Mindfulness seems to be the word of the moment but what does it really mean and how does it fit into your daily life? Mindfulness is the process of paying attention to what is currently happening to you and around you.
What is Mindful Eating?
Mindful Eating is eating with intention and attention.
Eat with intention. Be purposeful when you eat.
- Eat when you’re truly hungry.
- Eat to meet your body’s needs by choosing food that is nourishing and satisfying.
- Eat with the goal of feeling better when you’re finished than you did when you started.
Eat with attention. Devote your full attention to eating.
- Eliminate or minimise distractions.
- Tune into the ambiance, flavours, smells, temperature, and texture of the food.
- Listen to your body’s cues of hunger and fullness.
Mindful eating is a non-diet approach. Which means that you can eat basically anything you want, there are no ‚forbidden foods’ and you’re not counting calories. An apple is not better or worse than a muffin, and eating a little is not better than eating a lot. Bringing mindfulness into your eating habits means developing more awareness to your direct experience around food and eating, here and now, without judgment. You will learn to pay attention to your body, to feel what it needs and how much it needs. Research has shown that patterns of dietary restriction are related to long-term weight gain and poorer health outcomes. The data now shows that use of awareness and attention through mindfulness-based eating practices and use of behavioral psychology to identify healthy patterns of eating based on individual needs and preferences improve not only health outcomes but quality of living. However, positive outcomes are not the focus of this practice.
Mindful eating starts in the NOW, not with a desirable vision of the future.
This may sound paradoxical, because you start this adventure with a desire. Letting go of this desire and accepting things, especially yourself, without any judgment, actually clears the path to changes. Changes that arise naturally, from the inside rather than establishing them by force (through, restrictions, rules, dietary discipline). It requires friendly curiosity and an open attitude regarding yourself and your experiences. You are bound to discover many interesting facts about yourself and will learn to make conscious choices that will benefit your body, mind and soul. You will learn how food affects the way you feel, physically and emotionally, and if it satisfies your needs or not. It’s all about your experience, in this moment, without any other goal but to gain more awareness regarding you and your habits, patterns, needs and desires.
Are you interested in learning about what you are truly hungry for? Join By: Dr. Brandi Eijsermans, Optimal Wellness Global & Sabine Leitner-de Potter, RainbowMind for a dining experience to reconnect with your body, mind and the joy of eating.
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