Food is intended to be eaten to provide nourishment for our body. Nourishment that allows us to live full, productive lives. In our society food has become the enemy and we eat mindlessly. There are foods that are good for us, foods that are bad for us, foods we should NEVER eat, foods that are overprocessed, foods that aren’t really foods at all. We are BUSY and we are ZONED OUT! We go faster and faster, trying to get more and more done.
Eating becomes a chore, an obligation…something to get done, to do to ease hunger, numb emotions. Meals are on the go…breakfast in the car on the way to work (if eaten at all), lunch at our desk so we can get one more thing done, dinner in front of the TV or on the way to our next appointment. We eat when we are not hungry, so we won’t be hungry in the next meeting or appointment. We don’t eat before the meeting, so we are starving and scarf down whatever is available or convenient. We have little awareness of the taste of food, how much we are eating, and how the food makes our bodies feel. This leads to over eating, weight gain, loss of pleasure in food/eating, digestive issues, emotional issues…we could go on and on!
So, what can I do about it? Mindful Eating is a simple solution that can be added into your daily life!
What is Mindful Eating? Mindful eating is a simple concept that brings our focus back to our food when we are eating. Jon Kabat-Zinn, founder of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program at the University of Massachusetts Medical center defines Mindfulness as:
Paying attention in a particular way, on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally.
Mindful eating brings pleasure back to food. You simply focus all thoughts and senses on the food you are eating right NOW! Nonjudgmentally, so there is not guilt or make wrong. We say simple, but it is not necessarily easy. It takes practice. It is a learned skill.
So why Mindful Eating? Studies show multiple benefits to incorporating the practice of Mindful eating into your life:
- Reduced overeating
- Reduced binge eating
- Weight loss
- Reduced BMI
- Improved blood sugar regulation, preventing or improving Type II Diabetes
- Improved food choices
- Improved emotional regulation
- Decrease snacking
- Decreased craving
How do I incorporate Mindful Eating as a practice in my daily life? Join us for our 28 day Mindful Eating Facebook challenge that begins on June 5th and ends on . See our Facebook page for more information.
What is required?
- Pick one meal a day that you will eat mindfully.
- Use the tip provided on the post for that day to eat mindfully.
- Continue tips from previous day when possible to make mindful eating part of your eating routine.
- Post regularly about your experience and what you discovered in practicing mindful eating.
Joining this challenge will allow you to bring your attention back to your meals. You will begin to notice your thoughts and conversation around food. You will begin to notice your habits around food. You will begin to create a habit of mindful eating. We look forward to you joining us!