These words of mine may guide you into a better mood for food. In this food trance your mind will be focussed on food. Perhaps, you think, it often is. But this will be in a different way. A more wholesome way. There will be one key phrase running through it. Just three simple words to guide your feelings onto a better path. One simple phrase which is at the heart of healthy eating.

The phrase is Quality or Quantity.

Let your mind drift into a daydream. You are in a slum region. People are poor. Food is in short supply. Yet people are often fat. If you look into their hearts you find that they have been driven so hard to get food that ANY food will do and the MORE of it they get the better. When a pound does not go far it makes sense to get a lot of calories for your pound. And the pounds go on.

Now you are drifting into an aristocratic dining room. The diners have been rich for generations. They have never known poverty. They have never needed to hoard every scrap. They have never needed to count the cost of food. There is plenty of food on the table. There is very varied food. It is top quality and prepared by an expensive chef. And yet the eaters are not mounding the food on their plates. They are enjoying each mouthful. A little caviar. A slice of truffle. They are savouring and not wolfing the food. And most of them are slim and fit. And the cut of their clothes says, "Quality".

In the real world there are exceptions to every rule. But in the world of feelings there is a deep truth in these pictures. If you delight in quantity in food then your body follows your lead and goes for quantity too: quantity of fat. If you delight in quality in food then your body again follows and goes for quality in appearance and in health.

In this food mood trance let your mind dwell on food. But let it drift to and fro between the two moods. Let it see and feel the two alternatives clearly. In a deep Quantity mood you are a slob. You buy for bulk and instant calories. You cook, if at all, carelessly and fast. Why try when the food is poor? You eat in haste because it does not taste of much. Your body is heavy. Your clothes are large. In everything there is extreme Quantity and zero Quality.

Now shift to the deep Quality mood. You shop with a nose for fresh, with an eye for quality. You take time cooking to do justice to the quality of the food. You eat with a tongue for taste and a nose for fine and lasting flavours. You wear good quality clothes. They look good, they fit well and they feel good. Your body, like the food from which it is made, feels healthy and of high quality.

In quantity mood your wardrobe is filled with a lot of clothes. But clothes you will never much want to wear. In quality mood you have only a small number of outfits, but they all make you feel good. In quantity mood your freezer and shelves are stacked with food. Cheap food. Often past its sell-by date. Filling the place to overflowing. In quality mood the freezer is not bulging either. Everything in it is quite fresh. You don't store leftovers. You buy fresh and flavoursome.

Now you have seen the two extremes. You have felt the moods. You have tried them on for size. But I am not forcing you to the extremes. Most extremes are uncomfortable. The real secret is to find the place where YOU are comfortable between the extremes. So for a while just ask yourself "Quality or Quantity?" When you are buying clothes do you want to move towards Quality or Quantity? When you are shopping for food would you feel better moving towards Quality or Quantity? When you are serving a meal would you like to move a little more towards Quality or towards Quantity? When you are thinking of a snack will you lean more towards Quality or Quantity? When you think of your friendships, would it be better for you to focus more on Quality or Quantity? When you take a drink will you feel more yourself going for the Quantity or the Quality? Scores of times a day, hundreds of times a week, you make decisions and each time the gentle question, "Shall I move towards Quality or Quantity" will help you to be more and more the person YOU are happy with.