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A philosophy of food started a very long time ago. We are what we eat is an old saying that can be found in many different cultures and philosophies, and it still can be applied to modern society. Hippocrates once said: Let your food be your medicine. This saying is fair enough because different food has different nutritional value, and proper diets help with a big variety of disorders and illnesses (Korthals, 2004).
Food is much more than satisfying hunger, even though satisfying hunger remains the main purpose of the food intake. There is a psychological meaning of it. Different emotions, depression, exhaustion, hormones, boredom, various events, and some other factors can reproduce the false sense of hunger. For example, chocolate is well known for its hormone of happiness; liver and peanuts are rich in vitamin PP, which lack can cause depression.
Nowadays, unfortunately, life became so fast and so busy that people often do not have time to cook and think about what they eat. Although fast food restaurants and takeaway places became a symbol of the modern society, personal tastes and preferences are still considered.
According to the professor at the University of Manitoba – Paul Fieldhouse, food is one of the ways to express personal character. Peoples attitude towards food, what they crave, like and dislike, and eating habits can reveal who they really are (Van Buuren, n.d.).
There are some main types of different eating personalities. Each of them describes certain qualities of a character according to the food tastes and preferences.
The first type is The Earth Child (Van Buuren, n.d.). There are two kinds of it. People who belong to the first kind have their fridges filled with all sorts of earthly food, such as organic fruits and vegetables, different juices and sauces. The majority of them are vegetarian. They are usually gentle, sensitive people who wear natural fabric, comfortable shoes, and often grow own herbs. On the other hand, people who belong to the second kind of The Earth Child are different. All food in their refrigerators is wisely and scientifically chosen. They divide food on good and bad. Their behavior is often rigid. They are often strong-minded in their opinion, artistic, and emotional type of people.
People who fill their fridges with lots of meat belong to the second type, so-called The Wolf. They are usually aggressive, unsteady, macho, and often workaholics. These qualities of character come from prehistorical time when men had to hunt; and the more meat a man could get, the stronger he was(Van Buuren, n.d.).
The third type is The Bottom Feeder. People who belong to this type are usually overweight because they often eat without thinking a lot of junk food if they are bored or if they need comfort. They always have a lot of snacks and sweets in their fridges and cupboards. Such people, as a rule, got used to some convenience. They are often overpowered by life problems, often in a rush. Many people of this type are quite creative and have sensitive nature (Van Buuren, n.d.).
Another type of people is The Country Mouse. They are quite similar to the previous type, but instead of junk food, they prefer homemade food, such as puddings, pancakes with jam, macaroni and cheese, and so on. Just like The Bottom Feeders, they also look for comfort from food. They suffer from the stress of a modern life, and they find comfort in cooking (Van Buuren, n.d.).
The next type is so-called Polly Put-the-Kettle-On. People who like to have friends around the table, caring about the others more than about themselves, belong to this type. They keep traditions of cuisine and find happiness in cooking for people. Their refrigerators are full of home-cooked food (Van Buuren, n.d.).
The sixth type is Lady Chatterley. Such people pay attention to what they eat. They are open and eager to experiment and explore, adventurous, outgoing, and passionate. They do not mind taking a risk. There is a big variety of healthy foods in their fridges, which provide balance in their diet and add spice to their lives (Van Buuren, n.d.).
According to Canadian Living magazine, another type of people is The Referee. They eat to live. Their fridges are, like their lives, always orderly organized and filled with low-fat and high in fiber food. They would not eat anything deep fried because it has too many calories. They would drink, if they drink at all, something like a light beer. Such people are not fun at a party. Usually, such people have technical mindset and are not patient. They are closed type of people and often have problems dealing with emotions.
People who are afraid to try something new belong to the type of people that is called Simple Simon. They prefer to have the same food every day because it gives them a sense of safety in modern, fast-changing life. In everyday life, they are often anxious and overwhelmed by the world, but do not mind to risk sometimes, as long as something remains unchanged (Van Buuren, n.d.).
Using as an example my family, which is a Korean couple living in Alaska, it is possible to determine some character qualities.Of course, the first thing that is noticeable in our fridge is Korean traditional dish Kimchi, which is spicy enough. There is some rice, which is also traditional for our ethnic group, some pork, a lot of different vegetables, fruits, and some beer. A big effect on what we eat have thetraditions of our culture, which were passed on through generations. Judging by our food taste, it is possible to say that most likely, we belong to the sixth type of people, which is Lady Chatterley, even though our traditional food, besides the taste we got used to, gives us a sense of stability and comfort in the foreign country. We are quite eccentric people and do not mind having some fun and adventure despite the fact that we live by certain rules and traditions.
It is difficult to clearly classify people of modern days into these categories because many people do not eat what they prefer, but what they can afford. Nevertheless, people who are mindless of their health and eat without thinking have no respect for themselves.