Mindful eating is when a person puts thought into the process. It means observing the nutrient count, colour, texture, aroma, temperature and the sound of the food you are about to eat. Mindless eating is just the opposite. Incorporation of multi-tasking in our lives has given birth to mindless eating where we grab a pack of snickers or wafers and start eating without gauging the taste or nutrient content. This can lead to over eating, eating anything without checking if it has side effects, eating without checking the hygiene of the place where food was made, etc.
However, once you start to see the adverse effects that mindless eating has on your body, you’ll not be able to ignore it anymore. Thoughtful eating helps in weight loss and improving eating behavior. Therefore, it is good to incorporate some tips in our lives to foster healthy eating.
1) Whenever you have a craving to eat something, ask yourself: Are you ‘really’ hungry? Or, are you just bored or tired? We usually end up eating when we do not have anything else to do.
2) In case you’re just bored or tired, engage yourself in an activity that can relax you.
3) Do not eat while walking. The reason being you will end up eating more because while walking we tend to divert our attention everywhere around without interpreting how much has been eaten.
4) Avoid eating packaged food that can be consumed directly. When you cook and serve yourself the food, you’ll put more effort and hence, track what you’re eating.
5) Eat in small utensils. After eating the food in the plate, you can add more food if you’re hungry. This will avoid useless eating just to finish the plate.
6) Do not operate a cellular phone, laptop, computer etc while eating. This again will keep you busy munching while your mind doesn’t even pay attention to what the mouth does.
7) Think about the food before starting to eat. How it was made, is it good for your body, is it allergic to you, does it have nutrients etc.
Healthy, mindful eating, where we give the food being consumed its due attention, leads not only to a healthier lifestyle, but also helps you enjoy our meals a lot more.