A recent article in Tiny Buddha reminded me of mindful eating. It is something I’ve attempted in the past but have forgotten about over the months. I usually begin cooking when I already feel hungry and by the time dinner/lunch is ready, I wolf my meal down in minutes. This often results in being more full than desired and finishing dinner faster than anticipated.
Today I decided a different approach to eating dinner. Instead of rapidly consuming the freshly prepared plate of warm rice pilaf sitting in front of me, I was fully aware of the flavour and texture of every single bite I took. It took a few more minutes to finish my meal but I found a new sense of appreciation and pleasure in the food that I was eating.
While mindfully eating, I sensed the precise time I felt full. An added bonus for a happy tummy.
Tips for Mindful Eating (Source: Tiny Buddha – Stop Devouring Food)
- Examine your emotions. Are you eating a chocolate bar because you’re hungry or because you’re stressed out about an upcoming deadline or a conflict with a friend? Be aware of what emotion you are experiencing when you feel the urge to eat. Emotional eating is harmful and not a useful coping strategy for stress.
- Choose a fruit you love and really take your time in consuming it. Feel its texture, flavour, sweetness, and purity. Really take the time to enjoy it. You will notice a new sense of appreciation for the fruit. Take the kiwi above as an example. Imagine how the bright green colours will blend as you chew and the burst of sweetness you will experience with every bite.
- Express gratitude. This relates to the food that you’re eating. Think about how this food got to the table. Did a family member cook it? Was it prepared by a chef? What about the farmer that originally grew the vegetables? Expressing gratitude allows you to be in the moment and for daily stressors to briefly dissipate as you enjoy you meal.
- Savour the flavour. Feel the texture of every bite you take. Feel the crunch of your teeth and the blending of spices and ingredients. You will gain a new appreciation for the food that you are eating.
- Make it a habit. Mindful eating will have you appreciating your meals to a greater extent and have you eating only until you feel satisfied. The benefits are great.
Have you tried mindful eating?
- Mindful Emotional Eating (ptmepersonalisedtraining.wordpress.com)
- Buddha This Way, Buddha That (magicalmysticalteacher.wordpress.com)
- Mindful eating: 5 easy tips to get started (mnn.com)