We are all foodies, growing up and living in Singapore, you cannot escape it. Food is inherently a huge part of our culture, it forms a part of our identity. Adapting a concept from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, the food we love to ingest and partake in social gatherings is called secondary food. What then, is Primary Food?

What truly nourishes us, besides food?


Primary food, is the important areas in our life that truly nourishes and feeds our soul from the inside. I like to think of them as pillars of life, or pillars to live by:

  1. Career
  2. Relationships
  3. Physical Activity
  4. Spirituality

These 4 areas are the top main ones that affect our entire lifestyle, emotions, stress levels, decision making on a daily basis. When you set goals and intentions for the year, consider these sectors and how satisfied you are with them!

The other 8 sections stem from the top 4, including:

  1. Joy
  2. Creativity
  3. Education
  4. Finances
  5. Social Life
  6. Home Environment
  7. Health
  8. Home Cooking

How do we use this tool to help us?

Draw a circle and label the 12 sections just like in the photo above. Place a dot in each category in relation to your satisfaction. If you are happy with physical activity, your dot will be on the outer edge of the circle; otherwise it will either be in the middle or toward the centre if you are completely unhappy with it. Visually, this helps us look simply and clearly at which areas  are unbalanced. As the year goes by, and you work on achieving happiness, watch how your circle grows wider and fuller!

The Circle of Life as a tool has an amazing capability to transform our lives, as we are honest with ourselves and it gives us a zoomed in view of where we truly lack nourishment. Still uncertain? Find a health coach, who is the best at guiding you to find true balance in life through behavioural modifications, self-acceptance work and goal settings.


This article was contributed by Melissa Dorai of NourishMel.

Photo credits: Institute for Integrative Nutrition


Dean and Deluca

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