Enneagram Eating One

The Balance of Pleasure

Relax. Eating for nourishment and pleasure and social lubrication has been around a long time. Your mother did it and she is usually a better authority than the laboratory technicians who publish learned studies on nutrition.

As a Style One, you may enjoy a certain discipline in the service of eating "right." If you do, you can profitably exercise a suspicion of the latest definition of right. Every year, the food industry spends 32 billion dollars advertising the usual old products and 17,000 new ones this year. They all have medical nutritional claims that assure you their food is "right." Right.

Contemporary science is deliberately reductionist. Reductionist means that they study only one variable at a time. You can't get published unless you do that. If you study asparagus for vitamin C, you ignore every other element of asparagus. As a One, you will like to read about nutrition and take it seriously, so you will find a lot of information that focuses on one and only one element. "Eat this food because it has antioxidants." "Avoid this food because it has too much estrogen."

So if you read all/some/much information on nutrition, you will probably find your list of "right" foods growing short. You have a learned tendency to divide foods into "good foods" and "bad foods." Let yourself expand and incorporate pleasure. One definition of right is if we like it. We have taste buds to both survive and flourish. Trust them.

You could profitably read the relaxed and urbane treatment of nutrition by Michael Pollan, In Defense of Food. He looks at the ocean of conflicting claims and after doing marvelous research decides he can sum it all up like this: Eat only food. Not too much. Mostly plants.

That's especially good advice for Ones, because you may have a certain suspicion of just eating what you like. You may not trust your body and even be suspicious of pleasure. So if you will only eat food (food is what your grandmother would recognize in the store or farmer's market), mostly plants, not too much (and unless you have bad rules about eating everything on your plate, even when a restaurant gluts you) you'll make nice progress.