Theresa (Tracy) Garrett
Registered Dietitian Nutritionist & Certified Diabetes Educator
Our fast-paced world bombards us with distractions, which can make it difficult to focus on one thing at a time, like eating. “Mindful eating,” aims to refocus our attention on the experience of eating and enjoying our food.
Most of us don’t pay enough attention to what we’re eating, how much we’re consuming, or to the tastes, smells, thoughts, and feelings associated with food. We tend to wolf it down, overeat and move on to the next distraction. Eating is often a mindless act.
When we eat slowly and intentionally, we’re more likely to notice when we’re full, to digest our food more easily and to notice flavors, smells and textures we might otherwise miss. An added benefit – when we focus on how we eat, we tend to make healthier food choices.
Here are a few bite-size tips to help you eat mindfully:
- Thoroughly chew your food, at least 25 bites per chew
- Turn off all electronic devices (phones, TVs, computers) when you eat
- Use smaller utensils, which will force you to take smaller bites. Put the utensil down after each bite and pause
- Sip on water between bites
- Savor the flavors and related experiences
Life is too short to eat good food mindlessly. Think about it.
Tracy Garrett is a registered dietitian nutritionist and certified diabetes educator at the Sun Health Center for Health & Wellbeing. For more information, call 623-832-WELL (9355) or go to sunhealthwewellbeing.org.
(Originally published July 13, 2017; last updated Jan. 6, 2019.)