By Ann Musico
Life is busy for everyone, whether you are a stay-at-home mom or the CEO of a corporation. So many of us eat on the go. We grab a burger and fries from the drive through, scarfing it down in the car or we stand at the kitchen counter bolting down our meal. Even something healthy like a smoothie can be gulped in the car on the way to work. Honestly you may be thinking – so what? What does this have to do with weight loss? As long as I’m not eating too many calories, what difference does it make?
More than you may have imagined. First of all, studies show that eating fast blocks the hormones that signal you are full and satisfied and lead to overeating. But there is another reason I want to focus on.
When you inhale your food, rather than treating it as a meal that you are aware of, and enjoy, savoring how it looks, smells and tastes, you will find that even though you may feel full physically, not long after you are searching the refrigerator for something else to eat! You see, your cells are starving and sending the message that they still need nourishment. They always say you eat with your eyes first – and there’s a lot of truth to that!
You can overeat and be obese yet in fact still be malnourished at the cellular level and many people are. This is part of the reason why. Choosing calorie-dense foods with little nutritional value is the other reason. But even if you eat healthy food in this mindless way, you won’t get the full nutritional value.
You really have two brains – one in your head and one in your digestive tract! You may think you can fool the one in your gut, but you can’t! If your brain doesn’t fully experience the taste, smell, texture, pleasure and satisfaction from your meals, it interprets that missed experience as hunger! Even if you just filled your belly!
So as often as possible, sit down at the table, pay attention to the food, enjoy it, savor it and eat it slowly and mindfully. Even if it is a smoothie – savor the creaminess, flavor and aroma. Beginning the meal with a prayer of thanks is a perfect way to slow down and be intentional about fully experiencing your meal. Not only will you improve your digestion, you will also find losing weight becomes easier – and much more enjoyable!
“I encourage you to pay attention to how you eat the majority of your meals: mindfully or mindlessly.”
– Ann Musico is a holistic health coach who helps women, at every age, to exemplify lives of vibrant health and wholeness – spirit, soul and body. Her mission is to show women how to adopt a healthy lifestyle in a way that is simple and achievable, empowering them to take responsibility for their own health in order to be a positive influence on their families. You can visit her website at threedimensionalvitality.com