Humans use food differently in an intricate way. It is in this respect that eating and feeding are two distinguished features. However, the nature of #food has entirely changed. The primitive Man used to hunt or gather food—animals would better be described as food for Him— as an end means to survive under circumstances so replete with danger and hardship. But after the historical and natural evolution through which He seemed to have undergone, food has till now been cultivated in ways so excessive that its practices become significantly sophisticated. These practices manifest at many different levels wherein food and #Identity take place.

In what sort of aspects do humans use food?

The anthropological perspective of identity, as being the essence of this essay, is a matter of a cultural practice—food.


People tend to consume more excessively than did their predecessors. It is not just about eating or feeding as much as it is about the socially agreed-upon status wherein food becomes the symbol of their status quo. The nature of what they eat presupposes what they are. They are what they eat. The habit of eating determines their identity either as individuals or as members of a community. In this regard, the notion of food has psychological and physical features.

What do we mean by the psychological and physical features of food?

The physical feature is designated within the usual convention of eating. One needs food for survival purposes. These purposes can manifest in keeping good health or maintaining life. But it can be inferred, albeit similar, that the overall purpose behind the physical aspect is sustaining life and continuity.


Thus, this characteristic is invalid since one uses food in the same way as animals do—to survive. It seems worth- notifying that the psychological one might be suitable when cultural identity is in #Question.

The psychological facet is depicted through the ways this habit is practiced. When eating luxuriously, one gets a sense of belonging to the community of which they are part. They feel more comfortable while eating what is to be their cultural recipe. In fact, food acts as a symbolic mediator between them and their identity. In case a cross-cultural sitting is established—by changing their usual type of food, their current identity would doubtfully be triggered. They are significantly more of what they eat than of what they do not. For example, when noticing a person eating pork, one easily discovers that he/she is Orthodox Christian or Roman Catholic since it is prohibited in both Islam and Judaism.

Food pertains to the understanding of identity

Food practice is a key feature in understanding others’ identities.


It is of personal preferences. The habitual practice of food determines one’s identity albeit it is flexible. Space and time are majorly significant. They can determine—by having different recipes at different times and places—what one is and what one is not. Identity is shaped by the type of food consumed where it is not a matter of feeding but a matter of the thing eaten; one is identified by what they eat.