Something we see far too often is people eating too fast, with too many distractions and not taking the time to sit down and enjoy the food that they are consuming.
Why is this a problem?
When we eat too quickly and without full attention, we miss important hunger and fullness cues, along with our body cues (such as how certain foods make us feel).
Very often we eat in front of a distraction such as watching the TV, scrolling through social media, in a social environment etc.
It’s very important to eat without a distraction because if we get used to eating in these surroundings we’ll start to feel like we should be eating when we do those things. This can lead to us overeating and
creating unhealthy habits with food.
Possible strategies to enjoy each meal better would be to take the time to sit down and enjoy each meal without any distractions, this means getting rid of the phone or TV and adding an extra 5-10 minutes per meal. Not only will this put you in a position where you are chewing your food properly and digesting your food better, it will also allow you to pay extra attention to the smell, texture and taste of each bite. In return this will allow you to be more mindful of what you are consuming.
You may find that you always get distracted by a certain task whilst having a meal so something as simple as cutting back and enjoying 1 meal per day without distraction is going to be of huge benefit to you. From there you can then slowly progress to 2 meals then 3 until you are in a position where you are always in the present moment whilst
Be mindful of what effects you’re eating speed!
Try and notice what effects you’re eating speed and or focus.
Things such as:
– Who are are eating with
– Where you’re eating
– What food you’re eating
From there you can then assess where you may be going off track and address it.
Acknowledging hunger & fullness cues!
Basic appetite awareness is one of the most useful and accurate ways someone can recognize how much food their body needs.
For example, if people eat when they aren’t hungry or don’t stop when they are physically satisfied they’ll probably end up with less than ideal body composition and health.
If people don’t eat when they’re hungry, for instance if they purposely skip meals or restrict their physical intake they’ll often end up with nutrient deficiencies and the consequences of ongoing energy deprivation.
Your body is a machine and needs fuel in order to function, however the amount of fuel it needs to function is going to be down to the individual’s body composition, health markers, goals along with a host of other important factors.
Hunger is a normal and healthy biological response, just like going to sleep, going to the bathroom, or getting thirsty. It exists to keep us alive.
Fullness and satiation tell us when we’ve had enough.
It is so important to pay attention to these cues and take them into consideration alongside your goals in order to progress in a healthy and sustainable manner.
Take home message!
Mindful eating is essential in order to have a healthy relationship with food and also enjoy the food you are eating. We all live busy lifestyles where we are consistently rushing around after kids, doing college work and daily tasks so dedicating time to sit down and enjoy a healthy meal can become a challenge. At the end of the day your health is your wealth and it is essential to listen to your body and the cues it is giving you whilst eating in order to strive at your best.
Power – Positivity – Progress