May 1, 2013
Take Time with Food

I was sitting down for dinner at my family's house last night and started to reminisce on the way we ate when I was growing up. From this I started thinking: how did my family's dining habits effect mine later in life?

The answer was in a change not in foods eaten, but in the way we ate. It was a change in 'mindfulness' with eating.

Mindful eating is a practice that has become increasingly popular over the last few years. Groups such as The Center for Mindful Eating ( even have entire teams of specialists dedicated to helping people in this practice. In my opinion, it is becoming more popular for a reason!

Mindfulness strategies allow you to more readily engage your senses when eating. They emphasize focusing on the smells, colors, textures, temperatures and flavors of the foods you eat. Since food is so dynamic in engaging these senses, this practice is a forcing function for eating more slowly,and eating more slowly and thoughtfully generally means a better sense of when you are starting to get full.

Begin to listen to your body, and know when it signals you are full. When you notice this you have likely found an equilibrium with your nutrition and an equilibrium in weight maintenance.

Another wonderful side of focusing on mindful eating for weight loss or weight maintenance is less restriction. You do not have to focus on avoiding certain foods. Rather, the focus is on eating in balance for better portion control.

Try mindfully eating one time this week and see how it affects you. Did you enjoy your meal more? Were you surprised by the flavor, taste or texture? Did you avoid getting overly full?

Written by Erika Brown

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