This Quote From Nigella Lawson Is The Only Advice You Should Listen To This January

Nigella knows best.

Now that the dust has settled, the tinsel has been stored away for another eight months and the cheese boards have been well and truly enjoyed, it’s time for a new year and with that, like clockwork, comes messages of diets and detoxes. Just a month after advertisers were pushing for us to “indulge”, we’re now being told how to undo all of that and get restrictive about what we eat again.

These conflicting messages — indulging one month, feeling guilty the next — can give us a complicated relationship with food and the foods that we were encouraged to enjoy last month, such as chocolate, are now considered “guilty pleasures” until the next festive season.

Thankfully, the Queen of the Kitchen herself, Nigella Lawson, has previously spoken about this in her book Cook, Eat, Repeat and for us at least, this is the only food messaging we’ll accept this year.

Nigella’s thoughts on guilty pleasures

In the book, Nigella says “if I could ban any phrase, it would, without doubt, be that overused, viscerally irritating, and far-from-innocent term itself, the Guilty Pleasure.”

She goes on to say “my answer to that question is always the same, and while I worry that I repeat it so often it might be beginning to sound glib, I have to say that I feel it profoundly.

“And it is this: no one should feel guilty about what they eat, or the pleasure they get from eating; the only thing to feel guilty about (and even then I don’t recommend it) is the failure to be grateful for that pleasure.”

Finally, her take-home message is one of gratitude: “I am very aware that the joy I celebrate in food is a privilege. And for me, it’s vitally important not to belittle that, or forget it. Taking pleasure in the food we eat is an act of gratitude.”

She adds: “The world is not always rich in occasions of joy. I know I might seem soupy when I say that I see every mealtime, every mouthful, as a celebration of life, but (with lamentable exceptions) I do, or I try to. It’s such a waste otherwise.”

Amen, Queen Nigella.

This is the perfect antidote to what we’re told at this time of year. Food is not the enemy, it’s not a thing to feel guilty about. It’s a thing for celebrating and on these dreary winter days, don’t we need to feel moments of celebration?


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