6 steps to the Buddhist practice of mindful eating
Based on the Buddhist practice of mindfulness, mindful eating is a technique that works to help you enjoy your food while taking the time to appreciate it. Our hectic lifestyles mean that if we do eat lunch at all, it’s usually at our desk, during a meeting, or on the move.
Simply setting aside some dedicated time to eat three times a day has been found to improve mood, digestion and even help to reduce anxiety levels. Opposite you will find six simple actions that will help you to slow down and enjoy your food more. Use one, use them all, but trust us: you won’t regret it.
1. Engage your senses
Before tucking in, note the different scents and colours on your plate. Take a bite and consider the texture, taste and temperature of the food
2. Take your time
Chew your food thoroughly. Chewing each mouthful 20-40 times allows the gut to extract the greatest amount of nutrients possible
3. Listen for your cue
Try to eat when you start to feel hungry rather than when you’re ravenous, then stop eating when you are full as this will allow for normal digestion
4. Appreciate it
Once you sit down to eat, take a minute to appreciate the food in front of you, acknowledging how it will fuel your body until your next meal
5. Drop the cutlery
Put down your knife and fork between bites to force yourself to eat more slowly, allowing you to enjoy the meal, chew more and savour every bite
6. Food for thought
Take a moment to look at your plate and consider how the food makes you feel. Ask if it’s healthy and nutritious, or bland and unexciting