All this isolation helps us reflect and respect the need for real human interaction. It is hard to think of a better place to commune for healing human interaction than the kitchen table.
Meals shared with loved ones create a place to nourish our bodies as well as our souls. Everyone has a voice at the kitchen table. It is a communion for your tribe, whoever that may be.
A family sitting down to the evening meal together creates a space for everyone to share their day, improving communication and connection within that family unit. Having those ritualistic tribal connections you can rely on daily roots our souls, bringing us support, safety and an anchor. Many of us do not take the time, or do not have the opportunity, to eat with others. We eat alone, on the run or within our homes while doing other tasks.
Many of us have lost sight of the importance in sharing a meal — for ourselves and our loved ones. Perhaps COVID-19 will give us a space to reprioritize this important nourishing point within our daily routine.
Creating a social network that supports healthy eating habits, connection and true nourishment is what Blue Zones have, in which populations live longer, healthier lives. In these cultures, sharing meals is consistently prioritized. If you are not familiar with the Blue Zones, it is five identified areas around the world that have the longest, healthiest life spans. These areas set an example that we can follow to improve our own life experience. In fact, cities can sign up for the Blue Zone project to improve the health and well-being of their citizens. Fort Worth, Texas, and Spencer, Iowa, are two Blue Zone project areas.
Food that is shared can be a powerful, nourishing and healing experience, separate from the actual nutrition qualities of the food. Of course, it is always best to try to choose food that loves your body back in a healthy manner, but just as important is taking time to share meals with those you love.
If you know someone who is not able to share meals with loved ones or a "tribe," such as someone in a nursing home or someone isolated at home, try to share a meal with them, if you can safely, in this pandemic. If you cannot, perhaps you can make their favorite dish or meal and deliver it to them.