How to eat more mindfully and other non-food ways to help you eat better
It may sound funny, but there are ways to help you eat better that don’t involve food. Here are a few of my favorites that I share with my clients.
Tune in to your hunger. There are a lot of reasons why we eat. Celebrations, visual cues (such as donuts in the office lounge), emotional reasons (stress, comfort), and routines (it’s snack ‘oclock) are some of the main ones. To break the cycle, practice tuning into your own signals so that you can learn to eat when you’re hungry and put your fork down when you’re comfortably full.
Make snacks and meals more memorable. When we eat on the fly, at our desks, or with other distractions, it’s easier to override our fullness signals. Also, our brains don’t do as good of a job recalling that we’ve eaten. Both of these prime us up to overeat. It’s impossible to limit all distractions when eating, but as often as possible, use a plate, cup, bowl, napkin, paper towel, or any other food holder to help jog your memory. Even if you’re just having a handful of nuts or a granola bar, stick it on something and put it down from time to time.
Find ways to be more optimistic. Research shows that optimistic people are healthier eaters, and one way to increase optimism and overall wellbeing is to practice gratitude. This doesn’t need to get complicated or time consuming. It can be as easy as saying thanks to someone who holds the door open for you or making a mental note when the traffic gods make your morning commute a little easier.
Thanks for reading!