Eating for pleasure and not feeling guilty is possible.
If you are following a diet that rules out most of the foods that make you happy, you will not succeed in changing your habits, at least not in the long run. Instead of opting for a drastic diet strategy, prefer one that teaches you to eat a little bit of everything without feeling guilty.
From deprivation to overeating:
Nowadays, in developed countries, plenty of food is accessible to a wide majority. Having food always available is no longer a concern for most of us.
Eating is a daily repetitive activity, and sometimes even trivial. Now this is where many of the problems of malnutrition lie (here malnutrition is about overeating and low quality food). Eating mindlessly, without savoring your food and without giving appropriate attention to what you eat causes poor eating habits. To say it simply, we tend to stuff food into our bodies instead of actually taking the time to enjoy and appreciate the subtleties of it.
The pleasure of eating :
Most of the time, parents actively care about feeding their children properly. They make sure the quality of what their kids eat is good and also try to ensure they get a variety of foods. This phase, when children discover different tastes and textures, will determine a part of the cultural background of an individual. It is this background (along with other factors) that is going to influence the eating habits of an adult. One of the problems is that once we are adults (or even teenagers) we have plenty of other preoccupations. We have to deal with more responsibilities, work schedules, lack of time, stress, peer pressure and so on… Eating often becomes secondary to our lives, a means to keep going and to maintain our activities.
But eating is more than an act of survival, it should also bring about a feeling of well-being and stimulate the senses. A pleasure which varies according to the preparation and the presentation of the food.
Often people justify their bad eating habits or their weight problems by the fact that they like to eat (!). But this theory is not really true. On the contrary! Losing weight without losing the pleasure of eating is possible. You cannot fully appreciate food if you eat fast while doing other activities for example.
How can I describe it? Good food is like music you can taste, color you can smell. There is excellence all around you. You need only to be aware to stop and savor it. Chef Auguste Gusteau, Ratatouille, 2007
All the best,