Happy Belly, Happy Life

When I was just a little kid, I remember never wanting to eat. My parents would have to force me to sit at the dinner table and beg for me to eat my food. It didn’t help that I was a picky eater and I only wanted to eat fried foods like chicken nuggets and french fries all the time. I was a pretty skinny kid growing up, with others always mentioning that I needed to eat more.

But something changed when I hit puberty. All of a sudden in 6th grade, as I was growing several inches by the month, I started to have an insatiable appetite, always trying to get my hands on any food I could get. I started to explore and venture into other foods that I would not normally want to eat, such as burgers, salads, ethnic foods, etc., most of which I would have refused to eat as a kid.

So by the time I was in high school, I was eating and loving all different kinds of foods. I would always eagerly ask my family which restaurant we were going to eat out at for the week. I was always excited to meet friends at a restaurant, in large part because of the food. If the term was around back then, I would have considered myself a “foodie”. Today, now that I am an older adult, I am definitely not the skinny kid I used to be. In fact, I am quite a bit on the chubby side.

Fortunately, I have a wife who is also a lover of food. We are always searching on Yelp for a new place to eat for the weekend. Everyday, when we get home from work, we are always looking forward to what to eat for dinner together. If there is no food and my wife is in a bad mood, I know that she is just “hangry” and I need to find some food fast for her.

Reflecting on food, I realize just how important of a role it has played in my life with my family and friends. The most amount of time hanging out and talking with my family or friends is around a meal together. Everyday growing up, I was fortunate enough to be surrounded by family during most dinners, and we would be able to talk and discuss about what was going on in our daily lives. Any time that I would hang out with a friend, it was always at a restaurant of some sort, where we can talk and laugh, as we caught up on life together. So even though I love how delicious food can be, it has so much more of a bigger impact than just providing nutrition and fueling my body. It provides a way to grow closer with family and friends.

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