Several years ago I visited Italy on holiday. There were many things that impressed me about the beautiful and romantic country, but I was especially impressed with the food. The food was amazing – every meal was a culinary delight. That’s not why I was impressed. What impressed me was that it was unheard of to grab a quick bite while you were on the go. Every meal and espresso break was an event; sharing a meal with someone was a true occasion that wasn’t taken lightly.
That trip has always been a reminder to be more mindful when I eat. When I eat, I try and make sure that my eating is intentional, and not a nervous habit or something done out of boredom. Here are some ways to improve your mindful eating habits:
- End the multitasking. Carve out a little time in your day to give eating your undivided attention.
- Take two to three deep breaths. Take a moment before you eat to slow your mind and focus on the food in front of you.
- Savor the first bite. Engage your senses and savor the first bite. Notice the colors, aromas, flavors, and textures.
- Slow down. Put down the fork between bites or chew a bit more thoroughly before swallowing.
- Let your thoughts fly by. When your thoughts start to wander, acknowledge them, and return to focusing on your eating.
- Pause halfway through. Take a moment to reflect on how full you feel. Are you still hungry and want to continue, or are you approaching fullness?
- Reflect on your food choices. Which foods increase vs. sap your energy? Pick foods that engage your taste buds and work well with your body.
Learn more at PacificSource.com/mindful-eating.