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creating good food A personal philosophy of eating

Whilst a high percentage of humanity still experiences hunger and starvation, most of the remainder is suffering from malnutrition, in the wider sense of the word – meaning that people are badly nourished rather than under nourished. How on earth did we reach this state when civilisation has, in other areas, reached such a stage of sophistication? Food and diet are keystones of any culture – but, in this respect (though not only this), the foundations of modern human culture can only be described as extremely shaky. The only saving grace is that this is one sphere of activity where individuals may empower themselves to influence their own lives, though external encouragement may be a great help. In the first place, it is important to be thoughtful about how we eat. Obsession and guilt, however, have no positive role in achieving a sensible balance. We need to be aware of the disadvantages of poor eating habits, but only to the extent that the awareness enables us to achieve improvement. I think the ancient Greek saying ‘nothing in excess’ is nearly always appropriate, but especially in relation to food. This applies to excessive dieting as well as excessive eating.

It applies also to excessive preoccupation with food, whether the result is obesity, anorexia, or even an ideal body-shape.

In the second place there is nothing wrong with

enjoying food. In fact, this is a natural, healthy response. The greater and more prolonged the enjoyment the better, if it is associated with the whole process of preparing and consuming food. You can take control of your eating if you allow yourself the time. If you are constantly eating on the hoof, consuming food prepared by others, you will never be in control or feeling satisfied. It is often said that losing

weight is better achieved by

dropping a couple of pounds a week, than by suddenly shedding much more. The same approach is likely to be true of

improving our eating habits. So, setting aside one day a week when we really devote time and thought to all our meals, or deciding to prepare a salad for lunch or even just making our own sandwiches would be moves in the right direction. Substituting more nutritious snacks for high sugar bars is another example. Very few people adopt this sort of approach 100 percent of the time, so we can all aim to be closer to 100 percent and further from 0 percent!

We have monthly special offers on wholefoods. Call in store for details.

27 High Street Chesham Bucks HP5 1BG Tel: 01494 771267

The intention of writing this article is not to

preach or be prescriptive, but to put forward the suggestion that a more relaxed and more considered approach to diet and eating could reap benefits for us all. For those who would like practical help, guidance, or ideas on diet and nutrition, a local health store – like Healthright – is always a good first port of call.

Roger Oliver

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