Today I’m held captive to staccato laughter and must begin with small side bar. I was derailed from naming this blog post Mindful Munching because something in my goofy spirit and my girly snickering just couldn’t allow it. I literally couldn’t even write the first few sentences without COL, cackling out loud. (take that teenagers) I kept typing the words, “do you like to munch? and are you a midnight muncher?,” but I couldn’t keep a straight face? I’m blushing. What’s the matter with me?
Anyway…I will attempt to contain myself and act like decent mature adult. Like I said yesterday…adulting is so overrated! ←←Click here in case you missed yesterday’s inspiriting student testimonial.
Okay beautiful people, it’s time to unpack some Abercrombie and FITness pointers for purposeful snacking and eating. These are not new notions but they are helpful when it comes to mindless chowing which can lead to over eating. Remember, I stand tall by a motto which is not eating leads to over eating! Take one or all of these tips and line them up in your savvy snacking tool belt.
Bring food to the table! Sitting on the couch in front of the TV can cause many bad habits and mindless eating. It’s an easy trap to slip into causing numb hand to mouth action. I usually catch Mr. Chicken Fry in the opposite perdicament. He is way to high strung to even call the squat. I watch as he stands at the kitchen counter shoveling loads of food on to his fork. Both scenarios can cause you to eat way to fast or the auto pilot mechanism of unnecessary intake because of the distractions.
Get rid of distractions. Eating while surfing or browsing the internet is an emotional risk if you ask me! Let’s say for example you are eating and checking email. Perhaps you stumble upon a disturbing work email or take a family drama phone call. Statistically, you are more likely to feed your anger or drama with food. The reverse could also happen, you might be so charged up that you stop eating completely. This may cause over eating on the back-end. No pun intended!
Take a breath. Are you a fast eater? GUILTY! I eat way to fast and I blame it all on Mr. Chicken Fry. He basically inhales his food therefore when he is done he’s done and ready to go. The truth is we both eat fast. Most of the time I look up and to find a glass full of untouched water and my meal is gone. I didn’t bother to take a swig much less a breath. Try taking a bite of food, a big inhale followed by a gulp of water to wash it down!
How hungry are you? Access your level of hunger. Are you hungry like the wolf or do you just want to nibble like a bird? If you’re in starvation mode, by all means make a decent plate, sit at the table and eat see where you land. However, if you are not ravenous, make a snack and mozey along until your next feeding.
Observe the meal. If you have in fact made a plate, check out the color, aroma and the textures. Take in a visual of the food and access what’s about to go down. Again, no pun intended. Take a second to be thankful for a warm meal and the variety of protein, vegtables and whole grain earthy carb.
Take one bite and make mental awareness. Is your food cold? Is the food too hot? Is the food seasoned to your liking? Do you need to add some spice or flavor? If it doesn’t taste good don’t eat it. You are not a prisoner to the food before you. You might need to reheat the rice or let the grilled fajitas cool down.
Consciously put the fork down between each bite. This is a biggie and will also do wonders for digestion. It’s right up there with breathing and swallowing water in between each bite. This step makes a big impact on your brain and stomach making a connection. The idea of feeling full and the reality of being full don’t alwys happen simotaneously. Give it time by slowing the roll and laying down the utensils.
When I eat a meal at home, unless it’s cereal, I only use chop sticks. Eating with chop sticks slows me down. It’s hard to get big bites with a pair of skinny sticks. This practice has forces me to take smaller bites in turn causing slower eating habits.
Some of us are just more motor mouthy than others. We can’t help it We get distracted in deep conversations with gal pals or our special someone and before we know it, we have plowed through our whole dinner. We gorged on a giant plate of pasta during a high emotional tell all session. Heck, we weren’t even that hungry but we get so busy talking and chewing and listening that we over eat.
Drinking and driving is a big problem and no…I’m not referencing alcohol. Hopefully we are all past that and smarter now. What I mean is, are you a busy autopilot driver who forgets to eat real food? Maybe you are so busy shuttling kids, work and errands that you forget to eat. You sip from your tall Yeti all day super proud that you’re hydrating. Yet in actuality you’re doing more harm by not eating some form of protein. Try packing some boiled eggs, nuts, turkey roll up, or a lettuce wrap! This also goes for all of you road warriors on the travel scene.
A nibble here and there might not really fill you up. If your mind isn’t focused on eating your more likely to mindless munch out. What happens is you miss out on the internal hunger cue and eat more than your body actually needs. Empty calories.
Don’t munch just to munch because someone told you the food is healthy. If you hate cold raw carrots then don’t eat them. If you abhor cooked or grilled asparagus don’t eat it just because you think it’s a green healthy vegetable. Find nutricous foods that are pleasing to your palate. Even my Mr. Chicken Fry has bumped up his game. He actually eats green beans, corn, potatoes, okra, tomatoes, avocado and in some cases peas and carrots. He’s such a matrue eater now! What I’m trying to say is that i’s perfect acceptable to be a choosy vegtable snob.
The moral of this post is to ditch the mealtime screen time. It takes away from the experience of tasting the food. What a classic notion….actually taking time to taste the food! Less distractions so you can focus on the pleasure and privledge of eating. Turn off the tube and focus on the food. Register each bite and mouthful with purpose.
Don’t forget to say grace! Offer up thanks for the food you are about to chew! Present your thanks to the Creator for HIS blessings all the prep work of those who cooked or prepared the meal before you.
Rubba dub dub…now go get some grub!