Ostracism In Food

1817 Words 8 Pages
Beyond its nutritional and biological function, food has another crucial purpose in human life. Food is a fundamental component in fulfilling social needs. The appropriate food can make or break business negotiations, express romance and affection on anniversaries, or simply mark the trivial, yet sentimental bimonthly coffee date had with a lifelong friend. In this context, food is symbolic of “comfort, home, and love” (Anderson 83). A tool that allows the optimization of sociability, which is ultimately, a means for survival. But what becomes of survival in the absence of social interaction? For a human, what justification exists when a meal is had alone? For the Table For One project, I decided to have dinner at a Yard House midweek in …show more content…
Eating alone would entail more food that can be rationed over a longer period of time. Thus, prolonging survival. But from a biological, mental, and social perspective eating alone, especially when under the circumstances of isolation and ostracism, can actually be quite damaging to both children and adults. In children, ostracism can lead to extreme feelings of stress and adversely effect self-esteem and mood to the point where it impairs a child’s ability to self-regulate. The child, more so in overweight children, may then engage in unhealthy, comforting behaviors, such as overeating, to cope with the negative emotions (Salvy, Bowker, Nitecki, et.al, 2010). A study in food and men who live alone had similar results. Overeating and overconsumption were not prevalent, but men who lived alone were more inclined to make unhealthy food choices (Sellaeg & Chpman, 2008). Most men in the study expressed understanding and intention of having good food habits, but failed to maintain them, attributing it to a “lack of time to cook alone” or too much time socializing “eating unhealthy foods” with their food partners though all of them identified having a female partner or a nuclear family as a reference point on healthy eating habits (Sellaeg & Chapman, 2008). This directly supports Vartanian, Herman, and Wansink’s food modeling while also bringing light to the fact that food affects the social aspects as much as the social aspects affects food. This could contribute to idea of food sharing. Much like the Murik’s, the men in the study believed that food should be shared with significant others to forge a bond between them. To ensure that their ties and relationships were strengthen by the emotions expressed in sharing

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