Do you feel like you lose your mid around certain foods? Do you binge eat? One of the things I used to do years ago before I started on a "diet" was to eat everything that didn't run away from me the day before my "diet" was to begin. So what did that do to me? First, it made me feel lousy when I went to bed that night and woke up the next day. I had hat I call a food hangover. My blood sugar would be all over the place so I craved the foods I consumed in great volume the day before. This made it tough to start my "diet" so I would delay it another day to quell my cravings with the foods I was trying to avoid. This cycle made me a serial "dieter" and ultimately led to my large weight fluctuations.
I was also always, and still am, a fast eater. I have, for years, often not given myself the proper amount of time to sit, down, relax and eat slowly and mindfully. By eating quickly, you don't give your brain the time it needs to realize you have enough, or even more than enough, food in your stomach. It takes your brain about twenty minutes to catch up with your stomach. If you stuff your food quickly, you may find yourself overeating before you even know you've had enough.
Mindfulness, in general is a Buddhist philosophy that brings your rapt attention to what you are currently doing and the feelings experienced while you are engaged in the task. It's a form of meditation and helps you to recognize feelings and emotions. Mindful eating is the practice of giving your full attention to the food in front of you and your consumption of it, how you feel as you eat emotionally and physically.
To practice mindful eating, follow these steps:
- Sit down away from distractions like the television, computer, phone, or anything that can take your attention away from the food and eating it
- Eat slowly, chewing every bite until it is almost liquid in your mouth. Digestion begins in the mouth and the more of a head start you give the digestion process in your mouth, the more nutrients are available to you.
- As you eat, feel the physical cues your body is giving you. Are you feeling satiated? Does the food taste good? Is the texture pleasing?
- Before you eat, make sure you are feeling true hunger and not a reaction to a stressor in your life. If you are truly hungry eat something that is nutritionally sound and not junk food. If you don't care to et something good for you, chances are you weren't really physically hungry in the first place.
- Try not to eat while you are feeling stress. Stressful eating affects digestion and may lead to poor food choices. If you are feeling stressed, go for a short walk or sit and do some deep breathing to help relieve some of the stress before you stuff your feelings.
- Be aware of the aromas, the texture, the visual impact of the food as you slowly eat and savor every bite.
- Never eat while you are watching television or are engaged in other activity where your attention is not on the food or the act of eating. This leads to mindlessly consuming volumes of food without you even being aware of it.
Mindful eating is good for weight management, stress management, portion control and helping to get in touch with your feelings. Try it the next time you get hungry.
ICYMI...How about a sugar detox? I don't have a fancy name for this program but I can tell you a little about it. We'll begin on September 17th and end October 15th using Zoom. Each session will consist of a short presentation by me, followed by Q&A, discussion of challenges and celebration of wins.
If you want to get your energy back, lose a few pounds and generally feel better, this is the place for you. I'll share some of the strategies I used to eliminate sugar from my life and to get back on track in my own weight loss journey.
Won't it be nice to eliminate cravings, not feel that "hangry" feeling when your blood sugar drops, and to be able to control what you're eating?
Click here to schedule a quick chat with me so we can decide if this is a good program for you. You'll be glad you did.
As a health coach, I work with women who are facing serious health challenges like heart disease, metabolic syndrome and diabetes or who have been diagnosed as having a precursor to a serious health issue such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol or high blood sugar. I help them make food and lifestyle changes so they can get healthy, live longer and enjoy a fuller, happier, more energetic life. If you would like to have a free consultation about the health challenges you have and the improvements you would like to see in your health, click here to schedule a no strings attached call.