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Get Hungry

hungryDo you remember the first time you experienced real hunger? I grew up in a home that had plenty of food and access to it was a priority. I remember on family trips, my Mom would pack sandwiches and snacks, and we would pull over at a rest stop to eat at a picnic table on the side of the interstate. To this day, ham sandwiches taste the best when eaten outside. Many memories of my childhood include food, and I feel fortunate to say that hunger has no part in my reel.

Perhaps I was a young adult the first time I truly felt hunger; living on my own and responsible for what I bought, cooked and ate each day. I do remember enjoying the sensation, the growling belly with the hollow feeling of emptiness, and then pushing through it until a second, bigger wave came on. By that point I knew specifically what my body wanted and would make every effort to have exactly that. Few things are better in life than finding the food that will truly satisfy your hunger.

Nutrition experts tell us that it is best to eat several small meals through the day to avoid the highs and lows that come from indulging. I can totally understand this theory, but I believe it is meant for those who are physically active and intentionally choosing small, healthy portions throughout the day. I think this has become an excuse for the masses to eat all day, rarely tapping in to the true rhythms of our bodies.

What if we allowed ourselves to get hungry more often? I know that I often insulate myself from the feeling, mindlessly eating to stave off discomfort. What if we ate just enough at mealtime to be truly hungry again in a few hours? There is an element of trust involved, but I’m not even sure who we need to trust in this day and age. Most of us have access to food within a couple of miles of wherever we spend most of our time. Maybe we need to trust ourselves with some of our truest feelings.

This is not a campaign to feed the hungry. It may be a campaign to get hungry.

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9 responses »

  1. Vincy Abraham

    That last line there was quite a punchline. Thoughtful post.

    Reply
    • It’s the way I have been feeling for a while but can’t seem to keep in the forefront. I had a couple of hours of free time yesterday and was driving with no real plan or intention. I pulled over and asked myself, what do I want? I wanted to be in my kitchen, cooking with good music playing. So I turned around and went home. I was so close to filling that time with mindless shopping or just driving!

      Reply
  2. This was a very thought-provoking post.
    Everybody is always ready to eat, right? So what if we all were to adopt this mantra: “I will eat to live” instead of “I will live to eat” (?) There is so much obesity in the US, and too many of us live on fast food instead of eating at home with the family. Eating out once in a while is fine. That’s nice. Everyone needs a break from cooking sometime.

    Reply
  3. I was living alone in an apartment in my early twenties. I was without a job for a stretch and running low on money so I couldn’t afford much to eat. For two straight weeks I ate nothing but PB&J’s night and day. I remember walking in the grocery store and smelling all of the produce, something I was never aware of before. At one point i felt so deprived I stole a Hostess treat of some sort, not even real food. A neighbor across the hall must have sensed something was up because he started inviting me over for dinner with him. He even took me out to lunch as a treat a few times. There are good people in this world still.

    Reply
  4. I love how your senses were heightened because of a lack of variety. When I fast (which is rare) I notice and smell all food-related items, instead of taking them for granted. I want to have that kind of mentality more often; intentionally choosing what is most desirable instead of settling for what is easiest.

    Reply
  5. I 100% agree! My husband and I have actually been doing intermittent fasting for a few months with amazing results, the most life-changing of which is that we now welcome the feeling of hunger because – it actually can be a good thing!

    Reply

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