Mindful eating—and why it matters
Mindfulness is focusing your awareness on what’s going on in the present moment, as well as the way you’re feeling inside. Here’s how tuning in to the here and now can not only help boost your mental wellbeing, but also help your weight loss.
Research has shown that mindful eating, or taking the time to slowly savor and contemplate each bite, can help improve digestion, reduce bloating, and allow you to enjoy food more. Here are four ways to get started
Slow it down
Maximise the enjoyment you get from your meals by taking time to savor the texture, aroma, and flavors of the food you are eating, says Dr Jacquie Lavin, Slimming World’s head of nutrition and research. “Eat too quickly and it’s easy to have more than you need, as your body’s ‘full’ signals haven’t had time to reach the brain,” she explains.
Take small bites
When food looks, smells, and tastes amazing, it’s easy to take big mouthfuls, finish our meal quickly, and go back for seconds. Instead, practice taking small bites and enjoying each with slow, thoughtful chewing while thinking about the different tastes you’re experiencing. Then, if you still feel like you want more, take a minute to tune into your body and ask, “Am I really still hungry?”
Add some crunch
Crunchy foods are not only satisfying to munch on, they also take a longer time to chew. “Adding crunchy foods to your meals so you have to chew more—such as cucumber and grated carrot in a sandwich—can help slow you down,” Dr Lavin says. Try tossing some Free Food options like snap peas, corn, bell peppers, cucumber, carrots, and even apples into salads, sandwiches, pasta dishes, and more.
Turn off technology
Being distracted by texts on our cellphone, surfing the internet, or watching TV can cause us to mindlessly eat more than we intended, and not enjoy our food as much as we could. Concentrate on eating your healthy, slimming meal instead, and you’ll not only appreciate the delicious taste, you’ll also feel more satisfied.
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