The next level of Mindful eating

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Eat with no distractions. 

No laptop, no TV in the background, no noise and ideally no phone. Just be with your meal, celebrate each bite of it.  

Why are you eating

Before you start eating, take a moment to assess how hungry you are. Where does your hunger feel? Is it a real food hunger, whim, boredom or emotional discomfort that you are about to feed? You can close your eyes to tune in to this feeling. Mindful eating starts with realizing what the reason for you to eat is. Any other reason than hunger shouldn’t drive you to eat. 

Be grateful

Take a moment to express gratitude for the meal you have, all the ingredients on your plate. Mentally thank all the people involved in the process of bringing this food to your table – farmers, harvesters, people who collected and delivered this food to the store you got it from, people who put these products on display and the ones who cooked it (you should also be grateful to yourself for the effort you put into cooking).

Celebrate each bite

Look at the food you have in front of yourself as if you saw it for the first time. Notice all the colors, texture and shape. Awaken your curiosity! See all the little details and appreciate the natural beauty of what you see. Smell your food with your eyes closed. What can you smell? What is the main aroma and what are delicate notes are noticeable? Mindful eating creates an experience out of the eating process, a moment of celebration.

Observe your hunger go away

After every other piece eaten stop and rate how the feeling of hunger changes. When you pay more attention to what is happening inside, you hear the voice of your body telling you that it needs more nutrients, energy or it had had enough. It is essential to listen to your body in this case, as the mind can be flooded with dopamine (primarily when the meal consists of harmful sugars). Mindful eating teaches you observation skills that help you to re-discover your forgotten inner voice.

Feel the nourishment

After you finish eating, take a moment to tune in again and assess your hunger level. Are you full? Did you get enough? It may take some time for the signal of satiety to arrive, so don’t rush for the next portion immediately after you’re done. Close your eyes and enjoy the pleasant aftertaste in your mouth. Imagine how all the nutrients get utilized by your body to give you energy, repair your tissues, build muscles, improve your skill, hair and nails complexion and facilitate the heartbeat. Feel how your body slowly gets re-constructed because of the excellent quality fuel you feed it with. Notice how good you feel – light but not hungry, well nourished, without the feeling of sleepiness or heaviness which usually accompanies junk food. Remember this feeling.

More tips to help you eat mindfully:

  • If you tend to eat fast, incorporate pauses into your meals by putting your utensils down between bites. 
  • Eat the food you like the most first. A lot of people tend to leave the tastiest pieces for later, which causes overeating, as even though they are full, they can’t miss the most delicious part. 
  • Avoid having multiple servings of food. Try to assess more or less what is the portion that you need to eat, put it on your plate without the need for seconds. 
  • Take small bites and chew your food longer to prevent overeating.