Savatthi the Blessed Buddha once explained:
Just as this body, is sustained by food, is dependent on food, and
continue without food, even so, friends, are the five mental
indeed also sustained by a kind of food, they are also dependent on
and cannot continue without ever renewed feeding!
And what, friends, is feeding for the arising and growth of
It is frequent and careless attention to the alluring & attractive
This food makes sensual lust arise and feeds also growth of habitual
And what, friends, is feeding for the arising and aggravation of
It is frequent & careless attention to the displeasing & repulsive
This food makes aversion arise and boosts also any habitual anger…
And what feeds the emergence & deterioration of
It is frequent & careless attention to drowsiness, & too much eaten
This is food makes sloth arise and feeds also worsening of habitual
And what feeds the arising and escalation of
It is frequent & careless attention to the excited, agitated &
This food upsets & stirs the mind & intensifies also habitual anxiety
And what feeds the arising, deepening & expansion of
It is frequent & careless attention to doubtful theories & speculative
This food bewilders the mind & feeds also escalation of habitual
Just as this body is supported by food, is dependent on food, and
go on without food, exactly so, friends, are these
5 Mental Hindrances
supported by feeding, dependent on feeding, and cannot persist without
this continual mental feeding by wrongly directed attention…
these 5 Mental Hindrances (Nīvaranas):
Though not visible these 5 Hindrances effectively Obstruct beings!
Source (edited extract):
The Grouped Sayings of the Buddha.
Book [V:64-5] section 46: The Links. 2: The Body...
What Feeds the Hindrances?