Food is a basic human need. Remember learning in school that food, water, shelter, clothing are our fundamental human needs for survival? Without food you'd die in just a few weeks (sooner without water). Simply being alive qualifies you to deserve food. But you wouldn't know this by the way we talk about food.
Ever heard someone say something like, "I work out so I can eat what I want," or, "We really earned our breakfast today." Implied is that food needs to be earned.
You also don't have to look very hard to find this messaging in the media. Or visit this website to find out how long you'd have to run to burn off your "sin food" (*cue my dramatic eye roll*).
To demonstrate this point to clients I usually point out that a person in a coma still needs food (since they can't eat it's fed to them via tube feeding). The calories and nutrients in the food are how our organs continue to function. This bare minimum amount of calories needed to keep you alive is called your basal metabolic rate. Any energy you expend on top of that (e.g. brushing your teeth, going to work our school, exercise) requires more fuel in the form of food.
So, you can see, it's not necessary to "earn" your food. You "deserve" it simply by being alive. And since you need to eat to stay alive, why not enjoy it by choosing satisfying foods? By listening to your body and eating mindfully you will give your body the nourishment it needs. No need to feel guilty for that.
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