we (our cells) can learn and integrate that well into our physique. Our alimentary canal in average is more than 4 times longer than our body, so food takes much longer to pass through our body. Our digestive system takes up most of our energy to process our meals; when one is not active all our energy is spent in the gut; hence the faster the food passing through, the more body (cells) spares energy to spend somewhere else such as healing, repairing, thinking. Have you ever heard or seeing people eating before performing sport? For me, never!
Personally I’d like to consume light food (as opposite to heavy) as it makes me feel great. By light I mean literally plants that pointing up (defy gravity) mostly leaves and heavy food makes me sleepy (grains, bulbs, roots), and fruits make me pee non-stop – very cleansing by the way and meat puts me to sleep – I seriously need a siesta; has anyone seen cows fly? This is how my cells make food benchmark for me best food to worse one and therefore it is my choice and free will to choose how I want to feel on a daily basis, as I can take charge and control my thoughts, emotions and actions 99% of the time. However, I don’t make food consumption a religion, I go along with other people in social groups, like you, I’d like to be loved and accepted in society. There you have my take of diet – in a nutshell.
Good and balance diet plays major part in emotion and mental well being, and whatever your benchmark is, up to you, follow one’s feeling never far off the tract. Our feelings are important guiding systems to survive and thrive; most of us in the modern livings suppress our feelings with whatever we do daily, nicotine, alcohol, sex, YouTube, podcast, TV, shopping, big house, expensive car . . . . . you pay so much attention to everything els outside but you, you is your body. One can be rich, poor, handsome, ugly, successful, but the only person would stay with you till the day you die is you/your body. ‘what would one gain if one owned the whole world but lost one’s soul?’⁴
So, physically your body is your soul, would you not want to look after your soul? Would you having an organic apple from your friend farmer, that make you pee and cleanse your colon? Or would you have a devious apple pie/apple strudel with cream on it? Both are natural, and has apples 🙂 ? One makes you pee, one makes you fat! Choice is your and stop making lame excuse! Food that is simple, integrates faster into our cells, if it moves faster 2-3 hrs through our alimentary canal, from my opinion and my mentors, are best (fresh fruits & veg), the longer it stays, the less agility and more lethargic one becomes.
Is there a connection between our gut, feeling good, or mental well being? Who put the notion into children, rubbing their bellies when having something yummy and say tum-tum? Is it from commercial TV? One will find lots of experts connecting these dots together.
Don’t worry about a thing, for every little things gonna be alright (thank Marley, RIP) and I am being honest⁵; I dedicate my life to live a happy life, regardless what people think of me, and that is a huge sacrifice, meaning lost a lot of people around me or the other word, people have to catch up with me or left behind (metaphorically speaking) and I found myself in this position of push & pull (expanding & contracting) all the time, with what goes to one’s mouth, if one does not make a conscious choice right here and now, one almost never will. I think Covid 19 as perfect example of the universe stops humanity on its tract, to be conscious of its actions, which us individually can control our own actions, to larger extent.
I fight constant battle (love one) with my family daily, how to be conscious of our actions in the kitchen (as the main area I can control), as I want to look after my family, not leave it to the State (social workers) to look after in future, as future never happens if we don’t live consciously now.
¹ Man’s search for meaning (1946 Viktor Frankl)
² Rice experiment of Dr Masaru Emoto – The hidden message in the water 2004
³ Timeless Secretes of Health & Rejuvenation – Andreas Moritz 2005
⁴ from New Testament, but I don’t remember the chapter
⁵ How to Stop Worrying & Start Living – Dale Carnegie 1948
P.S.: I am a health fanatic and started online business on cell food, as a result from looking for better life style and alternative remedies, as my love one was very very sick. You can find me and see what I do for a living after quitting social worker care position. www.healthfoodretail.com & www.etsy.com/shop/reefgekko I do not earn a living from affiliate commission of the books I listed above. I own and read most books on Aljoscha’s list. I am pleased that Aljoscha invited me to write an article on food & mental health, this article may not what he aims for or wants to convey message to his audience, but it is my personal experience and thoughts on the two words mentioned. It flows through me as I write in the middle of the night without any editing, full of energy and vibration. If anything sounds rude or offends anyone, my apology.
With Love and Gratitude, Sokuntheary Kernick, Nordrhein-Westfalen
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