Health is not only about diet and exercise. You can have a perfect diet and exercise daily, but if you have a stressful job or are in a relationship that doesn’t fulfill you, you won’t reach your health and wellness potential.


Do you know what it’s like to be passionately in love? Everything is so exciting that you forget about food.


Happy couple, in love


Or have you been deeply involved in an exciting work project where you didn’t even feel the need to eat?


Happy woman working on a project


Or when you were a kid playing outside with your friends, and your parents would have to call you to eat because you’d forgotten completely about food. 


Kids playing


On the other hand, when you feel sad, depressed, the first thing you do when you get home is open the fridge to see if you have any comfort food.


When what you really want is a hug and a kiss. 


When I studied at The Institute of Integrative Nutrition, I learned about the concept of primary food. This is one of the most important and useful things I could ever pass onto my clients and readers. 


Since our wellbeing is determined by so much more than diet, it’s important to take those factors into account when pursuing a healthy lifestyle.


We call this primary food. 


Primary food is everything that nourishes us off the plate. The most important primary foods are: 

  • career
  • relationships
  • exercise 
  • spirituality 


Image representing top 4 primary foods: career, relationships, exercise, spirituality


Other primary foods are: 

  • creativity
  • finances 
  • education
  • health
  • home cooking 
  • home environment 
  • social life 
  • joy 


When we are more satisfied with our life, we feel more satisfied with food. Often, when we feel empty and unloved, we try to fill that void with food—which doesn’t make us feel better and can badly affect our health.


Primary food plays an equal if not greater role in improving your overall health and wellness than what’s on your plate.


We’re not just hungry for and nourished by food; we need love, movement, stability, adventure, a higher purpose, as well as self-expression in our lives to thrive. 


Two people standing on the top of a mountain


If you think you have a food problem, consider whether it’s actually a lifestyle problem, a career problem, a relationship problem, or something else.


By fixing one of these 12 areas, automatically we balance our plate and find more balance in our life.


This leads to us making healthier choices because we are calmer, fulfilled, and more in love with our life.


The more primary food we receive, the less we depend on secondary food.


The opposite is true also: the more unbalanced our primary food is, the more we depend on secondary foods, the food we actually eat, to fill that void. 


What’s more is that the more we depend on secondary food to feel fulfilled, the less we’re able to receive primary food. In other words, depending on food alone to feel good can lead to problems in other areas of your life, especially if you’re ignoring problems that need your attention.


I would like to invite you to pause for a moment today and to reflect on your life. Check within yourself and ask yourself what primary food you are missing in your life. 


Start by thinking about the most important four: career, relationships, exercise, and spirituality.


Check if these are in balance with your goals and your needs and see if you notice a relationship with your food choices.


Do you eat when you are at your desk when you are bored?


Do you eat more sweets at night because you’re unhappy within your relationship?


Share with me your thoughts, comment below, and feel free to contact me. I really want to hear from you.


Remember that everything we consider nutrition is really just a secondary source of energy. 


Need personalised guidance and support? Check out my One to One Nutrition Coaching programme