Pst! It has nothing to do with WHAT you eat.
One of the best ways we can start to eat better is by improving our food hygiene, or rather, or habits around how we eat.
Step 1: Slow Down
Many of us are busy and on a tight schedule, this means we tend to spend the least amount of time with our food; preparing it, getting it, and even eating it. Slowing down before we consume our food is important. When we are rushed or hurried to eat (while on the go, while driving, etc.) our bodies aren’t in an optimal state to receive and digest the food we’re eating.
Try taking 10 deep belly breaths in a seated position before you eat. See if you notice any difference.
Step 2: Sit Down
Much like number one, sitting down at a table (preferably with no other distractions like screens) can also help us become more intuitive while we eat (i.e. feeling our hunger cues) and aid in digestion.
Try sitting down at the table for your next meal and see what you notice.
Step 3: Chew, Chew, Chew!
Have you noticed a theme? Digestion is an often forgotten important element to our overall eating experience. If we aren’t digesting the food we consume, properly, we aren’t getting the most out of what we’re eating. Digestion and it’s moving parts also influence other important functions of our bodies, so we want to support it every way we can.
If we are eating mindlessly or too quickly, we are doing a disservice to the first step of digestion: the mouth. Our saliva and chewing help break down the food we eat, and we can even begin to start absorbing nutrients at this stage. If we aren’t chewing our food properly, it can cause disruption in our digestion later down the line.
Try chewing the next bite of food 28-32 times.
Step 4: Eat Slow
In our rushed attempts to finish a meal, not only do we not chew enough, but we tend to eat more quickly.
Try putting your fork or spoon down between each bite (and practice chewing 28-32 times, of course).
You can also set a timer for 20 minutes and see if you can eat your meal more incrementally over the 20 minutes.
Step 5: Eat With Others
As mentioned in Step 2, in our hustle and bustle culture, eating becomes a secondary priority (or even lower). We eat while we…work, drive, watch TV…which usually causes us to eat quickly, while on the move, while not sitting… Eating with others can help hold us accountable to steps 1-4, but it’s also good to have good company. Sharing meals with others improves our well-being.
Try having your next meal with a friend or a family member and see how you feel.
Did you find this helpful? Be sure to share with a friend or reply letting us know what you tried.