Now that I am travelling solo I have a lot of time to observe the people around me in the different food joints I visit. I’ve noticed that people in general -especially in the States- have the tendency to eat very fast. They rush through the day and do the same with their food. Instead of sitting down and enjoying a meal, they gobble it down as fast as possible to move on with their busy schedule. Hey, I know the hustle is real over here but it’s still very important to take a moment to sit down and eat your meal properly.
Eventhough it’s very important to be aware of what we eat, being aware of the how we consume our food is equally important. Conscious eating also means being present in the moment while eating a meal. We tend to underestimate the importance of chewing our food properly and to really focus on our food.
I’ll be honest with you; I catch myself looking on my phone a lot while I’m eating and that’s something I am still working on. The chewing part is something I have taught myself by taking my time to chew my food properly. Nowadays I am usually the last one to finish my meal when I’m amongst people because I’ve noticed that my body really benefits from eating slowly and thoroughly. You need to give your brain the time to catch up with your body.
Benefits of slow eating:
- Better digestion;
- Greater satisfaction with your meal;
- Better hydration;
- You’ll eat less, which can help you lose weight;
- Increases your feeling of fullnes.
Tips to eat slower:
- At first try to focus as much as possible on your meal by creating a quiet atmosphere;
- Put away your phone and turn the TV off;
- Eat outside or where you have less (digital) distractions;
- Put your fork/spoon down between bites and focus on your chewing;
- If you’re eating in company of others, there is no shame in being quiet and taking a minute to concentrate on your meal;
- Never drink while your eating; this slows down your digestion;
- Try to count the times you chew until you feel it’s smooth enough to swallow. If you do it often enough it will become a habit and you’ll chew longer without even having to count (the amount depends on the food you’re eating).
I still put these tips to practice everyday since it’s sometimes difficult to just focus on your eating. But I truly believe that this is an ongoing process and it has helped me to maintain my weight and improved my metabolism. If you keep doing it, it will eventually become more of a habit than a struggle.
Lots of love,