MHM 9/12/16: The Social Aspects of Eating

September 12, 2016 in Recovery

Hi guys and happy Monday!! How was everyone’s weekend?? Another week is here, and another weekend is gone (which is crazyyyy)! But it’s another chance to accomplish our goals, get a fresh start, and remember all the things we have to be thankful for. Monday’s don’t have to be that bad! Anyways, going to be posting a Mental Health Monday and linking up with Julia today! Let’s get started. 🙂

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When we think of eating, we think of giving our bodies fuel, duh! We eat when we are hungry because if we didn’t have food, we would die. Simple as that. And when we don’t give our bodies food, we get hella cranky and feel extra week. Everyone knows all that stuff. Fuel your bodies with all the nutrients, eat the fun stuff too; simple, right? But we all know that’s not true, because everyone complicates every sort of situation around food. I think Americans win 1st place at that!

Eating is obviously vital for us to stay alive, yet eating is something that is so much more than simple chugging a green smoothie every single day. There’s one important aspect I wanted to touch on today: the social aspects of eating. You know, going out to eat, ice cream, drinks, a party, etc. etc. All of that stuff is so much fun! But it isn’t fun when your mind is in the gutter and is constantly stressing about food. I’ve been there, you’ve probably been there at some point too. “This menu only has greasy foods and I probably shouldn’t get dessert because then I’ll feel too full and bloated etc. etc. etc.” I’ve had those exact thoughts before, and my goodness I am extremely thankful that my brain isn’t swarmed with those thoughts anymore. I was finally able to realize one day that there is a whole other aspect to eating different than filling our bodies with nutrient dense foods and eating to give us energy. There is the social aspect. The part of eating where you go out to lunch with a friend to catch up or grab ice cream with a family member to spend some quality time with them. Eating is a social activity, and it naturally brings human beings together. It is something we all have in common: we need to eat to survive. We all like the taste of food. And food gives us something to bond over. So the social aspect of eating is a very important one; and one that I neglected for far too long.

There are times when I go out to eat with friends and I’m not necessarily “hungry,” but I go to be social and I still order what sounds good to me and what I’m craving. There are times when I have some dessert because eating dessert with your friends is just fun, and I don’t want to miss out on that. There are times when I’ve gone home super bloated but didn’t care because the memories I created won’t fade but that bloated belly will. For me, creating these memories with the ones I love is so much more valuable than sitting at home and refusing to go out to a restaurant because it is not “healthy” or I am not “hungry enough.” I go and every time I do go, I never regret it. We are able to laugh and smile and chat over something so beautiful and amazing that God gave us: food. Something that should not be feared; but something that should be celebrated and enjoyed with great company and the ones that we cherish the most.

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Just the other night I had one of these moments where I recognized how important the social aspects of eating really are. It was 12:30 a.m. and some friends wanted to get mozzarella sticks. So I went with them, and I got and enjoyed some mozzarella sticks. I wasn’t hungry yet I wanted to join in on the fun and bond with these awesome people. And I love some mozzarella sticks every now and then. So I ate and enjoyed those mozzarella sticks guilt free, because that’s how eating should be. Guilt free. I am so happy I went with them because if I didn’t, I would’ve missed out on some awesome conversations and being surrounded by some incredible people.

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I really do understand that it is so incredibly difficult to trust this process; it is so hard to get yourself to go out to eat sometimes because you feel like you don’t “deserve it.” In those moments, you need to have faith. Because “Faith IS taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” Accept the process, accept the fact that eating isn’t always going to be something to give us tons of energy and provide us with fuel. It can be fun and good for the soul. Accept the fact that the social aspect of eating IS actually fun when you take that first step, when you go out and you are more engaged with those around you than the worry and stress of the food that will be on your plate. Accept the fact that the social aspect of eating brings us all together and allows us to create such beautiful memories. Accept the idea that the social aspect of eating IS a crucial one for our well-being, because we should all be able to go out and get a freaking ice cream cone with our friends and the one’s we love without having a second thought about it or feeling any guilt over it.

Now tell me any thoughts you have on this! Do you agree that the social aspect of eating is such a valuable thing in our lives?

Thanks for reading loves and your constant support!! Means so so much to me <3 Have a happy Monday and a great start to your week! 🙂

Xoxo,

Lyss <3

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27 Comments

  • Reply Emily September 12, 2016 at 2:55 pm

    I completely agree with this Lyss; the social aspect of eating is one of the blessings of eating. God made us for relationships, and it’s so awesome to be able to share that with others and not just be alone.
    Emily recently posted…Why Putting Down Other Bloggers is Not RightMy Profile

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:23 pm

      God did make us for relationships, and it is so great to expand those relationships and bond with others over food, coffee, etc. Thanks for reading Em!

  • Reply Claire @ My Pink & Green Life September 12, 2016 at 5:18 pm

    The social aspect of eating is SO important! If we think about it, human cultures were built around gathering food and then gathering together to eat for such a long time. Even though we don’t have to work so hard for our food anymore, the social piece of it will always be really important to our mental health.
    Claire @ My Pink & Green Life recently posted…Travel: Exploring Hilo & Akaka Falls State ParkMy Profile

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:22 pm

      the social piece of it is SO important for our mental health- amen to that!!

  • Reply Ania Grzeszczak September 12, 2016 at 7:34 pm

    Very very grateful for this post. I’ve been reading your blogs for a super long time and I luv ’em all, but this one really sticks out to me. So tempted to print it and put it in my journal hehe.

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:21 pm

      that means SO much to me- thank you love!! You are so sweet <3

  • Reply Marina @ A Dancer's Live-It September 12, 2016 at 8:11 pm

    Amazing post as always, Lyss!! <3 I totally agree, eating good food with other people is one of my favorite activities in the whole world! I'm so grateful that I was able to do that this weekend: eat greasy, game-day food, drink hard cider, and have an awesome time. No regrets! Love "the belly bloat fades but the memories last forever". YES!! Love you babe!!!
    Marina @ A Dancer’s Live-It recently posted…Friday Top 3’s: #12My Profile

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:20 pm

      same here- i love lunch dates and coffee dates with friends- they are so much fun!! being able to bond with loved ones over a meal is the best 🙂 and i love YOU!

  • Reply Megan Hallier September 12, 2016 at 8:41 pm

    This is so great because it is something that people seem to overlook. Food has such an incredible way of bringing us together. I honestly didn’t even realize how much my obsession with food affected my life until coming to college and seeing how different I was compared with my fellow students.
    Megan Hallier recently posted…Living in a society that breeds eating disordersMy Profile

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:19 pm

      my obsession with food affected my life tremendously as well. I love seeing people in college so carefree around food- makes me so happy!

  • Reply Kristy from Southern In Law September 12, 2016 at 9:28 pm

    Food really does bring us together! For me that was one of the hardest things to deal with when finding out I had coeliac disease. All of a sudden I went from the person who loved hosting dinner parties and having lunches out with friends to someone who couldn’t eat out at friends house or restaurants and had to accept that whilst food is something involved in celebrations – it’s the friendships that make it important! I guess I had to have an entirely different view of food as now I have to look at celebrations for the people rather than food!
    Kristy from Southern In Law recently posted…Recipe: Healthy Zucchini Bread Baked Oatmeal (Vegan)My Profile

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:18 pm

      thank you so much for reading kristy! like you said, it is the friendships that make it important 🙂

  • Reply Ellie Pell September 12, 2016 at 11:46 pm

    I was reminded of this yesterday when I finally, FINALLY made time to get together with my sister. I don’t often think I am missing out on something when I don’t go out to eat with other people, yet I thoroughly enjoyed spending this time with her. We planned to do it again soon.
    I think social eating can be hard with difficult people. People who pick apart everything you eat and make you second guess your choices. Luckily, your friends and my sister are not like that. We just enjoy food and EAT!
    Ellie Pell recently posted…Running Links [09/11/2016]My Profile

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:17 pm

      i’m so glad you went out with your sister and had a good time! people can pick apart what you eat and that can be so frustrating, but learning to ignore that has helped me tremendously!

  • Reply Heather @ Polyglot Jot September 13, 2016 at 12:04 am

    This is a great post–it used to give me anxiety and now I realize it made me miss out on certain fun events in the past. Now, I enjoy the social aspect. Good for you–and sounds delicious!
    Heather @ Polyglot Jot recently posted…5 Reasons I ExerciseMy Profile

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:16 pm

      enjoying the social aspect of eating is so crucial for our well-being! no one wants to miss out on fun events just bc of the fear of food!

  • Reply Kate September 13, 2016 at 12:22 am

    I love that you mention having faith and trusting the process. I feel like for a lot of recovery we are blindly walking to the light, trusting it turns out for the best. Thank God, because it really does!
    Kate recently posted…Tacos, football, and apologiesMy Profile

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:15 pm

      trusting the process was so essential for me as well Kate! having faith can really make a difference

  • Reply Stephanie September 13, 2016 at 1:27 am

    Alyssa this was an excellent post. So very insightful and honest! So eat and enjoy and enjoy to eat!
    Sometimes healthy sometimes not it is ok! Just like life everything in moderation.
    Love ya!!

  • Reply Megan September 13, 2016 at 3:01 pm

    YES the social aspect is SO important. One of the hardest parts of my recovery was letting go of that anxiety of eating freely around other people and just going with the flow. Food isn’t just fuel, food brings people together. If you try to avoid that you will probably just isolate yourself.
    I love this –> “the memories I created won’t fade but that bloated belly will”

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:13 pm

      so true! avoiding food in social settings will just lead to isolation which is never good by any means! Thank you so much for reading!!

  • Reply Sarah September 13, 2016 at 8:44 pm

    Such an important topic! Faith really is the first step and what has kept me going since I started my “real-recovery” a little over a week and a half ago.
    Sarah recently posted…Top 3 Friday #3My Profile

  • Reply Edye September 13, 2016 at 11:26 pm

    Eating is such a social thing!! I’ve reconnected with so many people over a cup of coffee or made such good memories with late night ice cream dates :]
    Edye recently posted…Enrich Your LifeMy Profile

    • Reply Alyssa September 15, 2016 at 3:11 pm

      I love doing that Edye 🙂 Catching up with someone over a cup of coffee is the best! Same with ice cream dates 🙂
      Alyssa recently posted…Bliss nut butter reviewMy Profile

  • Reply Monday must-reads! - Apron Strings and Sticky Fingers October 2, 2016 at 7:06 pm

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