Most of the times, you eat mindlessly, when you are bored, alone, sad, distracted and sometime even without any trigger. And then you blame the food, the fat cells, your metabolism,your stomach and even your intestines for the weight gain.
Well, the problem does not lie there. The problem lies in the mind. It lies in your lack of awareness of the messages coming in from our body, from your very cells and from your heart. This is where Mindful Eating comes into play
So, What Exactly Is Mindful Eating?
Mindful eating involves paying full attention to the experience of eating and drinking, both inside and outside the body. It is about paying attention to the colors, smells, textures, flavors, temperatures, and even the sounds (crunch!) of our food. Mindful eating is eating with intention and attention.
And, What Are The Benefits?
Mindful eating helps in a countless number of ways to improve your relation with food . Here are a few:
-Helps in sustained weight loss and better skin and hair.
-Engaging in purposeful activities give you a sense of accomplishment, which translates into happiness
-It lessens the consumption of junk food.
-It keeps a check on quantity and quality of food
-It aids in digestion. Chewing food slowly alkalizes it and results in better digestion.
How Should You Practice Mindful Eating?
You must understand that your old habits of eating and not paying attention are not easy to change. So, don’t try to make drastic changes. Lasting change takes time, and is built on many small changes. So, start slow.
1 . Ask Yourself The 4 Questions
When it comes to food, the thumb-rule to follow is ‘less is more’. So it is essential to apply our minds to the What, When, How and Why of eating. Just ask yourself there four simple questions before seating down to eat the next time. Chances are that you will eat less, healthy and as per your bodies need, the goals of mindful eating.
2 . Eat When Hungry
Your eating habits are governed by the clock on the wall and you eat because it’s routine to have four meals a day. Allow the primal feeling of hunger come back to you. Let your body experience hunger naturally when it feels low on nutrients. It is as important to stop when the hunger subsides. This way we will never need a diet to keep the calories at check.
3 . Enjoy Your Food
Most of the time, you are eating while doing something else. So you do not get the sense of what you are eating and at the end of it. Eating is one of the rare times, you get the chance to spend quality time with yourselves. Start by seeing how food looks, how it smells and then proceed to chewing on every morsel that we put in our mouth.
4 . Balance It Out
Understand food, read about it, do your research and draw up a chart of what all you need in what quantities. Couple salads with ice-cream or a fruit with a burger, variety will spice up your palate if not your life. More importantly, be patient and stick to the plan.
5 . Say NO To Emotional Eating
Dangerously, not being in the correct emotional state pushes one towards junk food. Let the mind bail you out. Think about what is on the plate and why do you want it. Food that begs justification is best avoided. We all know that emotional eating will only alleviate our pain or sadness momentarily. So it is actually not worth it.
So go ahead and embrace the practice of mindful eating and you will never need excuses to overeat or to munch on unhealthy foods again. Eat Healthy, Stay Healthy!