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November 8, 2020

5 reasons it is important to eat mindfully

You hear it everywhere “eat mindfully” - what does that mean and why is it important?

There are several reasons how eating slowly and mindfully can help with your nutrition goals!

  1. You’ll Eat Less.
  2. For many people, eating fast entails eating more. Think about it! Does that ring true for you?
  3.  Eating slower increases fullness and reduces caloric intake. Additionally, the more you slow down, the fewer calories you’ll consume
  4. Here’s why: it takes twenty minutes for satiety signs (satiety hormones) to get from your stomach to your brain.
  5. What is satiety? The feeling of being full! The two hormones most closely associated with energy homeostasis leading to sensations of appetite and satiety are ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin always cracks me up – think “Ghrelin makes you growl!” and it is the hormone that says “I’m Hungry” to your brain.  #sciencenerd
  6. When you eat slower, you will have consumed less by the time your brain receives your stomach’s cues (hormones) for fullness. At that time, your brain instinctively directs you to stop eating.
  7. 2.      You’ll Snack Less and Avoid Bingeing Later.
  8. Even if you eat slower, you’ll be just as fulfilled with less food as you would with more food. When you feel fulfilled, you are less likely to compensate for eating less by snacking later or eating more at the next meal.
  9. 3.      You’ll Enjoy More.
  10. When you eat slower and pay close attention, your senses get more time to expand your consciousness of the flavor, aroma, and texture of food. This consecutively offers more overall satisfaction thereby letting you end eating sooner.
  11. 4.      You’ll Digest Better.
  12. When you eat slower, you’ll chew your food better. This brings about better digestion. Digestion actually starts in the mouth, so chewing slowly helps break your food down into simpler nutrients that can be used by the cells. Research has shown that the longer you take to chew specific foods (almonds for example,) the more you intensify the bioavailability of certain nutrients so your body absorbs more of them.
  13. 5.      You’ll Feel Better.
  14. Food can influence your mood. When you spend twenty minutes eating slowly and mindfully—and enjoying a meal—you’ll feel better and perform better.
  15. What are some ways you can help remember to eat slowly and mindfully? 
  16. -Put your fork down between each bite or take a sip of water
  17. -Turn off distractions, like the TV or cell phone
  18. -Set aside time to eat and establish a calm eating environment - easier said than done right?! 
  19. -Take small bites and pay attention to the textures and flavors
  20. -Finish chewing and swallowing before you put more on your fork
  22. Ultimately, the idea is to cultivate a healthy relationship with food. Practice mindful eating. Develop awareness, curiosity, and a bit of awareness about your relationship with food.

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