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Adopt Mindful Eating Habits

Adopt Mindful Eating Habits

What is a mindful eating habit? Does it mean you don’t allow yourself to eat certain things or to eat less of it? The best way to define mindful eating is to define what mindless eating is.


You’ve likely experienced mindless eating when watching a football game while eating pizza in front of the television. All of a sudden, the pizza (and a couple of drinks) is gone and you don’t remember eating it.


Or – you ate your lunch at work in front of the computer and at the end of the day, you don’t remember what you ate or when. Those are mindless eating examples. Now, you’ll learn about mindful eating and how it can help you become healthier and lose unwanted pounds.


Intentions of Mindful Eating


Developing healthy eating habits and weight loss are the true intentions of mindful eating. A constant awareness of your present state of hunger and how food is affecting your body (is it healthy or unhealthy?) are part of the reasons why mindful eating can make you successful in all things involving food.


Knowing about your own hunger cues to see if you’re still hungry – or simply want more to eat because it tastes good or you’re used to being fuller – is one method of using mindful eating as a weight loss tool.


Mindful eating also addresses the attention of enjoying the food you consume. You’ll learn what your non-hunger cues are for eating and also about your hunger cues which alert you to eat nourishing foods which will alleviate your hunger and be good and healthy for your body.


Using mindful eating techniques, you’ll learn how to deal with the discomfort you might experience from smaller portions and how to know if you’re eating from habit or actual hunger.


There is a scale you can use to measure your hunger cues. If your hunger level is at a 10, you’re miserably stuffed – whereas a 0 means that you’re at starvation. Mindful eating advocates that you should only eat when your hunger level hits a 4 and stop when you reach a 6. It’s something to keep in mind when planning your meals for the most effectiveness.


Another intention of mindful eating is to choose other avenues other than eating to meet your emotional and physical needs. Many of us eat based on emotional turmoil and that leads to overeating and weight gain.


Learning to choose your meals based on both enjoyment and nourishment value is a big part of mindful eating. When you learn to do this, you’re going to be more satisfied with your choices and get the most in nutritional value from the foods you choose.


Another intention of mindful eating is to provide you with the energy you need to live the life you visualize. Imagine having the energy you need to achieve the goals and create the physique you desire.


Mindful eating can provide answers to all of these intentions – and more. Finally, you’ll be able to develop a healthy relationship with food and eating. No longer will you eat to satisfy emotional needs, but you’ll be more mindful about eating to provide your body with nutrition and energy it needs to function properly.


Questions and Answers to Help Your Mindful Eating Journey


Can you go back for seconds if you’re still hungry? How can mindful eating help you break old habits of eating for pleasure and based on emotions? Mindful eating is a method of consuming food where you’re always in the present moment.


At first, you may analyze your every thought and feeling. Am I really hungry? What do I really want to eat? Mindful eating techniques will teach you how to recognize hunger cues and get rid of old habits which don’t work for you anymore – replacing them with good habits that do work.


Many of us are unhealthy and overweight because we stuff our faces with fast food and food that contains no nutrients. We become addicted to the rush that fatty and fried foods give us, so we eat those foods mindlessly as a way to cope with constant hunger rather than choosing healthy foods that would really help.


Other questions that people have when thinking about trying mindful eating techniques include:


How do I get over cravings for fatty foods?


It may take a while to get over your cravings, but by replacing those unhealthy foods with foods that are much more filling and nutritious for your body, you’ll find that your system will adjust and you’ll feel better with your new choices.


How do I find time for preparing healthy meals?


With mindful eating techniques, you’ll learn that healthy meals can be prepared and enjoyed without compromising on your valuable time and efforts. Slow cookers, blenders and steamers are just a few of the mindful eating cooking methods which can be used to save time.


At what point do I know to stop eating?


There is a scale used for pain measurement which can also be used for measuring your hunger. The scale is based on 1 through 10 –10 being the point where you’re really stuffed and 1 being the point that you think you’re starving. Take a minute to analyze your hunger point before eating more.


How do I overcome wanting to enjoy my meals while watching my favorite television shows?


Make it a point to spiff up your dining table and make it inviting for you and your family. Soft music in the background and flowers on the table can go a long way in making it an inviting and peaceful place to enjoy your meals.


How do I avoid social overeating?


If you’re at a restaurant or someone’s house, choose items from the menu or table that are low in calorie. If that’s not an option, eat a small portion – or ask for a doggie bag to take some home.


If you get stuck on a mindful eating question, just use your common sense and hunger cues to lead you on the path you need to take. Don’t fret if you indulge in “mindless” eating once in a while. It’s difficult to stop eating while watching television or at your desk and you may not have a choice on busy days.


Begin with a day a week where you practice the art of mindful eating and use the other days to practice and learn. Keep nutrition and true hunger at the center of your mindful eating journey and you’ll eventually notice the difference.


Replacing Mindless Eating Habits with Mindful Eating Habits


It’s helpful to use what is known as the “stepladder” approach to mindful eating until it’s a true part of your daily routine. You may want to begin with replacing a simple habit such as snacking on unhealthy foods with the habit of snacking on healthier ones.


You won’t become a mindful eater overnight and replace all your bad eating habits with good ones, but you can begin to be present in mind, body and spirit when you do make choices about the foods you’re going to consume.


Taking the process slow will have greater chances of it sticking and your accomplishments will multiply until the mindful eating habits become a part of your daily routing just like brushing your teeth.


There are some easy and effortless ways you can begin to replace bad, old eating habits with good and nutritious ones. One way is to carefully plan your meals for the week.


Shopping for and stocking up on all the ingredients you’ll need for your snacks and meals will give you a head start on developing newer and healthier habits and getting rid of the old ones.


Be aware of every morsel of food you put in your mouth and also how it’s prepared. After you place the food on a plate, take small bites and savor each mouthful, chewing carefully before swallowing.


If you ordinarily eat too fast, practice a slower method by putting your knife and fork down between bites. Other methods include using chopsticks and only putting on your plate what you plan to consume.


Keep your mental attitude positive. Your mental attitude has everything to do with your enthusiasm and consumption of food. If you’re nervous or upset, you may consume more than planned. Before a meal, make an attempt to become calm and serene so your meal and the digestion process will proceed smoothly.


If you’ve dieted to lose weight most of your life, try dieting to get healthy. Make you goal that of being and obtaining the best body possible. That will help you overcome your obsession with weight loss and get you to be more mindful of what you’re eating that will help improve and maintain your health.


Make Dieting a Thing of the Past


By making mindful eating part of your daily routine, you won’t think of yourself as “on a diet” anymore. Rather, you’ll be striving to get the most out of your food without causing problems in other areas of your life.


Mindful eating isn’t dieting. It’s a way of life that uses your mind and intuitive skills to develop a healthy relationship with food and your mind and body. Diets of the past only use external methods such as counting calories and weight scales, whereas mindful eating focuses on your own self and internal cues of hunger.


Problems such as binging are often solved with mindful eating techniques because you learn to recognize hunger cues and you’ll also be eating enough good food to satisfy your mind and body.


Healthy living promotes a spiritual and intellectual outlook on food that isn’t at all like the old dieting methods of starving yourself by taking a militaristic stance on what and how you dine.


Using mindful eating techniques will teach you how to eat when you’re hungry and stop eating when you’re satisfied. You’ll also learn to love the taste of healthy foods and avoid the taste of unhealthy foods because of how they make you feel.


Social overeating becomes a thing of the past because you’ll learn how to eat with your mind rather than urges when you’re socializing. As a result, you’ll begin to enjoy your eating experiences more and crave less.


You’ll also begin to enjoy life more because you will become more present in other areas of your life such as relationships and work. Your eating times will be events to look forward to rather than dread and you’ll notice how your food intake affects your energy levels during the day.


Through the act of mindful eating, you’ll feel more like exercising and preparing healthy meals that both you and your family and friends will enjoy. You may not ever become a gourmet chef, but you can learn to appreciate the various ingredients that go into making a tasty meal.


Dos and Don’ts of Mindful Eating


There are a few hard and fast rules that you should always think about when adopting mindful eating techniques. One is to begin small – perhaps with a snack during the day. Make it a snack that you choose for its health benefits and taste.


Don’t multitask when you’re eating. It may not always be possible, but attempt to set aside one meal during the week where you set the table and prepare a nutritious meal. Block out all distractions and simply enjoy the food and peace of the meal.


Eat at a table rather than in your bed or in front of the television set or computer. Only then will you be able to give your food the attention it needs to make an impact on your eating habits.


Pay attention to your meal. Notice the color, texture and all aspects of how it looks and tastes. Make your meals beautiful by using herbs, spices and garnishes that will set it apart from the usual fare.


Take small bites and chew your food well. You’ll be surprised how important this is to aid digestion and help you focus on the delicious sensations that the food provides. Also, pay attention to the aroma and bitterness or sweetness that you taste and smell.


Sharing a meal with loved ones is an important part of mindful eating. In today’s world, it can be challenging to get everyone together for a meal at home, but try incorporating at least one day per week for eating a meal together and talk and share your memories of the day – and the delicious meal you’ve prepared.


You don’t have to prepare huge meals, but do purchase the best ingredients you can. Fresh fruits and vegetables go much farther in taste than processed ones. You’ll enjoy it more and be much more satisfied at the end of the meal.


When you embark on a journey of mindful eating, you’ll be creating a lifestyle for yourself that’s simple and fun and makes any eating experience worthwhile and enjoyable.

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