Most health practitioners known that of the greatest culprits in the battle of the bulge is mindless munching or snacking that so many do without hunger or awareness. For many, the kilos seem to pile on, despite attempts to stick to a healthy diet. Because of this, more and more people have begun to practice an ancient philosophy of healthy living that offers a solution to the mindless munch: by being mindful.
Defined as the state of being aware of yourself by observing your own perceptions in each moment, practicing mindfulness connects you to the present, and accepting your own responses to food, whether you like or dislike what you’re eating and drinking, without judgment. Eating and drinking mindfully helps you become aware of your true physical hunger and your cues for fullness, which can help you decide when you really want to eat or drink, what foods and drinks you really crave at that moment and when you’ve really had enough.
Unlike the approach of fad diets, when you practice mindfulness, no food is bad or forbidden and there’s less tendency to overindulge when you’re focused on identifying exactly what your body is asking for. Mindfulness can also help you reconnect with the simple aspects of eating and drinking, which provide your body with nourishment and a pleasure by engaging all your senses. Allowing your taste buds to reconnect with simple and natural flavors can also reduce your desire for junk foods and sweets.
Here are some easy ways to implement mindful eating and drinking into your daily life:
Begin with an exercise of tasting, exploring, savoring something as simple as a raisin or a glass of sparkling water, rolling it around in your mouth and swallowing it slowly.
Chew and savor your food and drink: chewing and savoring brings you in touch with the nuances and texture of food, increasing satisfaction.
Smell and see your food: taking the time to smell and look at your food increases your enjoyment of the experience, which translates to a lesser tendency to munch mindlessly.
Eat at the table: Give mealtime your full attention and avoid eating on the run.
Focusing on these simple steps can help “reset” your taste buds, so you can better appreciate the simplicity of healthy food and beverages, and eat and drink with greater consciousness for a healthier life.