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Mindful Eating


Do you ever find yourself rushing through your mealtimes? Or perhaps you get to the end of a busy day completely starving and craving a sugar fix because you skipped a meal? Mindful eating is the act of truly paying attention to what we are eating, when and why.

Although we talk often about the foods that we should and should not consume, we do not generally attention to the best way to eat our meals. Mindful eating makes the experience a sensory pleasure. It also enables us to register when we’re full and can therefore prevent overeating.

Mindful eating encourages us to truly pay attention to what we’re eating and why. It shows us how our bodies and minds are really reacting to the nourishment that they are both receiving and makes it much easier not to overeat or simply eat for comfort.




Eating mindfully can help you to:

  • Slow down and take a break from the business of your day, easing stress and anxiety.
  • Make healthier choices about what you eat by focusing on how each type of food makes you feel after eating it.
  • Look at and change your relationship with food, for example do you turn to food for emotional comfort.
  • Get greater pleasure from the food you eat, as you learn to slow down and more fully appreciate your meals and snacks.
  • Make a greater connection to where your food comes from, how it’s produced, and the journey it’s taken to your plate.
  • Improve your digestion by eating slower.
  • Feel fuller sooner and by eating less food.
  • Eat in a healthier, more balanced way.

Give the following mindful eating exercise a try and I can guarantee you will quickly see the benefits for yourself.



The exercise begins at the table once you have prepared your meal and seated yourself to eat.

The exercise begins at the table once you have prepared your meal and seated yourself to eat.

  1. Ensure that the room is silent and free from distractions – this means no television, no computers and no smart phones. This can be difficult if you eat your meals as a family and some members of your family are reluctant to part with technology. But, if you are dining on your own, there is no excuse not to commit to this.
  2. Feel free to begin eating whenever you like, but ensure that you do so slowly. Be aware of every piece of food that you move from the plate to your mouth. Recognise that there is no need to rush and that you have the time to savour and enjoy every single taste.
  3. With each mouthful of food that you take, chew between 15 and 20 times before you swallow.
  4. Try to recognise the flavour of your food as you chew and appreciate the love that has gone into preparing this meal. Recognising flavours in this way helps you to be much more aware of what you’re eating and why. Ask yourself if you really enjoy these flavours, and try to consider what this meal is doing to benefit your body and your mind.
  5. If you are eating as a family and you have children, then make a point to ask your children what the food tastes like, and how the texture of the food feels inside the mouth. Ask where this food came from and what might have been required in order to produce it. You can also ask yourselves these questions. This serves as a good way to direct the conversation in a productive and mindful direction. Which is especially useful if your family have decided that silence meal times are off the agenda.

Eating in this way will help you to create a positive relationship with your food, and you will soon start to appreciate every meal for the gift that it truly is.

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