What is Mindful eating?

How often do you find yourself eating something and then getting to the end of it and realising that you had eaten the whole packet, finished the bag, or cleaned the plate and you couldn’t remember doing it?  Many people living busy and stressed lives are like this.  Especially now when people are on mobile devices or a device of some sort and so tune out even more to everyday or habitual acts.

Mindful eating is the process of bringing your attention and focus to the moment that you are in whilst eating.  It is slowing down the process of eating the food and focusing on the action of eating itself.  In slowing down and focusing on that moment there are a number of different things that activate for people.Stress uomo in carriera

Firstly, the sense of taste increases as by focusing on the food you are then aware of the taste of it.  In the MasterChef programs on tv many of the judges even close their eyes so that they are even more focused on the food in that moment whilst tasting it.  They are focused on the different tastes that they experience as they are eating the food.

Secondly and a bit more subtly, the sense of sound is increased.  Now the crunchiness, the sound that the food makes as it is being chewed, is more audible and people are aware of what sounds the food that they are eating are making as they are being eaten.

And thirdly, people are more aware of the movements themselves in the actions of eating the food.  From placing the food in the mouth, then chewing it, through to the swallowing of the food, people are more aware of the sensations of their mouth, their jaw, their throat as the food goes through the different stages.

By eliminating other distractions and focusing in the moment on the action of eating the food, the overall experience is increased by these different senses being activated.  The slowing down also allows the body’s own signals about being full, not enjoying the taste, or some other message to be heard more clearly.  This connecting into the bodies responses to the food itself, can lead to better health and wellbeing.