Cravings and aversions

This is the food I really, really can’t stand:

  • Chinese eggs cooked in tea (to be found in every 7-Eleven in Taiwan — their smell is perfectly nauseating)
  • rice — even the plainest, simplest and whitest kind
  • milk shakes
  • anything spicy — including Thai and Indian food
  • soy milk
  • noodle soup
  • intestines, pork hearts, chicken legs, duck necks (yes, the Chinese love it; it makes me wretch)

IKEA meatballsThis is the food I crave:

  • sausages — preferably fried
  • potatoes — preferably mashed
  • brown sauce — on everything, all the time
  • cheese
  • bread — soft, white, newly baked
  • macaroni, pasta, spaghetti

Strange, isn’t it? These lists say nothing at all about my normal preferences.  I very happily drank frothy milkshakes only last week and I haven’t had a sausage since we moved from London. The simplest answer may be that my treatment makes me like more plain food.  But that can’t be true since rice is included with the aversions.  What could be plainer than rice?

What seems to have happened is that I’ve reverted back to my Swedish childhood.  What I like to eat is the food my mother served me as a kid.  Conversely, what I can’t stand is everything I’ve eaten since about age 14 — all those exotic, “tastes-just-like-chicken,” dishes.

But why?  Maybe it’s a matter of comfort.  I feel more comforted by the first flavors I ever experienced.  But, if so, where did this memory suddenly come from?  And how did the chemotherapy come to interact with my memories in such a way that I suddenly wanted to eat this childish stuff? Someone should do research on this topic.


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