April 6, 2012 by marieelia
I think that the best way to make real and lasting change in your health is to have a partner. It’s true that food’s purpose is to nourish the body, but if eating weren’t meant to be enjoyable, why would there be so many tastes and textures? And what better way to explore them than with a friend?
I’ve always had an interest in food and its impact on my well-being, but this interest grew when I talked with my partner, C., about all of the research he had done to try to heal his health problems with nutrition. We both liked to cook, so learning things together and making meals together were natural activities. And for all I talk about not trying to be restrictive with a diet, there are just going to be times when you want the rush of sugar or the sensory enjoyment of a certain kind of food. Having a partner helps you decide whether you really do want a treat (in which case, I say have one), or whether you’re crashing or trying to meet some other, non-physical-hunger need.
But mostly I find that having a partner inspires me to try new things, learn about new foods or ways of cooking, and just have fun with it. I love the ritual of chopping vegetables and putting them into bowls to get ready to cook, and I like being able to point out the way the colors look as the food is cooking, or to appreciate the beauty of a great meal on the plate before we start eating. I like putting on music and working together to make something that we’ll enjoy, doing a little kitchen choreography around our not-so-ideally arranged counter space. The kitchen at mealtimes is a place we go to relax, recharge, reconnect. We inspire and teach each other, and learn together.
One book that C. introduced me to is Kristina Turner’s Self-Healing Cookbook: A Macrobiotic Primer for Healing Body, Mind and Moods with Whole Natural Foods. We constantly turn to this cookbook for recipe ideas and for inspiration to keep learning, keep looking at ways that good foods can heal and help our bodies.
I love the drawings and little words of encouragement throughout the book. This is my favorite:
“If you really want to learn to heal yourself with food, read this book with a friend. Do it however works best for you. Loan it, or read it outloud together. Cook together. Take turns cooking for each other. Challenge each other’s ideas. Get ridiculous together, in the kitchen. Slow down, when you taste together. And talk about how you feel, after you eat. Then you will know what macrobiotics is about.”
Get ridiculous together! Cooking and learning about food really is more fun when you do it together.