10/24/2011 02:13 EDT | Updated 12/24/2011 05:12 EST

Are You Settling?

The other day, I couldn't help but stop dead in my tracks when I noticed the November 2011 issue of The Atlantic which read, What, me marry? It was a bit of a relief when back in 2008, Atlantic had published the polar opposite when writer Lori Gottlieb suggested that we should settle even if the suitor is slightly hideous. So you'll understand my relief when I saw the opposite in print. Now this isn't to say that we shouldn't marry, but rather there is a growing amount of women who are becoming more empowered than ever.

However where I still see women falling short is in the kitchen where many of my patients have expressed their struggles with cooking for one. Which begs the question, how do we have a growing group of strong-minded, confident women who are happy to be single but struggle and settle in the kitchen?

Maybe it's time. Somehow we have less of it, juggling more and a million more ways for people to contact us and a career to climb. By the time we get to the kitchen, it's either a nuke in the microwave or takeout. Settling in the kitchen with processed foods is no different than succumbing to a bad boyfriend: plenty of claims with little follow through. What many fail to realize is food has a major role in our energy to stay on top in our physical lives and provide us with emotional stability and it begins with something called, Qi.

According to Chinese Medicine there are several types of Qi (a.k.a vital energy). Whole foods allow us to manufacture a type of Qi known as Gu Qi (pronounced: goo-chi). When we consume fried foods, it impairs the transportation, process and creation of other types of Qi in the body (e.g. Zong Qi manufactured by the lungs allows for the energy needed for proper respiration). When this impairment happens, I believe it can give way to emotional factors such as anger, worry and obsession. Suddenly our Qi stagnates giving rise to sudden cravings throwing us back into a vicious cycle. This may sound foreign but this is where I build my case for the kitchen and why if you dare to settle in the kitchen, you settling on you.

How do we change this? Begin in steps and avoid complete deprivation because we all like to cheat every now and then. Where I always start to get my Qi going is in the morning when digestion is most active with a basic green smoothie. It repairs nutritional deficiencies giving us the energy to tackle our booming careers and feel level-headed. Not to mention, they take under five minutes to make.

So with a growing comfort of being single (for now) and not settling for Mr. Wrong, let's avoid settling in the kitchen because our relationship with food is a direct reflection of the relationship we have with ourselves. Which is when we can confidently say we refuse to settle for any bad apples in our lives and that life is about to get a little sweeter.

For more on Melissa Ramos, please visit: Sexy Food Therapy.