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6 Mindful Eating Tips That Actually Work
Mindful eating is about being aware of what you put in your body, making the healthy choice even when it’s harder than eating quick, pre-packaged junk foods. The more mindful you are, the easier it will be for you to take control over your eating habits, and you’ll have an easier time fighting the urge to eat the wrong things. Here are a few mindful eating tips that will help you to see the weight loss you want:
Plan Your Menu
Mindful eating begins long before you sit down at the table! To be more mindful of what you eat, you need to be mindful of what you cook. That means taking the time to sit down and actually plan your meals. Think about what you want to eat for a whole week, and lay out a menu that is complete and offers a wide range of variety. That way, you’ll still be able to enjoy your food, but you will be able to make the healthy choice of what to eat every time.
Eat in 20 Minutes
One of the best mindful eating tips you can get is to take your time to eat. Most people scarf down their meals in a hurry, or they shovel bite after bite into their mouths because they are pressured by time or the desire to do something else. Instead, set yourself a timer for 20 minutes, and try to take the entire 20 minutes to eat that one plate of food. You’ll end up being a lot more mindful of the food you’re eating because of that longer meal time.
Appreciate the Meal
When you eat, think about what went into putting that meal on your plate. Start out by thinking about the amount of effort the farmers went to when raising the animal that provided your meat, planting and harvesting the wheat and vegetables you’re eating. Take the time to think about how much time and money your city has invested into delivering clean drinking water, something that we all take for granted. The more you appreciate the time and effort that went into producing that meal, the more you will be mindful of what you’re eating.
One great way to focus more on your meal and the food is to eat with your non-dominant hand. This will prove a lot harder than you think, so you’ll end up eating a lot more slowly. Slow eating is more mindful, especially when you have to focus on not letting all of the food fall off your fork. You’ll be much more aware of how each item on your plate balances and works together, helping you to realize just how much variety of texture, color, fragrance, and flavor there is in the food you eat.
Think Before You Eat
Instead of just reaching for whatever food you’re in the mood for, think about whether or not you really need it. Go over the last meal you ate and the time you ate it, and evaluate just how much of that food you could have possibly digested and burned via the activity you’ve done in that time. If the answer is that you probably shouldn’t be hungry, try distracting yourself with a book, a short walk, or even a glass of water. That moment of pausing and thinking can help you to avoid overeating.
Take Your Time with Each Bite
Don’t rush to swallow every bite. Chew, focus on the texture and consistency, the mix of flavors. Make sure to really chew each bite thoroughly before reaching for another.