Mindful Eating can really help you to make long-term nutrition changes. Which is so important, right?! It doesn’t matter how effective or good a ‘diet’ is if you can’t stick to it over time. We love the concept of Mindful Eating, and even include it as a part of our 7 Day Blitz program. I’ve spoken about the mental and emotional side around food and eating before, having been through my own journey with it. So how does Mindful Eating play a role? Mindful Eating is simply allowing yourself to actually be aware of the positive opportunities through food selection and preparation, respecting your inner wisdom or gut feeling (pun SO intended!). When you learn to use all of your senses when you eat, you’ll feel more satisfied and nourished. It’s understanding and acknowledging your feelings towards food – without any judgment. Becoming aware of your physical hunger and satiety cues to guide your decisions to begin and end eating, so that you can change your relationship to food.
The Principles of Mindfulness
- Mindfulness is deliberately paying attention, non-judgmentally.
- Mindfulness encompasses both internal processes and external environments.
- Mindfulness is being aware of what is present for you mentally, emotionally and physically in each moment.
- With practice, mindfulness cultivates the possibility of freeing yourself of reactive, habitual patterns of thinking, feeling and acting.
- Mindfulness promotes balance, choice, wisdom and acceptance of what is.
Mindful eating is
- Allowing yourself to become aware of the positive and nurturing opportunities that are available through food preparation and consumption by respecting your own inner wisdom.
- Choosing to eat food that is both pleasing to you and nourishing to your body by using all your senses to explore, savour and taste.
- Acknowledging responses to food (likes, neutral or dislikes) without judgment.
- Learning to be aware of physical hunger and satiety cues to guide your decision to begin eating and to stop eating.
How you can practice Mindful Eating
Use these statements to start practising mindfulness around food:
I acknowledge that there is no right or wrong way to eat but varying degrees of awareness surrounding my experience of food.
I accept that my eating experiences are unique to me.
I am an individual who by choice, directs my awareness to all aspects of food and eating on a moment-by-moment basis.
I am aware of and reflect on the effects caused by unmindful eating.
I experience insight about how I can act to achieve specific health goals as I become more attuned to the direct experience of eating and feelings of health.
I am becoming more aware of the interconnection of earth, living beings, cultural practices and the impact of my food choices has on those systems.
Check out these guided mindful eating meditations to get started 🙂
via The Center for Mindful Eating