The Energy of Food

Not All Calories are Created Equal

By Cyndi Dale
[Energy Work]

These days, it seems that nearly everyone struggles with food issues and concerns. How many of your clients battle clinical food disorders, such as bulimia, anorexia, overeating, obesity, and the like? Just as challenging are the all-too-common food allergies, sensitivities, and cravings, as is a plain old confusion about deciding what to eat or not eat. Are we supposed to be Paleo, vegan, vegetarian, Mediterranean, organic, or even eat at all?
A client needs professional help if they’re struggling with a life-threatening eating disorder, but most of your bodywork clients can probably benefit from nutritional or dietary input. Food can be a major source of inflammation. The wrong foods or substances can lead to—or antagonize—autoimmune dysfunctions, exhaustion, mental fog, muscular stress, and pain—the very reasons your clients seek your services.
I examine food through an energetic lens, which enables a physical but also consciousness-based analysis of food challenges and solutions. I believe you can help your clients by using the same approach. In fact, I consider energetic food issues so relevant to body care that I’m featuring the topic in this article and also my next one. (The articles stand alone but also support each other.)
Calories, the energy obtained from food, do count. But not all calories are equal. Clients contact me because they’ve tried one treatment or diet after another, and nothing has worked. Others eat “perfectly” and can’t shed a pound; in fact, many of them still bloat and gain weight. This is because food contains subtle energy, not only physical energy, and it’s the subtle energy of a food that often determines its physical and emotional effects.
As compared to physical energy, subtle energy is less measurable and predictable, but so much more powerful. Subtle energies actually organize physical matter. Hence, subtle energies determine what shows up in our body, also causing the conditions for food cravings, dislikes, issues, and reactions.

Emotions and Food

There are three basic types of subtle energies that impact our relationship with food. These are feelings, frequencies, and forces. In this article, I’ll describe these three types of subtle energies and their influence on the body, and also provide tips for assisting clients with their food issues. In my next article, I’ll explore the subtle anatomy, which regulates subtle energies, as related to specific foods and substances.
In regard to feelings, it’s well known that our relationship with food is largely based on emotions. Emotions are formed when at least one feeling and belief conjoin to produce a motivating instinct. Our own emotions are regulated by three bodily areas: the enteric nervous system, the brain, and the heart.
The enteric nervous system, located within the digestive tract, relates to and creates body-based feelings. This means the emotional experiences linked to a specific food or substance can produce digestive ease or irregularity once we’ve eaten that food. For instance, when I was growing up, I was forced to eat white bread at my grandmother’s house. I grew to hate white bread because my grandmother was mean. The tiniest bit of wheat-based bread, as long as it looks white, now triggers a moderate allergic reaction.
Can I really be allergic to white bread but not darker varieties of wheat breadstuffs? Yes, because the enteric nervous system is composed of 500 million total neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters produce hormonal, biochemical, and electromagnetic patterns and responses. In other words, it makes perfect sense that an emotionally triggering food can stimulate anything from an illness to a stomachache.

What about the brain?

In general, our brain responds to foods based on memory associations. Specifically, conclusions about a certain substance are stored in the hypothalamus, which links our cerebral cortex and limbic system. Our hypothalamus actually determines our subtle or subconscious reactions to a food. While a food might need to land in our digestive tract before our enteric system reacts, not so when the brain is involved.
For instance, I felt closest to my dad when we ate chocolate-covered cherries together. I often crave them, because my brain associates that particular candy with love. Guess what? There isn’t a chocolate-covered cherry in the world that will make me gain weight. When a positive memory is associated with a food, the hypothalamus will stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system. The food—even the thought of it—will relax us. In turn, our enteric system will cheerily metabolize the food. We’ll burn off the calories and feel great.
What if my father had shamed me while indulging in chocolate cherries? Negative correlations with a food activate the sympathetic nervous system, which is excitatory in nature. That particular food will now be harder to digest. Not only that, but the extra calories will more easily be stored as body fat, the healthy gut bacteria will diminish in count, the body will become more toxic, and the resulting stress will raise the heart rate and the body’s production of cortisol and insulin.1 Over time, the consumption of negatively charged foods can cause chronic inflammation, disease-processes, allergies, sensitivities, and autoimmune dysfunctions.
The final emotional frontier is the heart. While the heart is a physical powerhouse of electromagnetic and hormonal activity, it is also the center of the spiritual self. In general, foods perceived to reflect spiritual qualities are more life enhancing and those associated with harmful spiritual norms are more destructive. In other words, foods can carry spiritual blessings.
Consider Intentional Chocolate, a chocolate infused with good intentions by monks. A study published in 2007 showed that this chocolate increased a subject’s well-being, vigor, and energy between 67 and 1,000 percent.2 There is a reason most spiritual traditions recommend that we pray over our food.

Subtle Energies in Food

One reason the subtle energies associated with a food can create palpable reactions is that all substances reduce to frequencies of sound and light. This is true of subtle and physical energies, as well as the subtle and physical anatomies. Take sound. Every tangible and intangible substance vibrates at a unique frequency, causing all living cells to generate a distinct sound, which is usually too low or too high to hear. The tone of yeast cells, for instance, lies between a C-sharp and a D. Bone cells are lower in pitch.3
Cells, organs, and body parts also generate—and are affected by—specific frequencies of light.4 Cells giving off the same gradients of light congregate together, creating recognizable and distinct bands of energy.5 For instance, the stomach emits a certain set of frequencies, or color and sound, and the small intestine a different set.
Just as cells, body parts, and even emotions and memories pulsate at different frequencies, so do different foods. If you eat a tomato, its subtle energy will support a bodily part that matches the tomato’s frequency. Processed foods, like white flours and sugars, are considered “dead” or unhealthy because they emanate a frequency that is so weak they don’t support any particular body region. Foods that don’t match any of the body’s energetic signatures can actually be harmful or dangerous. The immune system will attack the mismatched foods, thus establishing the conditions for food sensitivities and allergies, and in turn, inflammation and erratic digestion.
While foods naturally reflect their unique frequencies, they can also carry others’ energies. If that extra subtle energy is desirable or helpful, the food will create healthy physical reactions. If these energies are perceived as harmful, they might disrupt the digestive system. There are also foods that we psychologically think should carry an extra-special boost of subtle energy. For instance, mother’s milk should contain mother’s love. If a related food, like ice cream or cheese, fails to deliver, the immune system will react.
In order to best explain that last paragraph, I need to give you a quick lesson on forces.
A force is a wave of moving energy that produces an effect. We are constantly impacted by forces, but most people don’t realize that the majority of forces are unseen, or subtle. And while your client might be seeing you to repair the effects of a physical force, such as those delivered by a fall or injury, they might inadvertently need assistance with the effects of a subtle force.
The array of subtle forces includes those that are natural, verbal, emotional, and spiritual. Common sense dictates the power of these. Think about it. How often have you been impacted by another’s unspoken thoughts, attitudes, feelings, or desires? When a subtle force affects someone in relation to a food item or substance, a food issue is born.
For instance, imagine your client’s mother was angry and resentful every time she cooked for the family. That anger was transferred, through the food, into your client at every meal. Now, every time your client eats, the stored energy of mom’s anger is agitated. No matter the diet employed by your client, every morsel of food will stimulate emotional, and therefore physical, inflammation.
Take the client who sees you for stress reduction to assist them with weight loss. They’ve even gone vegetarian, thinking that an anti-inflammatory diet will help. What if their father used to yell at them to force veggies down their throat? What began as a negative verbal force associated with vegetables can now cause your client to gain weight on a vegetarian diet.
Destructive food forces can be generated within a client’s life but also carried in their genetic material. Epigenetics is a field of study that examines the cellular trait variations caused by external and environmental factors that can essentially switch genes on or off. Said simply, we can inherit the subtle memories related to foods from our ancestors, which can lead to allergies, cravings, and inflammation. For instance, if a client’s ancestor was poisoned by a specific plant, your client might be allergic to the same plant. If the only food an ancestor could eat during a famine was potatoes, your client might crave potatoes.

Five Steps to Address Food Challenges

How can you help your client address the subtleties of these types of food issues? In my next article, I’ll help you use the subtle anatomy to analyze and solve food challenges. As for now, I’ll provide you a few practical ideas.

1. Explain about the relationship between food and inflammation. As we’ve discussed, foods that invoke negative memories can create physical problems. As you work on a specific body area, ask the client if any food-based memories arise that might be creating problems in that area. They can process the memories with you or elsewhere.
2. Ask about their diet. If a client seems willing to discuss the matter, ask about their diet. What foods do they crave? What foods do they negatively react to? See if they are willing to abstain from the craved or challenging substance and see what feelings or memories arise.
3. Assign a food log. If a client guesses there might be a relationship between their diet and their physical symptoms, request that they keep a food log. In it, they should write down what, when, and why they eat, and also record their reactions to each food. Do particular foods make them feel more or less emotionally or physically strained? All the better if the client can connect a past experience to uncomfortable reactions or excavate a memory from the family tree to figure out a food-ancestor association.
4. Encourage joy. As noted, we’re less apt to react negatively to a food we’re positive toward. If a client is going to—or already did—indulge, let them feel joy! Ask them to go so far as to bless the food too.
5. Listen to the body. After explaining the idea that, on a frequency basis, different foods support different parts of the body, encourage your client to “sense” which foods bolster which bodily functions. They might want to consider eliminating the “do-nothing” foods, for they might actually be causing harm.
Above all, help your client understand that the key to making nourishing food choices is self-love. Clients who love themselves are already so well-nourished that they will naturally select foods that sustain and enliven.


1. Marc David, “Mind Over Food,” Institute for the Psychology of Eating, accessed March 2018,
2. Megan McFeely, “Intentional Chocolate Infused with Good Intentions by Monks,” Merlian News, November 1, 2008, accessed March 2018,
3. Mark Wheeler, “Signal Discovery?,” Smithsonian magazine (March 2004), accessed March 2018,
4. MIT Technology Review, “Biophoton Communication: Can Cells Talk Using Light?,” May 22, 2012, accessed March 2018,
5. Energy Medicine Center, “Vibrational Light and Sound Therapies,” accessed March 2018,

Cyndi Dale is an internationally renowned author, speaker, and intuitive consultant. Her popular books include The Subtle Body Coloring Book: Learn Energetic Anatomy (Sounds True, 2017), Subtle Energy Techniques (Llewellyn Publications, 2017), Llewellyn’s Complete Book of Chakras (Llewellyn Publications, 2016), The Intuition Guidebook: How To Safely and Wisely Use Your Sixth Sense (Deeper Well Publishing, 2011), Energetic Boundaries: How to Stay Protected and Connected in Work, Love, and Life (Sounds True, 2011), The Subtle Body: An Encyclopedia of Your Energetic Anatomy (Sounds True, 2009), and The Complete Book of Chakra Healing (Llewellyn Publications, 2009), as well as nearly 20 additional books. To learn more about Dale and her products, services, and classes, please visit