Are you afraid of things like walking under ladders, seeing black cats, breaking mirrors, or having dinner with vegetarians?
Consider the following advice from Grammy Award winning Stevie Wonder in his popular hit Superstition (Single Version):
“When you believe in things that you don’t understand, then you suffer. Superstition ain’t the way! No, no, no.”
Do you do things like: knock on wood to ward off trouble, cross your fingers for good luck, throw rice at weddings, or say “bless you” when someone sneezes? If so, why?
If you get nervous about Friday the 13th, you’re probably from a Western Country. But if you’re more concerned about Tuesday the 13th, you’re probably from Greece or a Spanish-speaking country. It’s all relative, and borderline ridiculous.
If you’re not familiar with celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), or lactose-intolerance, you may avoid these unfamiliar topics. Next time you eat with a diabetic, a Kosher Jew, or a vegan, don’t clam up. Instead, ask questions. Topics like “vegetarianism” can spur interesting conversations. People’s diets evolve around their cultural, financial, physical and spiritual existence. Our food becomes us, literally.
For better or worse, we get accustomed to the plants, creatures, and packaged stuff we’ve been eating year after year. Families, culture, and the media brainwash us with traditions and beliefs about what’s ok, or not ok, to eat. Our food is our daily supply of fuel that keeps us running (or perhaps dragging) through our days.
It’s no wonder that some people get nervous or avoid discussions about what someone else eats or doesn’t eat. It’s a natural, superstitious, and fearful reaction that reminds us there may come a day when our “comfort foods” are no longer comfortable, and we need to eat different foods for one reason or another.
Next time someone starts talking about what they eat or don’t eat, halt your aversion and carry on with the conversation. Who knows, you may learn something. Instead of floundering in superstition, take the time to learn more about the foods you’re putting into your own body.