With all the perfect food photos you see when scrolling social media you are made to believe that that is how your food should look. It’s no longer enough with just a plate of potatoes, some broccoli and protein source, now you need a super expensive avocado, preferably an air frier so you can make fries without oil and also sweet potato instead of normal potatoe because white potato is *outdated and not as healthy* (not true at all!).
It’s no longer just a bowl of oatmeal with berries for breakfast, now you need a super expensive nut butter, edible flowers, berries which are organic and you pay half your salary for.
But it’s not just the ingredients and the food, it’s about how you plate up the food and if you can take a good photo or not.
Food perfection, another stress in some people’s lives. Wanting the perfect lighting, angles, eating cold food,buying and making food just for the photo. I’ve been there before…. instead of seeing food as calories and macros, it was about seeing food as what is photogenic, what will get likes and comments. This was how I felt back when I had 4000-6000 followers, but have moved on from that mindset and realised that food doesn’t have to be perfect. Food isn’t perfect.
All those amazing food photos, all those crazy expensive ingredients people use and different meals everyday…. that is not a normal person thing. Most people are happy that they even cook a meal and don’t order food,or that they actually make something that tastes good and not just burnt or flavourless.
When you spend alot of time on Instagram and specifically on food accounts you are made to believe that all those amazing food dishes are the normal and how your food should look as well, And that isn’t the case at all.
I don’t know how many failed dishes I’ve made. How many pancake scrambles I’ve had instead of actual pancakes. The amount of burnt potatoes I’ve had to throw away because I forgot them in the oven, or the times my food was salty AF or had way too much chilli. My food doesn’t always taste great and doesn’t always look great. Infact after I post my “ok ig photo” I add more and mix it all up.
Before I used to compare my food and my photos to others and would feel useless and like everyone else was better than me. And you know what I will never have those fabulous food dishes or the very clear and perfect food photos where there is ingredients all over the table, that’s not me… that’s now how or what I eat and I’d rather not have to do e tea cleaning or spend 60 minutes taking photos, editing and then eating cold food.
What I show is realistic food!!! My food is what I crave and want, But also it’s easy food that usually doesn’t take longer than 30-40 minutes to make. It’s food that most people can make and with the right spices can hopefully enjoy it.
*also note… I personally think my food is realistic to make. But that might not be the case at all, for some just making pasta and taomtoe sauce is an achievement and actually making lentil soup or a bunch of roasted veggies isn’t realistic at all.
But Also I’m honest about the fact that I love chocolate more than anything and eat it almost daily. I eat Oreos regularly and sometimes snack the whole day and other days I eat left overs for breakfast or just potatoes and avocado for dinner. It’s not always perfect but also even if I study nutrition I don’t always eat according to the guidelines or what is nutritionally recommended and that’s reality…. It’s not always protein, carbs and fat for a meal or timed perfectly or nutritionally dense.
I’ve given up on trying to have a perfect food account instead I’m just doing my thing and enjoying it which is the important thing. However inspiring others and the interaction with others is what I love Most! And since just doing my own thing and enjoying it I don’t feel stressed to post, I don’t validate myself with likes, I don’t spend time I don’t even have on making food I don’t even like, And instead making and eating food I want and somedays i share those meals, other days I don’t . … depends on my energy levels! It’s nice to just eat without taking a picture as well hahaha.
Also an important side note, I do have a certain theme on my IG, so no I don’t just post whatever. But also I do plate it in a certain way and mix it all together afterwards. So yes, there is some behind thought and yes I do care, I’m not completely careless about my Ig. But it doesn’t control me or define my worth or pressure me like it once did!
Of course you get alot of inspiration when looking through food accounts but remember that it’s not always realistic. Also many food accounts out ALOT of time and energy into their food and photo’s and there is nothing wrong with that, all cred to them and I wish i could do the same thing. But for many it’s their *job* to work on social media so they have the time and the money (I hope!) To make those types of dishes, which isn’t always realistic for the majority of people.
Just like instagram fitness accounts where it’s their job to workout, film workouts , And how they look is their job…. which isn’t the normal for most people…. the majority of people don’t have time to workout twice a day or full and edit all the workouts etc
It’s important to be realistic and not compare yourself or your life to anyone else.
For some they are happy that they actually cook, for others they are happy if their avocado is ripe so they can take the perfect IG photo.
My tip to you all…. choose food you want to eat not food that will generate the most likes. Don’t complicate food so much and don’t feel stressed to post, do it if you want to. You don’t have to have 101 different and expensive ingredients that you don’t even like.
Food shouldn’t be seen in calories, macros, likes, followers and food shouldn’t determine your worth. Eat food you like, focus on whole plant based foods first and foremost.
This post was inspired by Sarah @thecuttingveg on IG. You should check out her post: http://www.thecuttingvegblog.com/in-support-of-mediocre-food/ where she writes a whole lot better than me about this topic,But I felt I had to share my experience as Instagram has been something negative for me in the past and I want to hopefully inspire others to not let IG control them or make them feel bad.
If you don’t use instagram alot or don’t take food photos you might not relate to those post or experience. But I know many who follow me might relate and need to take a little time to think over their thoughts and behaviours!