(This post is sponsored by Daiya* all thoughts and opinions are my own)
Food is Fuel BUT it's so much more
When we are caught up in Diet/Wellness Culture or struggling with our relationship with food, we often have a sense of shame around eating foods simply because they taste good. We can easily fall into the limited thought pattern of "food is fuel." Which is why we feel shame or guilt for eating foods that aren't nutrient dense or "healthy." Or for eating when we're not hungry.
And yes, food is fuel, it's a biological necessity, but if it was just for fuel why would our biology be designed to make food pleasurable, too? It tastes good and feels good to eat.
It's a rewarding experience.
We release dopamine and feel-good chemicals when we eat so it's designed to be something to bring us joy and enrich our lives. It's why we turn to food when we feel sad or stressed - our biology literally feels better on a chemical level when we eat.
So allowing ourselves to enjoy food, for nourishment but also just because, is essential to a healthy relationship with food. It's what I refer to as Vitamin-P (or pleasure) and it is an essential component or "nutrient" to thriving and enjoying life.
You might be wondering why nature would do this, why would our creator make humans enjoy food and eating so much? What is the biological necessity for that?
If we look at it from an Evolutionary Biological standpoint it actually makes a load of sense.
Think back to early humans.
Think back to what life would have been like before industrial farming and our modern food system. Getting enough food to survive was a laborious task. Farming, pilling, planting, harvesting- all of it. We used to have to chase our food down with spears, or go out in the freezing winter to ice fish.
It was hard, challenging and anything but easy.
We didn't have pre-cut veggies or Grub-Hub.
So how did nature guarantee we'd go through the incredible work and danger to make sure we would keep eating to stay alive?
It made it enjoyable, it made it pleasurable, it made it taste good and feel good. Duh.
Research even shows that when we enjoy our food our nutrient absorption is better. I mean could nature be more brilliant?!? It's meant to be pleasurable, and eating for pleasure and enjoying our food is good for our health and well-being.
It's the same reason why sex feels good. It's designed to, so we reproduce and keep our species alive.
Plus, delicious food provides emotional nourishment, like cake on birthdays or champagne at a wedding- that is not physical nourishment, it's emotional. And its important because that food is a part of celebration, community and love- things that are important for us humans.
So I get that some people might look at this pizza recipe, with the white flour crust, oil based vegan butter and the processed vegan cheese and think it's unhealthy because it's not a plate of veggies, or real whole foods, but I would disagree- because it is SO HIGH IN VITAMIN-P.
Eating this pizza brings me joy. It taste so so good. Literally it makes me happy, and happiness is part of a healthy long life.
This pizza is good for my longevity!
Take that Clean Eating!!!
And since dairy cheese upsets my stomach I choose Daiya because it is the best vegan cheese alternative I have ever had. It melts and it stretches and it taste good!
PLUS it is DIVINE on this pizza. The spicy buffalo jackfruit with the melty cheese, creamy ranch dressing crunchy celery, and the bright green onion and cilantro ties it together. Seriously I am not kidding it is so so good.
Make it, eat it, enjoy it.
IT'S GOOD FOR YOUR HEALTH!
Prep/Cook Time 45 minutes
1 tbsp coconut oil
1/2 cup diced onion
1-20oz can of jackfruit in brine, rinsed and drained, then cut into bite-sized pieces
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion salt
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup vegetable broth
1/2 cup hot sauce of choice
1/2 cup melted butter of choice
2-10 inch pizza crust, store-bought
Diaya Mozzarella cheese shreds
1/4 cup sliced red onion
4 tbsp Diaya ranch dressing
1/4 cup diced celery
1/4 cup sliced green onion
1/4 chopped cilantro
Pre-heat the over to 425f
In an oven safe skillet, melt the coconut oil over medium heat. Once hot add in the onions and cook for 3-5 minutes. Add the jackfruit, garlic powder, onion salt and garlic cloves. Mix to combine well and season generously with pink salt and pepper. Then add the vegetable broth. Cover with a lid and turn up to high and bring to a boil. Then lower to a high simmer for 12-15 minutes. There should still be some liquid left. Remove the lid and stir constantly until all the broth as evaporated. Then transfer the skillet to the oven for another 10 minutes or so while you prep the remaining ingredients.
Start by melting the butter of choice in a sauce pan on the stove or in the microwave. Then remove, let cool for about a minute and then add in the hot sauce. Using a whisk, combine the butter and hot sauce to form the buffalo sauce.
Pull out the jackfruit from the oven and coat it with 1/3 of the sauce.
Then prepare the pizza crust as directed by the package. Change the oven temp if you need to.
Then divide up the buffalo sauce and cover it on the two pizza crusts, leaving a little left over to drizzle on top once cooked. Add generous handfuls of Daiya shredded cheese on top, the red onion and then the jackfruit. Cook according to the package instructions.
Before serving top with the celery, green onions, cilantro and ranch dressing. top with whatever is left of the buffalo sauce. Serve immediately and enjoy every bite! YUMMM
Binge Eating Recovery Resources
To learn more about the non-diet approach to healing your relationship with food, check out my free video training series HERE.