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Eating With Mindfulness

mindless eatingA really excellent way to control your eating is to be aware of what you are eating. Too often we eat while watching television or working, sometimes not even looking at what we are eating before putting it in our mouths. Being a busy, involved individual, I have had to work on breaking the habit of eating too quickly, while driving, and other mindless eating habits. Many find when they start keeping a diary of what they are eating that they are actually eating much more than they realized. Even if we know how much we are eating, it is hard to actually enjoy food that way.

Mindfulness is an important technique to learn for relaxation. It basically requires focused attention to a single subject  and trying to fully experience that subject. Eating with mindfulness can help you practice relaxation, be more aware of what you are eating, and enjoy your food more thoroughly. Eating with mindfulness will require you to look at your food, smell your food, taste your food, feel the texture of your food in your mouth, and even listen for any sounds made by eating your food.

You must remove all distractions and may have to even eat alone; the only thing you should be looking at is your plate and utensils. The only thing you should be hearing is your utensils on the plate and yourself chewing your food. Tune into every detail of the experience of the presentation, cutting your food into bites, tasting and feeling the food in your mouth, and the experience of your stomach filling. What do you smell? What do you see? How does the food feel on your tongue? What is its temperature? How much air space is left in your mouth while you are chewing? How many times are you chewing? Are you savoring your food? If you are entirely appreciating the food that you are eating, you will not feel the need to eat more than necessary.

May 29th, 2009

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