Eating mindfully has several health benefits, namely conscientious and nutritious eating and it also prevents us from over-eating or binge eating. So how can we practice the art of eating mindfully?
Removing distractions like cellphone, ipads and tv from our dinner table is one of the first things we can do – eating while talking on the phone or watching TV shows is a form of distracted eating which is the opposite of mindful eating and that is when we are not aware of what we are actually ingesting. We should also develop the habit of eating silently without talking so much – when we eat quietly we are more likely to savor every bite of the food. If we are talking too much while eating, that’s another form of distracted eating.
We can also practice eating slower- chewing down our meal hurriedly does not bring satisfaction and we don’t fully register what we just consumed. We can add a variety of spices, herbs and condiments to the food to get more satisfaction – a flavorful savory meal adds more to our satisfaction and therefore promote satiety signals.
We can build a connection and relationship with our meal plate – by thinking back to hunter gatherer days when we had to actually hunt down our meals- we don’t live in hunter gatherer society anymore but we can still build a story around our dinner plate. Perhaps we got the recipe from our mum or grandma or we can imagine where the ingredients were cultivated or harvested.
What about eating at set times and places instead of eating randomly anywhere? When we commit to a set meal time and place then we are less likely to eat anything anywhere randomly. Finally, we should enjoy our meal with loved ones – it is important to enjoy the meals with family, friends and loved ones because that will bring us peace and joy and more satisfaction.