Monday, July 27, 2009

Conscious Eating

We are an eat on-the-go society. We eat in the car, walking, in front of the TV and computer. For us moms, it could mean eating on the floor while watching the children play. There are so many ways not to eat mindfully. Of course, there are all the benefits of eating as a family. But what is really on my mind is those moments when I don't have Mikey and I find myself in the silence of an empty house.

I usually eat at some point during this time and it's usually something sweet. Last year, I would eat a couple squares of dark chocolate with tea. I would get my squares, place them on a plate; my tea would be ready and I would sit at the table. I tried not to think about anything else except my chocolate. I would think about how it tastes and how my body was feeling.

By eating mindfully, I realized that the chocolate was making me feel sort of sick. The more I felt the same sensation over and over again, I soon stopped eating the chocolate all together. I even believe that I might be a little allergic to chocolate because of how sick I was feeling after eating eat. What is so interesting is that I did not notice these symptoms until, I changed the way that I ate my chocolate.

Since I have so little free time, it's easy to eat while checking my email, but I have been thinking a lot about what I learned from Eckhart Tolle. When he was on Oprah last year, someone asked him how he would approach obesity or dieting. I am not obese or dieting but what he said applies to me too. He said if you want to eat a chocolate bar, don't deny yourself the bar but sit and eat it in stillness. Think about the chocolate bar and how it tastes, how it is making you feel. Think about whether you're hungry or full. He says that if we eat with our full awareness we will eventually eat less.

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