Living without food is truly a satisfying experience. At first the stomach growls and a deep empty feeling moves around in the gut, motivating the mind to focus only on hunger. Once the body realizes its pleadings aren’t being satiated the groaning goes away and the mind begins to see life through a new perspective. It still recognizes the need to fuel the body, and changes its pursuit from traditional food to reaching deep inside the heart and soul, keeping the furnace lit from intangibles such as our attitude and natural willpower to survive. True, the mind does get creative with the stomach, making dandelions and ants looks delicious, but amazingly the body feels full with only a meager volume.
Once returning to normal modern-day society the body is immediately overstimulated by the amount of food readily available. A few fork-fulls and suddenly the stomach feels bursting at the seams. However, it doesn’t take long for the stomach to expand and suddenly desire more and more. It’s incredible that although the body now has plentiful food again it doesn’t necessarily feel more energetic; in fact, oftentimes quite the opposite as the body feels like taking a siesta after a meal.
I’ve been lucky enough to experience this cycle this several times in my life. Although I don’t advocate anyone to suddenly stop eating for a week, I do hope you’ll be able to glean some wisdom from my experiences on the topic.
First, modern day society makes us think we need a lot more food than we actually do. Marketed portion sizes are outrageously large, especially for the American readers of this blog. Even an average American travelling abroad will experience a similar cycle to mine described above, as most cultures simply don’t consume as much volume, sugar, fats, and processed foods as we do. Our society promotes large portion sizes by incentivizing it (order an XL for only 50 cents more!,) or TV ads and programs engineered to make your brain thinks it needs to go out right this minute and order up that mouth-watering burger with bacon and onion rings, or call in a delivery of that fantastically-steamy meat lovers pizza. Solution: Stop watching TV! Additionally, we see tons of restaurants everywhere selling all the foods that our ancestors’ genes still scream at us to stock up on when given the opportunity: sweets and fats; and experiencing all these different restaurants has become a seemingly important part of attaining the well-cultured image that many people strive for.
Second, the more we overeat, and in turn get fat, the more those pesky fat cells call on our bodies to eat even more to sustain them. Its similar to the spiral of energy, with each food decision we make directly impacting future decisions. Remember: choices become routines, which become behaviors, which become lifestyles. On the flipside, the more we choose to eat a normal, healthy, natural diet, the less our bodies call out insatiably for more food. The naturally-fed body knows it is getting the essential nutrients to live full of vitality, and it rests satisfied knowing that it is healthier as a result.
Third, living off no food or tiny portions of fully natural food makes our bodies acutely aware of exactly what we are choosing to fuel itself with. Each plant we choose to ingest is analyzed for its source, cleanliness, color, odor, and carefully brought to our lips to fuel our minds. Each animal we choose to eat, whether it be an ant, a rabbit, a fish, or a hunted deer, is consciously killed knowing that it’s body and soul will nourish our body and soul, and we are thankful for it’s sacrifice. We can feel our energy levels increasing and our minds becoming sharper after a naturally-nourishing meal. Later, when we return to modern day civilization’s endless supply of food all the more acutely aware of our senses and food intake, we can immediately sense the foreign compounds in preserved or processed food, or the outrageous amounts of sugar in most dishes, or the obscene amounts of fat present in some plates. We sense our energy levels becoming out of sync with the more natural rhythms we grew accustomed to on the fully natural diet. And deep down inside we feel emptier for the pointless calories we are throwing in our body without having fully earned them.
Fourth, living without teaches us that we can overcome challenges. Our minds are incredibly strong and naturally engineered to keep us alive in the toughest of times, yet today’s society barley ever tests those limits. Anytime we get a chance to push our minds and bodies it allows ourselves the opportunity to grow: making us fitter, smarter, more confident. The continual pushing of our boundaries will keep us sharp as a species, ensuring that we remain able to live to our fullest potential in our beautiful world.
Bottom Line: Reducing your food intake will make you more aware of what you choose to fuel your body with, it’ll help you see through societal pressures to overeat, and it’ll make us a fitter species.
Did you find this post interesting? If so, check out our website at www.minmylife.org. If the subject material of this blog post caught your attention, I recommend starting with our post on the Happiest People in the World.