Mindful eating is eating with conscious awareness of the hunger, sense impressions and pleasure of eating.
One of the key benefits of mindful eating is that you get a lot more pleasure out of the food you eat. And pleasure is healthy. Very healthy. Pleasure reduces stress, increases mental robustness and improves brain function. Pleasure prevents depression and other mental problems.
And just as the British band Depeche Mode sings – “Everybody’s looking for at reason to live / If you’re looking for at reason / I’ve a reason to give / Pleasure, little treasure” – pleasure is meaningful in itself. No matter how the pleasureful activity affects health. Everyday pleasure makes everyday life more meaningful. Mindful eating allows you to extract much more pleasure from the food you eat. Without changing the food you eat. You simply change the way you eat it. You consciously focus your attention on the pure sensing and enjoyment of the food while you are eating it. Withot letting your mind wander away with anything else. You just eat. And remember to be present with your awareness when the pleasure is high. And let go when the pleasure is down to a level where it is not worth eating anymore.
The best way to train mindful eating is to do eating meditations. You can do eating meditations on both main meals and snacks. It doesn’t matter what you eat. Eating meditation is a mental exercise in which you develop your ability to concentrate on eating. Without doing anything else. Without being anywhere else with your mind.
Click here to listen to one of my instructions in eating meditation for free. The meditation instructions last 16 minutes. Have some food ready to eat before you start the exercise.
In your everyday eating you then try to be as mindful as possible with as many mouthfuls as possible. You go on a mindful eating course in which you take small steps towards more mindful eating.
You can follow me on Twitter where I tweet about mindful eating and conscious health in general. My Twitter name is @pleasurehealth.