There’s a big difference between nutrition and entertainment. Food is nourishing. It’s what we’re eating when we choose stuff that’s loaded with color and fiber, such as vegetables and beans, nuts, fruits, seeds, and whole grains. Fun, on the other hand, is nothing like food. Fun items (which we tend to call by interesting names like “junk food” or “fast food”) are made with products like white flour, white rice, corn syrup, corn starch, commodity oils (soy, corn, cottonseed) and, of course, sugar, which you find in practically everything that’s ultraprocessed.
There’s a reason you can eat a big bag of sour patch kids at the movies, and then go out for dinner afterward. Your brain knows it wasn’t nourished, and it’s still hungry!
I’m not saying you can never eat sweets, or anything from a conventional vending machine, or chips or cookies or froot loops or that kind of stuff. I’m just saying they do not nourish you. They entertain you. Fun is fine, but it’s not food.
There’s a place for entertainment in our diets, and it’s perfectly reasonable to eat treats now and then, as long as you make time to take walks and your blood sugars stay normal. But first make sure that you’re nourishing yourself. A major problem with the standard American diet is that we eat a whole bunch of stuff that actually entertains us, all under the mistaken impression that we are being nourished. Which is one reason why some people stay hungry all the time, and can’t figure out why.
Whenever you eat something that sticks to your ribs, and keeps you satisfied for a good long while, there’s a pretty good chance it was nourishing. But if you find yourself famished just an hour or two after you eat, it was probably entertainment. Trust your gut, and remember: fun is fine, but it’s not food.