The Power of Association

Why we eat what we eat

The way we associate or connect with food is half the reason it’s so hard to stop eating unhealthy. Whether you are aware or not, your mind forms associations- or neurological-associations- with food.

Tony Robbins said, “when we do something for the first time, we create a physical connection, a thin neural strand that allows us to re-access that emotion or behavior again in the future.”

The first time we do something we either create a positive (pleasure) or negative (pain) association. As we repeat this behavior we will either develop a strong positive (pleasure) cord or a weak negative (pain) cord formed through neurological-associations.

For a majority of people, healthy food has become the bad guy, the pain part. They think that eating healthy costs more,  takes longer to prepare, and just doesn’t taste as good.

To associate pleasure with eating healthy we should think beyond the quick jolt of satisfaction that sugar gives. We should think of the unlimited power that healthy food can have on our body, mind, and spirit.

This association with food will then determine what kinds of foods we eat. When we associate bad foods to pain, we begin to have breakthroughs with eating healthy.

How Association Works

To show how association works really works, I want you to think about pizza and cake (or your favorite unhealthy meal or dessert). What do you associate with pizza and cake? Massive amounts of pleasure?

Is it nothing but good memories? When I used to think of pizza and cake, I would imagine birthday parties, sporting events, movie nights and other fun memories.

These foods are usually associated with fun, family-oriented events. More often than not, some of your greatest memories with family and friends have an association with unhealthy food. It’s amazing to me that we use some of the unhealthiest foods to celebrate our most important life events.

Connect Pleasure To Healthy Food and Pain to Unhealthy Food

Tony Robbins says it best, “the secret of success is learning to use pain and pleasure instead of having pain and pleasure use you. If you do that, your’re in control of your life. If you don’t, life controls you.”

How does one change their association with food? I want you to look at pizza and cake in a different light. Look at these foods as bad health, tiredness, bloating, inflammation, and low self esteem.

When you start to see these foods as they really are, your perspective begins to change and you’ll see massive amounts of pain instead of pleasure.

Remember, unhealthy food really has nothing for you. No nutritional value and no future value. It may not be much pain now, but it will be in the future.

Don’t let a quick jolt of pleasure stop you from eating healthy. Eating healthy isn’t just for the sick, its the prevention of sickness.

How To Change

“The only way we’re going to make a change now is if we create a sense of urgency that’s so intense we’re compelled to follow through” Tony Robbins.

At a deep level, you have to begin to associate unhealthy food to pain. I promise the unhealthy food you eat will seek revenge and cause pain in your life. Don’t be naive and slothful, waiting for a huge problem to happen in order to change.

Look around you and look at the numbers! The health of America is dropping at a rapid rate, with the main culprit being what we eat. The more you eat healthy food the more your taste buds will adjust and get use to. Remember what you eat effects not only your body, but your mind and spirit too.

To see more on the power of association and eating healthy check out my new Ebook, The Power of Food: Body, Mind, and Spirit.


About Kyle

Kyle Collinsworth is a professional basketball player, currently playing for the Dallas Mavericks of the NBA. He is a also a health coach, motivational speaker, and author or multiple books on health and fitness.

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