Five Tips for Mindful Eating and Why it Matters {+ Video}

Mindfulness isn't just yoga and meditation, burning sage and sitting on a meditation cushion chanting 'OM'. Mindfulness can extend into all aspects of our lives with just a little conscious awareness and minimal effort. Mindfulness is derivative of a “monastic” practice, meaning it was originally made for monks. It utilizes deliberate focus to increase your consciousness and appreciation of the present moment.

One of my favorite methods for incorporating mindfulness with my clients is to do so at mealtime. When we aren’t totally present at meal time, if we aren’t eating mindfully, it can be a disaster for our digestion, for our stress levels, for our moods and many times we can end up accidentally overeating. Often the opposite of eating mindfully is eating mindlessly, and we all know how that goes for us.

The practice of mindful eating is all about learning to pay attention. It can be a form of meditation, almost. Instead of mindlessly shoveling food into your mouth almost unconsciously, not even tasting the food you’re eating, I want to teach you how to slow down and savor your meals. With mindful eating we take the time to pause, to notice thoughts, feelings, and sensations surrounding our meals and to truly taste each bite. I have found this practice be vital to eating intuitively and finding a lifestyle that is appropriate for the individual.

Not only will this make meals more pleasurable and delightful to ALL our senses, but it’s also better for our digestion and it keeps us from overeating.

When our body is in a chronic state of stress, our nervous system will actually shut down our digestion system, as a protection mechanism. This is why one of my all time favorite tips for folks deal with digestive issues to take a look at the stress in their life and specifically the stress around meal times. 

As well, when we are stressed or not paying attention it’s hard to truly understand and realize the need to stop when we are satisfied, we cannot do any of this if we are on autopilot, shoveling food into our faces.  

As far as I am concerned, if you’re not truly tasting and enjoying your food – that’s a problem. How can you ever expect to be able to listen to your body's subtle cues, to tap into your intuition and 

Mindful eating is not a quick fix, but very often it is a very valuable solution, of course it’s also FREE and like most important things in life, it takes practice. 

Before we get into the mindful eating tips, I wanted to very quickly explain some of the important things you NEED to know about digestion and why mindful eating can help.

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