Alexander Fufaev
My name is Alexander FufaeV and here I write about:

October 20, 2023: Essentialism. Eating with hands and tooth abrasion

October 20, 2023. I woke up at 9:30 a.m. It was raining heavily outside. Mom is on the morning shift.

Today, I stumbled upon essentialism and wondered what the difference is compared to minimalism. Essentialism means focusing on the essential and leaving out everything else. As soon as you enter the gates of essentialism, the number of thoughts per day decreases, chronic stress disappears, you do fewer things, but you do them really well and wholeheartedly.

The more I free myself from material things, the more this essential lifestyle reveals itself in my life. I would even argue: the more extreme the minimalism, the more extreme the resulting essentialism, and the more pronounced the benefits of essentialism.

I made myself four toasts with spreads, one with jam. Along with that, a green apple, a banana, and spelt coffee. I sat down at the table and ate. I didn't hear or see anything, although I would have liked to watch a YouTube video or listen to a podcast on the side. But no, I just ate.

I tried to focus on the food, but then a thought crossed my mind that made me forget the here and now: a minimalist way of giving gifts for Christmas. What could I wish for from Mom and others for Christmas? What experiment, as my gift from her to her, should I think up for Mom? 30 days without coffee or sweets? Or rather 20 days of tidying up everything? Or perhaps 30 days of meditating every day? Or maybe making an income-expense table and cutting out all expenses that are not necessary? What would help her the most psychologically and health-wise? And what do I wish for from the others, Dascha, Tobi, Laura?

During the meal, the idea came to me: What if I not only eat toast by hand? What if I also eat many other foods by hand? The sensual experience of touching food with hands, feeling its texture, experiencing its temperature. That would be something, wouldn't it?

After eating, I researched more about it:

  1. Eating with hands also helps us pay more attention to what we eat, how much we eat, and how quickly we eat. These are important factors for a healthy digestion.
  2. The blood circulation in the hands improves.
  3. Digestion is better stimulated.
  4. Eating with hands makes the texture, taste, and aroma of food more conscious.
  5. When we eat with hands, we come into contact with useful bacteria that are on our skin, in our mouth, and in our intestines. This improves protection against harmful pathogens and infections.
  6. Hands can also serve as temperature sensors. Someone eating with a fork might not even notice how hot the food is.

Despite the benefits, it was initially too unfamiliar for me to eat everything without a fork and spoon. When I finished, I felt full. If I had been watching a show that wasn't over yet, I would have eaten until the show ended, not until I was full. I'm proud that I've learned to listen more to my body and not to external factors like the duration of a video.

When I wanted to brush my teeth, I felt my front teeth with my tongue beforehand. They were completely smooth. Then I brushed my teeth with the toothbrush (of course without toothpaste) and pressed very lightly. The front teeth still remained smooth. Then I pressed a little harder. Suddenly they felt much rougher. Apparently, the mechanical abrasion has a strong effect on the teeth. I have to brush more carefully.

Then I took a closer look at my front teeth in the mirror and wondered why the edges between the tooth and the gum are slightly yellowish compared to the rest of the tooth, and why there is a slightly visible notch at the boundary between gum and tooth. I researched and found out that abrasion by the toothbrush could be a possible cause. Excessive mechanical abrasion can also lead to teeth becoming overly sensitive to hot and cold temperatures and the gums receding.

I will now pay much more attention to not pressing the toothbrush too hard against the teeth. But I also considered completely abandoning the toothbrush and only using dental floss. I googled experiences to see if anyone had tried to leave out the toothbrush for a longer period. But I found nothing except articles that scared me about what could happen if I left out the toothbrush.

Learning: I should pay attention to brushing my teeth more gently.