Ending my love affair with food

I struggled to lose the same 30 pounds on and off for 20 years. This was hard because food was at the heart of everything I did. My love affair with eating started when I was a child. Years later I became an executive chef, and turned it into a full-time profession. I pursued food like it was my job, both on and off the clock.

You could find me planning menus, procuring the best ingredients, or whipping egg whites into submission for a souffle at work. At home I was researching restaurants to go to with my family on vacation. On my days off I sampled chocolate chip cookies at a new bakery, or spent hours in the wine store comparing notes on different varietals.

Thoughts and images of food swirled in my head, like a constant feed of tempting suggestions to eat. Food was the focal point that defined my life. When I invited someone to dinner, they eagerly anticipated what I would cook. Friends texted me pictures of meals they just knew I would love. And my husband always introduced me to his business colleagues as “the chef”.

When I turned forty, my obsession with food started to feel like a curse. A weight I lugged around physically and mentally. I felt sluggish and distracted, overweight and unable to sleep through the night. Most afternoons I was ready for a nap after lunch.