When it comes to nutrition – food – diet everyone today seems to be obsessed about finding out what is the best nutritional plan out there. But very few spend time focusing on how and when this nutritional plan is put to practise i.e. the actual act of eating your meal – commonly referred to as Conscious Eating or Mindful Eating.
What I am trying to say is we keep reading, hearing & talking about the most organic foods, the most nutritious meals, healthy oils, fibre rich snacks, vegan meals, and so on. But even after doing so much research and with people actually making changes to their meals, it is so common nowadays to hear of individuals suffering with allergies, intolerences, and or digestive issues. The net result is there is a lot of restriction then put on foods; what foods are best and what food to avoid leaving very little options to choose from. But has anyone thought: why these issues are growing drastically? why its affecting so many people so fast?
The answer to this is most probably down to changes in our eating habits. When we eat? How we eat? Where we eat?
Lets take a little time to answer the questions below and find out if your habits are coming in the way of your food nourishing you. We all invest our time and resources in getting the right food on the plate. Are you wasting your time, energy & money because of this?
- Do you eat your meals quickly or in a rush or hurry?
- Do you watch television whilst eating?
- Do you work at your desk and eat?
- After eating do you feel stuffed or lethargic or tired?
- Do you use your phone or read a book or read newspaper whilst eating?
- Are you emotional (sad, overly happy, very excited, angry, irritated, upset) when you sit to eat?
- Do you tend to have big portions of meal as a result of eating quickly?
- Do you tend to take loads of water to moisten your tongue?
If you have answered YES to any of the above, STOP NOW and make a conscious effort to change those habits. Here are a few simple practical tips to get you started:
- Eat your meals slowly, chewing properly – Pause between bites, place your fork & spoon down after each morsel. Chop your veggies in big chunks forcing you to chew. Focus on each morsel not on the next task lined up.
- When eating just eat: turn off the television or computer screen, put your mobile phone or book away, stop working, avoid having important discussion or conversation over a meal..
- Avoid drinking water with meals as it dilutes your digestive juices. Make sipping water through the day a habit.
- Avoid eating if emotional. Stop using food as a comfort Or when you are bored.
- Maintain gaps between meals. Stop grazing too often as it does not give rest to the digestive system.
- Include different taste in your meals to add to the pleasure. Ø Practise gratitude towards the ones involved in the preparation of your meal.
- Eat when hungry and not starving as it will result in quick eating. Ø Stop eating when your body tells you to: less salivation in the mouth is one sign.
- Practise relaxed breathing just before you start your meal. Ø And sit quietly for few minutes after you have eaten.
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