Eating food has been such an integral part of our existence and provision of nutrition for sustenance. Recently, I have stumbled upon certain facts about eating mindfully, which means that you are using all of your physical and emotional senses to experience and enjoy the food choices you make. This helps to increase gratitude for food, which can improve the overall eating experience.
Once upon a time, maybe even before the advent of time, we humans were essentially hunters and gatherers. We were those nomads, who would travel from one place to another in search of food, would hunt in the wild, and gather nuts and fruits. During the Paleolithic period, we understood the usage of fire to render and boil food. But it was only until about 12,000 years ago when agriculture and animal domestication emerged, we started growing our own food. Ever since then, we have tried million- zillions of ways to make food not only easier to digest and provide nutrition but also provide appeal to the pleasure of eating.
The pleasure of eating food is so much more than simply putting a few ingredients together and heating it up. It’s an entire sensory experience, from first laying eyes on the food to the remnants of last morsel, that you love to lick off your plate. It’s a multi-sensory perception, including taste, touch, sight, sound, and smell and the ways they influence each other.
We’ve all been biologically conditioned to know what something will taste like by its color - generally, red has sweeter properties (e.g. summer berries) and yellow and orange will lean on the sour side (e.g. citrus fruits association), or brown is associated with rotten fruit and vegetables. Our brains evolved this habit when the availability of food resources was scarce, and searching for nutritious food was vital.
Traditionally our kitchens were the sources of our medicines. Many condiments were added to regular food for medicinal purposes. We gradually included them in daily lives as they added, color, taste, aroma, and texture to make food flavorsome
Here are some of my suggestions to be added some color to your food plate to give you natural visual appeal:
- Greens: leaves and veggies like broccoli, avocado
- Yellow: turmeric powder, yellow bell pepper, fruits like mangoes
- Orange: saffron, carrots, sweet potato
- Red: red chili powder, red bell pepper, tomato, pomegranates, beet
- Violet: eggplant, berries, red cabbage
- Brown: coffee, cocoa
Hence, while adding ingredients to meals, do consider
- Why you chose it?
- What makes it look edible?
- Does it contribute to satiation?