The purpose of eating a meager diet is not to destroy the natural enjoyment that one has for food, but to moderate it according to reason.
It is impossible to destroy the delight one experiences from food nor is thus desirable, but it is possible to develop an unhealthy attachment to more pleasurable foods.
It is good to keep one’s diet as bland as possible parts of the day and for seasons of the year as well as to prepare more delectable food for celebrations.
When delectable foods are taken to excess, they soften the will and reinforce a selfish mindset. In contrast, a strict plant based diet (or other suitable restrictions) tame the lower passions when used in moderation.
Excessive attachment to large amounts of sugar and salt and other strong flavors weakens the will. The periodic denial of these delights can be a kind of fast.
There is a certain interconnectedness between physical, psychological, and spiritual health. While changes in diet alone do not suffice to build virtue, they can greatly assist one’s interior life.
The man who is in love with food will never attain contemplation. Likewise, the man who is impervious to pleasure cannot receive spiritual delights. Spiritual delights do not destroy the lower self, but fulfill it.