Eat Consciously

Mindless eating, we have all done it. You are running late to work so you grab something on the way. You find yourself getting home later than planned so you order pizza to take the burden of cooking off of you. Or maybe you are emotionally depressed and exhausted due to something traumatic that has happened and you are doing everything you can to just get through each day. In each of these cases, food is the last thing on your mind, your focus is simply ‘getting through’ whatever you are faced with at the moment, that could be something as simple as feeding the family dinner or something as damaging as going through a divorce.

Whatever circumstances you are faced with, mindless eating can – and will – eventually take its toll. It’s easy to forget, but mindless eating can be a dangerous thing. Every year thousands of people die from incurable illnesses and diseases, and many times these illnesses can be linked back to the foods that we eat. If you aren’t eating consciously, you are posing a significant risk to your health and maybe even your life.

If you are thinking about making new year’s resolutions, you may want to think about learning to eat consciously. Unlike most new year’s resolutions that involve dramatic changes to your day-to-day life, you can learn to eat consciously rather easily. In fact, just a few simple steps in your daily routine can have significant changes on your health and overall well-being.

To start, make a decision to really think about your food before you eat it. Think about why you want it and what you want it to do for you. Don’t judge yourself here, be honest. For instance, if you want that glass of wine, is it because you have had a bad day and you want to unwind? If you are reaching for that chocolate, is it because you have had a rough day and you want a bit of comfort food? Whatever your motivations are, don’t be ashamed of them.

You will also want to think about how you will feel after you have taken that sip of wine or eaten that chocolate. While it might feel good at the moment, will you feel tired and out of sorts after? Will you wake up the next morning with an upset stomach or headache? If you aren’t sure how you will be feeling after each meal, keep a small food journal. Simply write down what you ate and how you felt after. If you are finding yourself feeling run down after a certain food, it might be time to see if that food really has a purpose in your day-to-day life.

Eating consciously isn’t about denying yourself your favorite foods, it is about gaining an understanding of how those foods will affect your body and deciding whether or not those effects are worth the temporary pleasure of your tastebuds. If you choose to continue eating your favorite foods, learning to eat consciously will help you find that balance between satisfying your cravings and not overindulging.

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