Fall is here! With the fall season comes so many things to do and get done! Between juggling school events, work functions, social events, and getting ready for the upcoming holidays, we can often find ourselves rushing through each day to get all of these things done. This includes meal time. Have you ever been so busy multitasking at meal time that you suddenly realize you’ve eaten it all and didn’t really taste or enjoy your food? Did you maybe eat more than you meant to because your attention was somewhere else? Maybe your meal was just something that you “needed’ to do so that you could get back to finishing your to-do list. In these situations, although we are thinking about our food in some way, we aren’t being mindful of it. So, what does it mean to be mindful and practice mindful eating?
Mindful eating means that when we’re ready to eat, we calm the rush of our everyday lives and completely focus and become aware of the full experience of our food. We use all of our senses to experience the meal and we think about how the food makes us feel while we eat it and after we eat it. We shy away from judging ourselves for choosing that food and simply take in the experience of consuming it. It’s important with mindful eating that you enjoy what you eat. Try not to think about the amount of the food or whether the food is considered a “bad” food or a “good” food. If you desire to eat a certain food, listen to your body and choose that food. You may wish to eat a certain food one day but then wish to eat something different the next day. This is perfectly okay!
Mindful eating also means that we’re thinking about more than just the experience of our food but also how we eat our food. How quickly do you eat? Are you in a hurry when you eat? Do you often find that you continue to eat because you’re enjoying the flavor of your food but then you suddenly feel extremely full and realize that you ate too much? It’s important that we are mindful of how quickly we eat. Our stomachs need time to talk to our brains to tell them that we’re full. If we eat too quickly, we often times will eat past the amount of food needed to feel full because we didn’t allow our stomach time to process the incoming food and tell our brains that we’ve had enough. In a fast-paced society where we have growing demands on our time, this is an important issue. We’re rushing to get to the next task and are multitasking and not focusing on what we’re doing and in doing so, we overeat. As a result, this can lead to weight gain and other health issues. So, now that we know a little more about mindful eating, what are some things we can do to be more mindful of our eating?
- Take time to savor each bite that you take
- Ask yourself after eating, “How do I feel now?”
- Pause between bites and eat at a relaxed pace
- Set your phone, work, and projects aside during meals
- Ask yourself what you’d like to eat and choose that food
- Try not to feel guilty about eating foods that you enjoy
- Appreciate all of the details of your food (taste, smell, etc.)
Want to learn more and incorporate this way of eating into your lifestyle? I would love to help you on your journey to improving your health and wellness! CLICK HERE to set up a free 30-minute clarity call with me today!
This content and other content provided by Health Conscious Solutions, LLC is created for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read or any content emailed from Health Conscious Solutions, LLC.
Smith, M, (2014). Mindful Eating: Freedom from Dieting.
By Jennifer Garibaldi