On my way to the market the other day, I passed a guy walking down the street while eating from a takeout container.
At the market café, I noticed every diner was staring at a laptop or phone.
While shopping, a woman passed by me pushing a cart while snacking on a bag of chips.
Does any of this sound familiar to you?
When was the last time you just ate when you ate?
The Downside of Distracted Dining
When we dine while distracted—that is, eat while working, watching TV, reading, texting, driving, folding laundry, etc.—we miss out on fully experiencing the pleasure and satisfaction food can provide.
We are also completely disconnected from our body's internal cues of hunger and fullness.
Researchers have found that distracted diners are more likely to:
- Eat faster
- Feel considerably less full
- Not recall eating
- Experience more cravings
- Snack more
- Desire larger meals later in the day
I Always Want More
When I multitask while eating, I’m unsatisfied when I look down at my empty plate. I want more food even though I’m no longer physically hungry.
I also feel a brick in my stomach from eating too fast, not chewing and overeating.
Plus, it’s disappointing when I’ve taken time to prepare a yummy meal then don’t take time to truly savor it and barely remember eating it.
Show It Some Love!
Many of us say we love food, yet we don’t show it any love when eating it!
What would happen if you ditched the distractions, slowed down and gave your food your undivided attention?
Try picking one meal or snack a day to eat more mindfully. Note any differences in how you feel physically, mentally and emotionally.
You may feel restless or bored at first, but I promise you, the results will be worth it.
“At its most essential, the apple you hold is a manifestation of the wonderful presence of life. It is interconnected with all that is. It contains the whole universe; it is an ambassador of the cosmos coming to nourish our existence. It feeds our body, and if we eat it mindfully, it also feeds our soul and recharges our spirit.”
―Thich Nhat Hanh, Savor: Mindful Eating, Mindful Life