Just picture this – you’ve barely managed to sleep through the night, have woken up tired and groggy, and have no time left for anything but to get ready and hit the office in time for that important meeting. The morning rush leaves you with no time to even catch up with a healthy breakfast. And because you don’t want to kickstart your day with an empty tummy, the easiest option is to grab a cold sandwich or a coffee on the way to work, manage to gulp it down, and somehow make it to work on time.
Sounds like a usual morning routine for quite a lot of us, right? The sad part is that for most of us, this is what our entire day looks like. We compromise on what our bodies require the most to keep going – meal time! We’re so caught up between tight schedules, and stringent deadlines that even eating a meal in peace has now become a luxury. Needless to say, the consequences of these rushed meals aren’t great and impact our minds and bodies alike.
If you have been picturing yourself through all of this, well, it’s time to stop, think, and act. A great way out is practicing mindfulness while eating. Mindful eating practices can help you focus on your food so that your body is aware of every morsel that goes into it. This promotes healthy eating behavior, and cuts down on unhealthy eating patterns too.
What is Mindfulness During Meals?
The whole purpose of mindful eating is an exercise to help you increase awareness about feelings, thoughts, and even physical sensations at any given moment. So when you’re eating mindfully, you actually slow down and enjoy everything on your plate to your heart’s content. This increases awareness of the food that you’re consuming in the present moment.
Why is Mindful Eating Important?
Apart from the rushed meals we mentioned before, we have another problem that’s pretty common – multitasking while eating meals. We do not eat our meals in peace but rather prefer to have them while binging on Our favorite shows on Netflix, catching up with that football match on TV, or simply scrolling through Instagram on our smartphones. A lot of us even have meals at our work desks, as it’s convenient and saves us time.
The impact of unhealthy eating patterns results in a whole range of problems, which include overeating, stress eating, or binging on junk food at odd times throughout the day. Indulgence once in a while is fine, but when something becomes a pattern you cannot get rid of, you cannot just dismiss it and take it lightly.
What are the Benefits of Mindful Eating?
Mindful eating comes with a whole bunch of benefits too. Let’s have a look at them:
Healthy Eating Habits
Mindful eating helps you build healthy eating habits, as you’re less distracted while having your meals. Instead, your entire focus is on your food and the signals (of hunger or satiety) that your body gives you. This helps you learn to eat only as much as you require.
As you avoid mindless eating, overeating is no longer a regular affair. Instead, as you consciously have your meals, you can maintain a healthy body weight even without needing to maintain the calorie count of all that you consume throughout the day.
Constantly filling our stomachs with large quantities of food results in different digestive ailments such as indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome, and even constipation. However, mindful eating can help combat all these ailments too!
Watching what you eat makes you more aware of how your food affects your body. With mindfulness during meals, you’re careful with your food, replacing the junk with healthier, more nutritious options. Post meals, you’re sure to feel agile and energetic rather than bloated and sluggish.
We’ve told you everything you need to know about mindfulness during meals. Start off with keeping aside all your devices during meals. Then, it’s just you and your plate full of nutritious food – everything else can wait for the next 20-25 minutes you’ll be spending with your meal. After that, you’re sure to notice the positive effects of mindful eating, and in no time, you’ll find yourself advocating for mindful eating too!