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It’s clear that a great many of us eat too
much. And in response, a huge industry has

grown up which advises us to consume more
quinoa, pomegranate and fennel salad and,

as often as we can, kale and apple soup. But
this is entirely to misunderstand why we start

eating excessive amounts. It has nothing to
do food, and therefore trying to change our

diet isn’t the most logical place to focus
our efforts. We eat too much because what

we’re really hungry for isn’t available.
Of course, it looks as if everything we could

want should be to hand. Our supermarkets and
delis are iconic temples of consumer society.

Our restaurants spare no effort trying to
satisfy us.

Could sir or madam be tempted by lobster thermidor?
Or a selection of regional vegetables drizzled

with olive oil sourced from a tiny farm in
the Pyrenees? But if we could really choose

anything, wouldn’t we want a slightly different
menu? For example: Unstressed conversation

of father, marinaded in mutual forgiveness.
Tenderised maternal love* (* suitable for

those on a criticism-free diet).
Ripe friendship served on wry banter accompanied
by a side serving of affectionate teasing.

Fresh conversation, liberally sprinkled with
poignant anecdotes (for two). Sexual appreciation

with all the trimmings (our sommelier recommends,
as the ideal accompaniment, a glass of full-bodied

Chateau Fantaisie). And for dessert, perhaps
A generous scoop of honeyed insight.

In other words, it isn’t food we crave.
The menus of our actual restaurants (however

chic) prompt us only in very limited and restricted
directions. They understand – and respond

– to only a desperately narrow segment of
our true appetites. Collectively, we speak

so much of food, and so little of what we
properly need. It isn’t pizza, Spanish cheese

or Argentinian steak. We need friendship where
we can confess our darkest anxieties and be

heard and forgiven; we need help in calming
down at key moments, reassured that we can

withstand the very worst that may be coming
our way. We are lonely and angry within our

own families and are crying out for redemption
and cathartic honesty. We need someone who

can help us discover our real talents in the
workplace and offer us a guide to realise

our true potential. We know that, when reaching for a tube of
potato chips or biting into yet another burrito
that the problem doesn’t lie there. We just

don’t know where else to turn and there
is, at least, a short-term satisfaction to

be found. We eat too much because we hate
ourselves too intensely to have the necessary

respect for our own bodies. Our tragedy isn’t
our unconstrained appetite. But rather, the

difficulty we have in getting access to the
emotional and psychological things that would

nourish our broken souls. The diet industry
has latched onto the symptoms of our unhappiness,

not their causes – and therefore the solutions
it offers can only ever be temporary and fragile.

It can’t make us lastingly thin because
it is not engaging with what made us manically

fat. A couple of hundred years ago it was
almost impossible for most people to find

anything very pleasant to eat. Since then,
a vast quantity of human ingenuity has been

devoted to enticing the palate. We have succeeded
beyond our wildest expectations. But in so

many other areas, we have hardly begun to
supply ourselves reliably with what we long

to consume, which are, to put it plainly:
understanding, tenderness, forgiveness, reconciliation

and closeness. We eat too much not because
we are (as we brutally accuse ourselves) greedy,

but because we live in a world where the shelves
are still bare of the real ingredients we crave.

At The School Of Life we believe in developing emotional intelligence. To that end we have
also created a whole range of products to support that growth.
Find out more at the link on your screen now.
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【The School of Life】我們吃太多了? (Why We Eat Too Much)

401 分類 收藏
osmend 發佈於 2017 年 9 月 18 日
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