Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Day #3 Food Insecurity

I've known for years that I suffer from food insecurity. I buy way more than I need, way more than I can eat.  However, I don't think having a lot of food around has made me fat. Eating a lot of high-fat, high-sugar (aka calorie-dense) foods has made me fat. Eating pretty much whatever I want has made me fat. Eating in front of the TV has made me fat.

But among the emotional components of my overeating is the need to have food--plenty of choices and plenty of quantity--available to me. I do not like being hungry. It makes me anxious, it makes me panicky. And so when I went shopping Sunday afternoon for the first week of the food program, I bought an awful lot of food. Granted, some of it is stuff that will last (a box of stevia packets, a huge jar of raw almond butter, etc.) But I bought lots of veggies and fruit, four bags of food instead of the usual two.

Of course, kale and spinach and apples and bananas take up a lot of space. And clearly, I had little idea of what it will take to fill me up or how much of anyone thing I can tolerate or enjoy. And that will sort itself out. But I shopped as if I were headed to the hinterlands where nothing would be available and not just a few blocks down the street. I shopped as if a lot of food could save me.

In keeping with the wisdom of the mid-1940s, I was bottle-fed and I've long suspected I was fed on a schedule. Mothers were admonished back then to feed their babies every four hours. I don't know if this was for convenience or a sense of discipline or trying to move us to three meals a day from the get go. But I suspect I was hungry a lot and that it created some kind of survival anxiety in me. Many of my age peers talk of having the same relationship with food.

One of my challenges in the months ahead is to come to a different, gentler understanding of my hunger and its place in my life,

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