How to Eat Food: A 10 Step Guide

I talk a lot about what to eat, and why. This time, let's talk about the How.



  1. Dining Camaraderie. It is best to eat our meals within the company of those we love, at the same time, and at the same table. Though clearly this is not a convenient or viable option much of the time, it is the gold standard to shoot for as often as we can. We are a social creature. We experience our most conducive state for digestion when we partake of our meals together in an environment of camaraderie, comfort, security, friendship, and love. If a dining companion isn’t available, simply think about how much you love the people you love (and why) while you’re eating at least once during the meal.


  2. Cooking with Love. When preparing food, think thoughts of love for all who will partake in it (even if it’s just you). Infuse your food with the lightest, fondest, and most joyful components of your heart. Become taken with the happiness of knowing that you will be providing all of the amazing sensations and feelings of contentment for whoever’s eating it. They say “Love’s the most important ingredient” for a reason. The preparation of food is a ritual, and our thoughts/emotions continuously cast spells upon it. We could word it in fancier terms of course; people these days tend to prefer explanations that comply with the physical religion of science. In such jargon, we could discuss the manner in which our state of consciousness alters the electromagnetic field surrounding each of us all the time, and how this field directly alters the structural latticework of the water molecules contained in the food you’re preparing, and how the structure of these latticeworks has a direct effect on the ways certain molecules move throughout solution, thereby influencing digestion.


  3. Gratitude. Give thanks, for you have food to eat. Give thanks, because it delights your pallet, and fills your belly. This is a common practice amongst the religious community, and it is imperative. Not religious? Don’t need to be, just be thankful. Even secularly, it’s not hard to come to the realization that it’s rather lucky of us to even find ourselves in a position where we have food to eat. We live in a society of plenty, but there are billions of people out there who know starvation intimately. How lucky for us that we don’t have to suffer a reality of perpetual hunger. Our culture recommends eating a protein source at all three meals of the day. Had we been less lucky, we might only being eating a meal every few days, with protein sources few and far between at that. When we infuse our every bite with a sense of gratitude, we further strengthen our body’s functions of digestion and assimilation. Food made with love and consumed in thanks is a treasure for all parties, and they will all reap much more nutrition from the energetic investment of efficient digestion because of it.


  4. Bad Vibes Hurt Digestion. We shouldn't eat when we're upset or otherwise riled-up. Just don’t. You’ll probably get bloated and maybe even have some gas, but regardless the food isn’t going to digest properly in such a state. Digestion is governed by the parasympathetic nervous system, which is the half that deals with chillin-out. When we’re upset, our bodies are running off the sympathetic half, which is all about stressin-out. Being anxious, mad, sad, or otherwise feeling negative in some way keeps the chillin-out half from turning on, so the enzymes and bile n stuff that you need to break all that shit down don’t get made as much as they need to, and your meal just kinda sits in your gut till you calm down enough for inside work to get done. This is why being calm, around loving people, and focusing on feelings of gratitude and contentment are important, because these things help steer the body towards utilizing the chillin-out half of the nervous system.


  5. Abandon Pointless Guilt. On a similar vein: If you happen to be eating something that could possibly be considered “unhealthy” or otherwise “junk food”, don’t be the asshole that is constantly berating yourself for doing it. Check it out dude, you already made the decision to eat the shitty food, and the shitty food is already going to have its shitty effects on your insides, but you’re not helping a damn thing by throwing around feelings of guilt and negativity while you’re eating it. In fact, you’re really only making it all worse, because on top of having to process a bunch of mildly toxic material, your body now has to do so with limited digestive faculties because you’re introducing elements of stress and guilt into the matrix of stimuli. Remember, the way that your body views the food being brought within it is very much dependent upon your state of consciousness while you’re eating. Wanna eat that apple-cinnamon strudel from the coffee shop? Enjoy the shit out of it. Wanna pig-out on a garbage plate (cheesburg-plate mac home-fry extra everything add bacon)? Love every bite. The best way to deal with the less-than-healthy foods that we get cravings for here and there is to love them, not hate on em. I hear people all the time casting hexes upon themselves while they’re eating, “This is gonna go straight to my ass,” “I’m gonna feel so fat after this,” “I feel so guilty but it tastes so good,” “I’m gonna have to stay on the treadmill for an extra hour after this meal to burn all this shit off.” Stop. If you’ve already made up your mind to eat it, eat it with joy. At the very least, give your body the psychological means to deal with questionable food in stride. Sometimes the happiness or nostalgia of eating a certain "unhealthy" food can be quite therapeutic. Negativity just amplifies the toxic nature of the junk food.


  6. Mastication is key. Chew your food. Like, a lot. There is only one form of matter that your body is good at digesting, and that’s liquid. Everything that goes down your throat needs to be a liquid to maximize particle surface-area interactions in the gut and minimize the amount of energy expenditure needed to further break everything down for assimilation. Most people barely chew their food, and just swallow whole chunks. This is wrong. You got teeth and mouth enzymes for a reason— the mouth is the first, and arguably THE MOST important digestive organ, and in our modern society of rushing and impatience we have moved away from properly employing it. If the food you’re eating is tough to chew, it’s about 10x harder to break down chemically. Meats especially need to be thoroughly chewed down to a nice slop before swallowing, because our guts don’t have many protease enzymes, which means chunks of meat tend to stay in the gut far too long. On average, each bite of food you take needs to be chewed between 50-100 times to completely saturate it with the mouth's saliva and break it down to the state that it will be best received by the gut. Everything that goes down your throat needs to be a liquid first, otherwise keep on chewing.


  7. Practice Mindfulness. Talk before the meal. Talk after the meal. Don’t talk so much while you’re eating the meal. Set your phone aside. Focus on chewing. Focus on the sensations the food is creating in your mouth and in your stomach. Being mindful of the process of eating is really important, so take an extra second or two to engage your other senses as well.


  8. Know when to Stop. 1st burp? Getting close to being properly filled. 2nd burp? You’re good, stop eating. Our society of plenty is infatuated with the idea of filling our stomachs to their absolute capacity, and this is wrong. It is quite ineffective to completely fill the stomach with digestible material, because then there is no more space left for the accumulation of the gasses being generated through the interaction of the stomach acid/bile/enzyme complex with the food matter. You don’t want to be completely full, when you are digestion is inhibited because there is too much of a load to properly deal with all the stuff that needs to take place. Ideally, your stomach should be filled 50% with food, 25% with water (there’s usually plenty in the food), and the remaining 25% should be left available for gas circulation. This is why you should stop eating after burp number two, its a simple indicator to cease ingestion because it says that there is a decent amount of space for gas circulation.


  9. Drinking and Eating are Two Separate Activities. Don’t drink a lot of water within a half-hour pre-meal, during the meal, or until a half-hour after the meal. Water kicks ass, don’t get me wrong, but so does stomach acid. When you drink water around meal time, you are diluting the pH of the stomach, which makes it less effective at doing its job. Don’t do it. If you need something to sip on during the meal, whatever, but if you’re gulping down a drink alongside a hearty meal, be prepared for some gas and bloating later on.


  10. Feast, then Fast. Shoot for eating primarily complete meals, and avoid snacks. I know this is a topic of debate out there, but I haven’t the faintest idea why. I think the majority of the nutritionists out there are working off the bogus idea that little bits here and there is a good thing because it “stokes the metabolic flames” and other asinine ideas like that. That’s bullshit, save for specific medical conditions (e.g. type one diabetes) which require more regulated consumption. Feast, and Fast, and Feast, and Fast. That’s how our digestive systems thrive. Say you ate a complete breakfast (whatever that means for you), then eat a snack a few hours later. Guess what? You just screwed up the digestion of the breakfast. Why? Because the new food is way more not-you than the food you already ate a while ago. The body views this new invader with priority, and thus diverts the majority of digestive energy towards producing more stomach stuff rather than intestinal stuff for digesting. That breakfast is now going to sit in the intestinal tract until all the new stuff is done being nationalized in the stomach, wasting energy and letting all the good nutrients get stolen by gut flora before you can get to them, or just rotting (in the case of meat). Realistically, average people benefit most from eating only 1-2 meals per day. This is because most people’s digestive systems blow. Whereas our normal transit time (time from eating to pooping something out) is supposed to be between 12-18 hours, most people take around a day, even two (many people even longer than that), to accomplish the same task. Constantly interrupting digestive work to nationalize new invading possible pathogens (new food) wastes a lot of energy and produces a lot of waste. Shoot for at least 6 hours between meals, and consider trying intermittent fasting to give your digestive system a break for long enough to finish all the shit it’s currently working on making. If your last "complete meal" isn't nutritionally strong enough to give you six measly hours without experiencing hunger, then it wasn't very "complete" now, was it? The goal is to give the body the maximum amount of new building materials while minimizing how much it costs to extract those materials from whatever-the-hell you're eating.



live.in.freedom

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