How to Practice Mindful Eating Over Christmas and Long Term!
There are sweets everywhere! EVERYWHERE! Every shop you go into has a box of some sort if sweet opened on the counter offering you some chocolate covered bite to indulge in! But all you are thinking of is calories, weight gain and battling with that voice in your head saying you know you want one! The temptation at Christmas time is huge! Learning how to eat mindfully can be beneficial at his time of year and always....Here are my top tips!
The main purpose of mindful eating is to change your relationship with food. Mindful eating is anything but a “diet” — in fact, it’s basically the opposite! Changing the way you eat (as opposed to just what foods you eat) is not just about developing discipline over your food preferences or necessarily losing weight. Instead, it’s really about mastering control over your mind. When using mindfulness around food, you’re present and aware of your appetite as it changes so you naturally control portions, choose healthy options and avoid emotionally eating.
Mindful eating has been used to treat a wide range of eating issues, from the inability to lose or gain weight to binge eating, eating disorders and everything in between — after all, there are so many unhealthy ways to lose weight.
✅✅✅✅✅5 Benefits of Mindful Eating
✅1. Better Control Over Your Weight
Like I mentioned earlier, mindful eating isn’t all about weight loss. The bottom line is that when you tune in to your body’s real needs and put an end to stressful or emotional eating, you naturally start improving your eating habits and likely the weight generally takes care of itself. That’s probably the best side effect of mindfulness around food!
Whether you’re trying to lose weight fast in an unhealthy way, overeating or under-eating, you have lost track of your real bodily cues to hunger and fullness. When you engage in mindless eating, you’re not meeting your body’s needs in some way — whether this means neglecting to eat a variety of healthy foods, eating in line with your real calorie needs or helping yourself cope with stress. It might mean that you eat portion sizes that are too large or processed and heavy “comfort foods” too often, which makes you gain weight. But for some people, not practicing mindfulness around food can also lead them to under-eat or just to eat the wrong types of things.
Either way, ignoring your body’s signals and need for healthy foods can result in weight fluctuations and health problems. Gaining unhealthy weight from overeating processed foods and failing to recognize it or deal with it in a positive way can lead to diabetes, obesity and heightened risk for various diseases. If you’re dieting, skipping breakfast or restricting certain foods beyond what’s healthy, you aren’t getting enough calories or nutrients, which is also harmful.
✅2. Less Stressing About Food
Stress can sabotage your diet and fitness goals. Everyone deals with emotional eating to some degree. That’s a part of being human! We all love to eat, enjoy different foods and find comfort in our favorite meals. But some people can manage the natural desire to eat delicious foods better than others, figuring out how to include occasional indulgences in an otherwise healthy eating plan.
Just eliminating emotional eating can impact your weight and health immensely because it stops a vicious cycle. Awareness can help you avoid stressful eating because it teaches you to respond to situations instead of just reacting to them. You recognize your cravings but don’t need to let them automatically control you or determine your decisions.
When you are more in tune with your emotions and how this drives your food choices, you stop eating when you are full and you eat more realistic portion sizes. Also, when you are more aware of stress’s impacts on you, you can stop automatic behaviors that lead to indulging — which for many people results in feelings of shame and then even more stress!
✅3. More Satisfaction from Eating
Mindful eating reconnects you with your body’s signals and senses. Mindful eating plugs you back in to your pleasure around foods without letting you lose control. While it might seem counterproductive to try and experience even more satisfaction from eating, the more we pay attention, the less food we usually need!
Think about it: When you pay attention to every second of eating something delicious, like warm chocolate cake, for example, usually a few bites do the trick. You recognize it tastes good, you realize how much you’ve already eaten and you remind yourself there’s always going to be another chance to have some again. But you don’t finish the whole plate because it’s in front of you, eat despite feeling full physically, feel guilty or tell yourself “this is my only chance to eat this.”
✅4. No Need to “Diet” Ever Again!
While weight loss can definitely happen as a result of mindful eating, the real goal is to focus on giving your body what it needs, remaining healthy and, of course, feeling good! When you eat just the right amount needed to make your body function, without giving it too much or too little, you naturally settle at a healthy weight without needing to follow any “diet plan.” Fad diets and one-size-fit-all plans usually don’t work long term because they don’t teach you to manage your emotions and preferences.
Mindful eating is radically different than any fat diet because it’s not about cutting out food groups or starving yourself. It’s something you do for the long term rather than something you go “on” and “off” of, and it teaches you to listen to your own body instead of just external pieces of advice.<