Eating Mindfully. One bite at a time…

In Lifestyle, Meditation by Wendy ChristienLeave a Comment

Mindfulness Increases Fullness

Many people who struggle with diet react mindlessly to food triggers such as thoughts, feelings and environment. Being aware of these influences that shape your unhealthy eating habits will help you achieve healthier mindful habits.

Did You Know?

It takes 20 minutes for your brain to register the feeling of being full.

During this time, receptors inform the brain that you are busy receiving nutrients by sending hormone signals. For example, the cholecystokinin hormone, released by your intestines; and the leptin hormone send messages to your brain about how full you are, what your body needs and how much energy your body is about to store. These hormones also aid in the release of dopamine, which is why we all feel so euphoric and content after a fulfilling meal.

Mindful eating can assist in increased attention and in general helps to lower stress. Lower stress improves gut health and overall mind function. Research revealed that increases in gray matter concentration in the area of the brain involved in learning, memory, and emotional control when practicing mindfulness.

How to Eat mindfully:

Set a Place at The Table

Sit at a table with your loved ones, not in front of the TV. And if you’d prefer, sit in the lounge but keep the TV switched off until your meals are finished. Play mellow music and dim the lights if possible.

First Bite = Eyes Closed.

Chew very slowly, being aware of the sensory experience of chewing and tasting. Focus on each flavor and texture, even the nostalgia that first bite may bring. Chew your food (25 times) with each bite that follows.

Meaningful Talk or Silence

Mindful eating doesn’t have to be in solitude. Share the experience with your loved ones. This has been an immensely strong form of bonding. Avoid the small talk.

Use Smaller Plates

Serve small portions – about 20% less than you’re used to. You’ll notice a change in the amount of food you actually need to take in. This will also assist in weight loss, as you consume the correct portions for your body.

Fork Down Between Bites

This will assist you in taking longer when nourishing yourself. Perhaps you can take a small sip of water in-between bites. Savour every singe moment so that you’re fully aware and intimate with feeding your body.

Make Eating More Difficult

Eat with your non-dominant hand, or even with chopsticks. Take smaller bites to make the meal last longer which will force you to be more mindful about each bite you take, and the sensations that come with it.

Don’t Eat From The Packet

Take dried fruits, or a packet of nuts as an example. Rather pour your portion in to a small bowl or plate, and mindfully eat them one by one.

How Food Makes You Feel

While you’re eating, and after you finish a meal, consider how you feel physically, emotionally and mentally. Is this food nourishing you and helping you feel and perform your best?

Give Thanks

Start each meal by saying a few words of gratitude for everything it took for this food to get to your plate today. Send love to the cook who prepared it. Be grateful for the miracle it took to grow from a seed into its fullest form ready for harvest.

  • Set a Place at The Table

    Sit at a table with your loved ones, not in front of the TV. And if you’d prefer, sit in the lounge but keep the TV switched off until your meals are finished. Play mellow music and dim the lights if possible.

  • First Bite = Eyes Closed.

    Chew very slowly, being aware of the sensory experience of chewing and tasting. Focus on each flavor and texture, even the nostalgia that first bite may bring. Chew your food (25 times) with each bite that follows.

  • Meaningful Talk or Silence

    Mindful eating doesn’t have to be in solitude. Share the experience with your loved ones. This has been an immensely strong form of bonding. Avoid the small talk.

  • Use Smaller Plates

    Serve small portions – about 20% less than you’re used to. You’ll notice a change in the amount of food you actually need to take in. This will also assist in weight loss, as you consume the correct portions for your body.

  • Fork Down Between Bites

    This will assist you in taking longer when nourishing yourself. Perhaps you can take a small sip of water in-between bites. Savour every singe moment so that you’re fully aware and intimate with feeding your body.

  • Make Eating More Difficult

    Eat with your non-dominant hand, or even with chopsticks. Take smaller bites to make the meal last longer which will force you to be more mindful about each bite you take, and the sensations that come with it.

  • Don’t Eat From The Packet

    Take dried fruits, or a packet of nuts as an example. Rather pour your portion in to a small bowl or plate, and mindfully eat them one by one.

  • How Food Makes You Feel

    While you’re eating, and after you finish a meal, consider how you feel physically, emotionally and mentally. Is this food nourishing you and helping you feel and perform your best?

  • Give Thanks

    Start each meal by saying a few words of gratitude for everything it took for this food to get to your plate today. Send love to the cook who prepared it. Be grateful for the miracle it took to grow from a seed into its fullest form ready for harvest.

Opening blessing

Thank you to the Earth for giving birth to this food. Thank you to the Sun for nourishing it. Thank you to the Wind for carrying its seed. Thank you to the Rain for quenching its thirst. Thank you to the hands that helped to grow this food, to bring it to our tables, to nourish our minds, bodies, and spirits. Thank you to our friends, both old and new, to our families, and our loved ones. Thank you.


The Principles of Mindful Eating

By The Center for Mindful Eating

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What are your thoughts?

Now that you’ve learned a bit about Mindfulness and Mindful eating, I would like to hear from you! Did you find this article helpful? Have you had any experiences with mindful eating before this post? And most of all, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask in the comment section below!