Eating Mindfully

by Eliana Lakritz MS RD LDN, Clinical Dietitian, Baystate Noble Hospital

Eliana Lakritz MS RD LDN, Clinical Dietitian, Baystate Noble Hospital (WNG file photo)

These days, it’s easy to find yourself eating in front of the television, with a smart phone in hand, or while engaging in another activity. Mindless eating behavior is defined as lack of attention to the process of eating. It can result in excessive eating, ignoring hunger cues, eating too fast, and ultimately, weight gain. By distracting ourselves during meal times, we often disregard the pleasures of eating, including the smells, textures, and tastes that food provokes. Becoming more mindful while eating can help establish a healthier relationship with food. This can in turn promote weight management. Below are some behavioral techniques to help you practice mindful eating.

  1. Savor your food. When you put a bite of food in your mouth, make sure to savor eachflavor. Consider the texture of the food as well. Chew slowly, paying full attention to the food before you swallow. This will help you to eat more slowly while you discover characteristics about the food you may have missed by eating too quickly. Eating more slowly will also allow your satiety cues to kick in before you overeat.
  2. Silence your electronics. Eliminate distracting phones or T.V. shows so that you can truly give full attention to your meal and the people around you. Having dinner with friends or family can make eating a more pleasurable experience.
  3. Appreciate your food. Consider where the food on your plate comes from, how it was made, and what it contains. This will help you appreciate the food on your plate and may motivate you to make healthy food choices.

If you are interested in learning more about nutrition counseling sessions with a registered dietitian at Baystate Noble Hospital, please call 413-568-2811 ex: 5671 for more information.

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