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8 steps to mindful eating

Mindful eating

Mindful eating is a simple yet powerful technique that can help you gain control over your eating habits. This meditative practice has a number of health benefits including improved digestion, weight loss, reduced binge eating, and increased awareness of any food-related behaviors.

Mindful eating comes from the Buddhist concept of mindfulness that involves focusing on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting your feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations.

Following these mindful eating steps will help you develop awareness around your experiences, physical cues, and emotions about food. Start by introducing one or two steps until they become second nature, then introduce more steps.

1. Chew your food thoroughly. Chew your food until you can taste the essence of the food. This means chewing each mouthful 20-30 times, depending on the food.

2. Take small bites. It’s easier to taste food completely when your mouth isn’t full. Place your cutlery down in between mouthfuls while chewing.

3. Eat slowly. If you eat too fast, the fullness signal may not arrive until you have already eaten too much. This is very common with binge eating.

4. Eat without distraction or stress. Eating while doing other tasks like working, watching TV, driving, reading, or playing on your smartphone leads to mindless eating, poor digestion, and possibly overeating. Eat at the table, seated comfortably with minimal distractions.

5. Appreciate your food. Focus on the colors, aromas, sounds, textures, and flavors of your food and your surroundings and silently express gratitude. Preparing food, seeing and smelling food before eating, inspires appetite, and prepares your digestion system to receive nutrition.

6. Eat for your health. Eat a wide variety of healthy whole foods, fresh fruit, and vegetables, ensure you have sufficient protein and good fats, and avoid processed foods.

7. Listen to your body
and learn to understand the physical signs around hunger and satiety. It is important to only eat when you are hungry, don’t overeat, and stop eating when you are full, or even just before.

8. Identify emotional eating. Pay attention to eating patterns, especially snacking or binge eating. Consider when these behaviors occur and why. Sometimes identifying the link can be enough to help you overcome these habits. If you continue to struggle with your emotional connection with food, seeking help from a psychologist or cognitive behavioral therapist can help you break these habits and get your health back on track.

Mindful eating is a powerful tool to help you regain control of your eating, boost your nutrition, and improve your digestion.

If you are struggling with your health, book an appointment with Jean and get your health back on track. Tel: 0424 407 560.