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Food as a Proxy for Life

Food as a Proxy for Life

I have often heard it said that our relationship with food mimics our relationship with life.  I have been thinking about this a great deal lately, as it seems to be true in my life.  As someone who suffered from an eating disorder for years, my rigidly controlled eating patterns gave me solace.  I knew exactly how many calories I was going to eat every day.  And I knew I was not going to gain weight.  As someone who tends to fear uncertainty, this control was very comforting to me.

It was also very limiting, however.  I couldn’t go out to dinner with friends – or to any social function where there would be food.  And when I did, I made up excuses for why I wasn’t eating.  It was unhealthy both for my body and my spirit.  I wanted so deeply to change, but I was afraid of the unknown.  I couldn’t envision my life without the constraints I had so carefully built up.  Eventually, however, my desire to change and be free of my self-imposed limitations overcame my fear of the unknown and I was able to dramatically change my eating habits.  Suddenly, I found myself going to restaurants and cooking more than I ever had in the past.  I was actually enjoying food.  It was an overnight transformation that was actually years in the making.

Recently, I have been experiencing the same emotions in other areas of my life.  I still fear uncertainty, and it is sometimes difficult for me to have faith in my decisions.  The result is that I often stagnate, unable to choose a path.  I realize that this way of relating to the world is, on some level, a choice.  I could choose to have more faith.  But I haven’t because I can’t yet see what my life would be like if I were to suddenly be able to make decisions without the endless analysis and doubt.  The very fear of uncertainty that I want to conquer is what is keeping me from progressing.  But just as I did when I changed my eating habits, I know I will get to the point where my desire to move away from habits that no longer serve me will one day overcome my fears.

And I am certain I am not the only one to recognize the parallels between the ways in which I approach food and other patterns in my life.  Our attitudes toward food are a valuable window into deeper emotional issues.  Therefore, exploring our eating habits cam be healing both for the body and the spirit.


Read more: Food, Health, Life, Mental Wellness, Self-Help, Spirit, Women's Health

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Sarah Cooke

Sarah Cooke is a writer living in California. She is interested in organic food and green living. Sarah holds an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Naropa University, an M.A. in Humanities from NYU, and a B.A. in Political Science from Loyola Marymount University. She has written for a number of publications, and she studied Pastry Arts at the Institute for Culinary Education. Her interests include running, yoga, baking, and poetry. Read more on her blog.


+ add your own
12:01AM PDT on Apr 14, 2013


11:40PM PDT on Apr 13, 2013

Very interesting!

8:14AM PDT on Mar 19, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

7:26PM PDT on Mar 14, 2013


3:06AM PDT on Mar 12, 2013


5:22PM PDT on Mar 11, 2013

Very interesting.

5:05AM PDT on Mar 10, 2013

Let's eat a healthy life out

1:21AM PST on Mar 10, 2013


12:16AM PST on Mar 10, 2013


9:02PM PST on Mar 9, 2013

Thank you

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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