Healthy Eating: 7 Simple Steps That Can Help You Eat Mindfully
Eating mindfully is crucial for your body weight as well as overall health. Here are a few tips that can help you eat mindfully.
Mindful eating can help you maintain a healthy weight
- Chew your food properly for better digestion
- Avoid distractions like mobile phones while eating
- Know you portion size to avoid overeating
As rightly said "Mindful eating is about awareness and appreciation that nourishes not only our body but also our spirit and opens the door to appreciating life" We shall always emphasize on mindful eating and this can be easily obtained by following some basic principles. This is the simplest habit which can be practiced easily with adoption of few changes. Here are some of these.
Let's discuss six simple steps to eat mindfully:
1. Keeping gaps between meals:
Try to eat meals in a 10 hour window and try to fast for the remaining hours of the day. Eating small frequent meals during the window is a good choice. This practice is especially beneficial for the people suffering from type -2 diabetes, cardio vascular diseases, and inflammatory diseases.
2. Hydration is the key:
Sometimes we feel that we are hungry but in actual it is related to dehydration. So before you plan to consume a chocolate just have a glass of water; it will keep body systems chugging around.
3. Know your portions:
Sharing is caring, if the portion of the dish is large, do share. This is one practice that how you can control your portion size and hence the extra calories. You should choose the portions consciously.
4. When you are eating, just eat:
Try to concentrate on food and food alone when you are eating. Distraction by gadgets etc. leads to unmindful eating. When you are eating your meals, taste it and feel it. Let the stomach extract the maximum benefits from it in form of nutrients. If the concentration would be elsewhere the nutrient absorption is affected and the food you are eating is wasted. The digestive juices also work well on food which is consciously and happily consumed.
5. Chewing, chewing and chewing:
Please chew your food properly. It takes 20 minutes by brain to respond to increased blood glucose levels (due to food) and get an "I'm full" message. Respond to the cues that body is giving. If you will eat fast, you will end up eating much more. Follow a 20-20 rule; try chewing the food at least 20 times until it becomes liquid. This would lead to better digestion as well.
6. Eat a happy diet
"A healthy outside starts from the inside" Robert Urich. We can attain good health by eating nutrient rich food is very much known. Food has a power to generate happiness and if food is consumed in a sad state of mind, the nutrient bioavailability is much affected in a negative manner. Connect with the senses when you eat. So enjoy the meal time and be grateful.
7. A mindful shopping list:
As a human nature if we don't have something readily available, we don't want it later. So be mindful what you are buying, avoid buying processed foods, bakery products and other unhealthy foods. If you won't have it at home, you would not eat it. A very simple but effective method to mindful eating.
So we now rightly understand how simply we can inculcate mindful eating in our daily lives. Eating healthy foods fills your body with energy and nutrients. So gear up and indulge yourself in very effective mindful eating.
(Vandita Jain is Delhi-based nutritionist, Diabetes educator and founder of Diet Perfact)
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