3 Ways to Practice Mindful Eating

3 Ways to Practice Mindful Eating

How many times have you flopped onto the couch in front of the television with a plate of food, or wolfed something down just because it’s there? We’re looking at you, Halloween candy…

With the onset of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years catching up with us soon in Nashville, I thought I would take a pause on the dermatology-related content to talk about something else that is still close to my heart - wellness and nutrition. Over the next two blogs, I’m introducing something you may not have heard about before: mindful eating. Even though I am a dermatologist, the question around what to eat always comes up with my Nashville patients - but not necessarily how to eat, which is equally important. By bringing some awareness back to your mind and body while eating, you will feel entirely different.

Here are three ways I would recommend practicing mindful eating:

1. Make sure your brain and body are on the same page.

There might be a lot more on your plate than you expected, but do you feel full? If so, make sure you stop. Eating beyond feeling very full and ignoring your body’s signals to slow down is crucial, and one of the best ways we can get our mind and body to communicate what we really need for nutrition. The body actually sends its satiation signal about 20 minutes after the brain, which is why we often unconsciously overeat. But, if we slow down, you can give your body a chance to catch up to your brain and hear the signals to eat the right amount.

Try: Chewing each bite 25 times or more, and setting your fork down between bites.

2. When you feel hungry, eat.

We all tend to stress eat, or reach for a bag of chips when we’ve had a bad day or just feeling bored in Nashville. If your stomach is growling, your energy is low or you’re feeling lightheaded, those are likely your personal hunger signals. Contrary to what most may believe, we usually eat when our mind tells us to, rather than our bodies.

Try: Taking note of your body’s hunger signals and separating them from your emotional hunger triggers.

3. Try eating in healthy environments.

If your eating patterns are random and mindless, it prevents you from developing healthy  environmental cues about what and how much to eat, and wires our brains for new cues for eating that not always ideal - do you really want to create a habit to eat every time you get in the car?

Try: Sitting down at a table, not eating food out of a container and eating more with others.

Remember this: whenever food is around, we’re likely to eat it! By being conscious of your mind and body’s patterns and signals, you can develop a healthier relationship between yourself and your food. Life sure is busy in Nashville, but there is always time to slow down and nourish yourself with thought and care.

Are you worried about whether your diet is affecting your skin? Visit us at Skin Solutions Dermatology in Nashville, Franklin, Columbia, Smyrna, Hendersonville or Pulaski to chat with our amazing team of dermatology specialists! Take advantage of our online booking system and book an appointment today.

Source: Mindful

Related Buzz: What Is The Real Cost of Food?, Does Organic Mean ‘Safe’?

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Dr Pena

About The Author

Dr. Pena is a Board-Certified Medical Dermatologist, Mohs skin cancer surgeon, and cosmetic dermatologist. Her mission is to educate the diverse patient populations she serves, and their communities, on the importance of skin care in decreasing the risk of skin cancer and minimizing the early signs of aging. She founded Skin Solutions Dermatology with numerous clinics in Nashville, Tennessee and surrounding Middle Tennessee.

Dr. Julia Pena, MD