Want to eat better, move more, stress less and lose weight? Good news, the latest nutrition research is saying that the best way by lose weight is to eat lots of sugar filled candy, a loaf of bread every day and eliminate all fruits and vegetables.
The truth is, the secret to feeling better, living your best life and being the best version of yourself is to implement lifestyle changes that feel authentic to you and are easy to maintain. So, start by asking yourself these three crucial questions:
What behavior do I want to create?
Am I distracted when I eat?
Where does my mind go during mealtimes?
Reflecting on the answers to these questions will allow you to start paying close attention to your body - widening your understanding of yourself, giving you the kind of insight needed to change your behavior. At the core of healthy eating habits is understanding the connection between food and well-being. Scientists believe that diets that are high in fruits, vegetables, unprocessed grains, and seafood are the most beneficial for your health. Studies show that becoming aware of the choices, options, and solutions can help you learn to be aware of your body's physical hunger so when it comes to overeating, it’s not the food you want, it’s the memory you have created around it.
Let’s dig into that with this simple example: You eat a certain food, something sweet for example, and you really like it the first time. Then you start to crave it because your mind and body think “this food made me feel happy last time.” But then, the next time you pick it up, it doesn’t taste as good, and you feel disappointed. You had built that food up so much in your mind and it didn’t deliver, so you decide that you are never going to eat that again and declare that tomorrow you are going on a diet. Shortly after that declaration you end up eating three bags of chips and an entire cake because this experience is now not just about the food, but rather it feels more like saying goodbye to a dear friend and you’re just trying to make the most out of the time you have left together.
This is what mindful eating is all about. Mindfulness means paying attention to the present moment. When you are mindful, you are not rushing or multitasking. Rather, you are calm and focused. Not only does this help you make better eating choices, but it also supports you in every other aspect of your life.
François de la Rochefoucauld said that “To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art.” Give yourself the time to eat slowly and focus on colors, textures, flavors, and aromas. This will help you enjoy the overall experience. And remember, be kind and patient with yourself. Not everything goes according to plan and changing your eating habits will require effort.
I’ll leave you with this quote from Virginia Woolf, “One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.”