Interested in losing weight? The simple act of being present could help you drop those extra pounds.
Hardly anyone would argue that being more present in your life, body, and mind, or with your family and friends creates a healthier you and more solid relationships with those closest to you.
Being present with your food does exactly the same thing. By eating your food more mindfully, you are creating a relaxation response in the body which helps you to digest and assimilate this food much more easily. This rest & digest mode ultimately creates a healthier you because you’ll prime your metabolism to work efficiently and you’ll glean more nutrients from your food. You’ll also have a better relationship with your food because you’ll savor and appreciate it more not only for its taste but also for what it can do for you.
The opposite would be gobbling your food down mindlessly to the point where you don’t even taste what you’re eating, and it’s gone within minutes and sometimes even seconds. Eating in this manner creates a stress response in the body which effectively shuts down your digestion and increases the release of cortisol in your body. This ultimately causes you to store your food as fat.
So be more present with your food at every meal, snack, or even bite. Sloooow down with your food. This means using all of your senses. First smell and then really look at how appetizing your food is (or isn’t) to you. (If it isn’t, maybe it’s time to upgrade.) Take a bite and feel its texture on your tongue. Notice if it’s salty, sweet, sour, bitter, or pungent. Now begin to chew it and continue chewing until you have a liquidy paste in your mouth. Your saliva is the first defense in breaking down your food for digestion. Swallow and repeat.
By slowing down with your food, you allow yourself to truly savor and enjoy it. Rather than a whirlwind blur of inhaling, choking down, and wondering “What the heck did I just eat?!” moment, food and the act of eating becomes a pleasant, relaxing and nourishing experience.