What is Mindful Eating?
Mindful eating is the practice of being aware of what you are eating, how you are eating and where you are eating. It’s a technique that will help you control your eating behaviors. The practice of mindful eating has been shown to promote weight loss, improve eating habits and reduce overeating.
In a society filled with an abundance of food choices and activities based around food such as dinner parties and holidays it may be hard to practice healthy eating habits. Therefore, mindful eating will help you make healthy food choices and reduce overeating. It will also help you be more in tune with the emotional and physical factors that may be causing unhealthy eating behaviors.
Eating has become a mindless act due to the many distractions around us; televisions, computers and smartphones. This may be challenging for you to realize when your stomach is full since it takes the brain up to 20 minutes to receive those cues. Eating mindlessly also may be the result of eating out of emotions rather than actual hunger. This act can lead to chronic health conditions such as diabetes and obesity and the emotional dependence on food.
Ultimately, Mindful Eating involves your undivided attention to what’s on your plate. While practicing you should be eating with very little to no distraction. You should eat slowly and pay attention to your foods texture while savoring every bite. Be aware of physical cues such as satiety and fullness. Understand that you are eating to fuel your body and to maintain overall health and well-being.
Ask yourself these following questions before beginning/during a meal:
Why am I eating? Am I hungry?
Did I choose a well-balanced meal?
Will these food items leave me feeling guilty and anxious?
Will these food items make me feel good and satisfied?
Am I in front of a TV, computer or smartphone?
Am I paying attention to my meal rather than the distractions around me?
Am I eating slowly and thinking about each bite; it’s smell, color, taste and texture?
Am I putting my fork down in between each bite allowing myself enough time to realize when I am full?
Am I full and satisfied?
Mindful eating takes practice, try it out on one meal a day and go from there!
Check out the video below if you want to learn more!