It is no secret that eating habits have changed a lot in the past year, mainly due to the stress related to the coronavirus crisis and other body responses to uncertainty. Nonetheless, the same way as food is organic energy to us, mindfully consuming it is crucial and that is why “Mindful Eating” is a crucial wellness technique and method you should implement in your lifestyle at the moment.
Mindful eating is a technique that helps you gain control over your eating habits. It has been shown to promote weight loss, reduce binge eating, and help you feel better.
Fundamentally, mindful eating involves:
- eating slowly and without distraction
- listening to physical hunger cues and eating only until you’re full
- distinguishing between true hunger and non-hunger triggers for eating
- engaging your senses by noticing colors, smells, sounds, textures, and flavors
- learning to cope with guilt and anxiety about food
- eating to maintain overall health and well-being
- noticing the effects food has on your feelings and figure
- appreciating your food
These things allow you to replace automatic thoughts and reactions with more conscious, healthier responses.
Today’s fast-paced society tempts people with an abundance of food choices. On top of that, distractions have shifted attention away from the actual act of eating toward televisions, computers, and smartphones.
Eating has become a mindless act, often done quickly. This can be problematic, since it takes your brain up to 20 minutes to realize you’re full.
If you eat too fast, the fullness signal may not arrive until you have already eaten too much. This is very common in binge eating.
By eating mindfully, you restore your attention and slow down, making eating an intentional act instead of an automatic one.
What’s more, by increasing your recognition of physical hunger and fullness cues, you are able to distinguish between emotional and true, physical hunger.
You also increase your awareness of triggers that make you want to eat, even though you’re not necessarily hungry.
By knowing your triggers, you can create a space between them and your response, giving you the time and freedom to choose how to react.
Therefore, next time you eat, be mindful about it.