How to develop mindful eating? Practicing mindfulness exercises (mindfulness) helps improve focus, memory, and concentration and reduces stress and anxiety.
The best part is that you can extend this philosophy to other daily tasks and habits. Have you ever heard of mindful eating, for example? This technique consists of practicing food awareness, paying more attention to food and the timing of the meal.
Mindful eating: what is it and what are its benefits
Mindful eating has an effortless and exciting operation: eating with conscious attention, chewing, and enjoying food as much as possible. The concept is focused precisely on mindfulness – a Buddhist meditation practice that proposes to take advantage of the present moment.
In Mindful Eating: Eating with Mindfulness, the authors talk more about the advantages of this technique and give tips on how to put it into practice. Check out the main benefits of mindful eating:
- Eating with mindfulness, paying attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of food helps relax the body and mind.
The person chews and enjoys food more calmly by following mindful eating, which is essential for the digestion process.
- Conscientious eating practice helps to avoid overdoing food. This way, you only eat what you need and have a healthier lifestyle.
Eating Mindfully: 10 Steps to Mindful Eating
To put mindful eating into practice, it is necessary to change habits and organize the routine to eat better and select healthy foods, vegetables, fruits, cereals, legumes, and lean meats. You must follow a few steps to eat consciously.
Set the table and disconnect from your cell phone
For starters, it’s essential to set the table clean to make the environment pleasant. Preferably place only placemats and food dishes. Another critical point is to keep your cell phone and other devices (TV or notebook) away during the meal.
Sit comfortably and use the cutlery calmly
After setting the table, you should sit comfortably, with your spine very straight, and handle food unhurriedly. Then, you can rest the cutlery on the plate while chewing to eat more calmly.
Conscious eating: take a deep breath and observe the food
Another critical point of mindful eating is to enjoy food to the fullest. Before eating, the idea is that you take a deep breath – to enter a kind of meditative state – and observe the food you will consume, paying attention to the aromas, colors, and textures.
Serve smaller portions of food
As the idea is to have a conscious and balanced diet, another important step is to control yourself when setting up the dish. For example, you should serve smaller portions to consume just enough for the body to be satisfied.
Eat slowly and enjoy your meal
Eating slowly and enjoying the taste of food to the fullest is one of the most important parts! To do this, you should set aside time just for meals, focusing on what you are currently eating.
remember to chew more often
During a meal, remember to chew your food more often, ensuring better digestion and absorption of nutrients. This way, it is also possible to avoid exaggerations or problems such as heartburn and reflux.
Observe the sensations that food causes
To have a complete mindful eating experience, you must think about the sensations that the meal brings. Close your eyes to enjoy the moment more intensely, feeling the flavors, aromas, and food aspects.
Don’t think about the calories
Another critical point is to let go of the number of calories in the dish. You shouldn’t be scolding yourself for the food you eat – but rather connect and enjoy the experience to the full.
Enjoy the surroundings and the company.
Creating a pleasant atmosphere (with music, for example) and having good company during the meal also makes all the difference. A good tip is to organize the routine so that the whole family can eat together as much as possible.
Finish by thanking for the meal
To end the experience, the idea is to express gratitude for the food and the family time. Thanking for food helps bring more well-being and positivity to the routine, you can bet!