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What Is Mindful Eating and How To Start



What Is Mindful Eating and How To Start



Mindful eating is healthy for both the mind and the body.




Tips for mindful eating. Image by Summer Tomato.


Appreciating your food and understanding what it does to your body is a science that has been around for centuries. But with the onset of fast food and oversaturated food culture, we’ve lost touch with what food really means to us.

Mindful Eating is a way to remember the values of food, not just nutritionally but to appreciate it in its presentation and its taste, and re-learning how to enjoy it as an experience to its fullest. Mindful Eating stems from The Center for Mindful Eating. You can read the original principles here. The first step is to be in the moment, pay attention, don’t judge.


Essentially, before you eat, understand what you’re eating. Appreciate how it went from seedling to your plate. It’s about trying to take in all aspects of the food. How it got to where it is now, how it looks, how it smells, how it feels when you bite into it, even the noise it makes when you eat it. Then taking in how you react to the food. How does it make you feel? What does it remind you of? Are there visual representations coming to mind, or is it of a memory you once had?


Being present and actively thinking about what you’re putting in your body really changes a mindset. It stops one from over-eating, food starts to taste better, you can truly enjoy a meal and feel and taste all the flavors and aromas that it has to offer.





How To Eat Mindfully


1: Take a moment before each meal to think about your food. Try to think about where it came from, it’s nutritional value, how it might make you feel, the amount of work it took to create what’s in front of you. Remember this can be for any meal, from cucumbers and hummus, to a full blown ten course meal. No matter what you’re putting in your body, all of it is important.


2: Start small. Small portions, small bites. You’ll be able to fully develop your senses if you’re not gulping down the food.


3: Eat slow. Chew more. Take the time to really understand the flavors that are developing in your mouth.


4: Use all your sense. Smell, see, feel your food. If you’re cooking, take note of how the aromas of the food change as it cooks. Take note of how the color changes when you add spices. Appreciating all the little things will make you appreciate it more when it all comes together.


Has mindful eating changed how you view food? Share in the comments below.


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