What Is Mindful Eating?
Is Mindful Eating A Diet?
Many people think that mindful eating is a new diet, and believe this is going to help you lose weight. It’s really confusing when the person teaching heavier people to use mindful eating is thin. You see her, and think- mindful eating made her thin, and maybe it will help ME lose weight. It’s NOT true.
When you go to a mindful eating site and see a thin guru talking about what you should or should not eat, you are in a diet site. Actual diet industry sites are now benefitting from the focus on intuitive eating, using the language of mindfulness but they are REALLY diet sites.
You can tell the difference if your coach or program has you weighing yourself, or eliminating certain foods in favor of others. They may say, “it’s a lifestyle change” – but NO- IT IS A DIET they are selling. Get out of there fast, or you’ll end up gaining more weight! Don’t let them fool you!
The Newest Kind of Disordered Eating
Orthorexia which is only eating “healthy food”. It has become yet another diet strategy, and in the extreme, is considered disordered eating. In many cases it’s just another excuse for dieting… don’t lie to yourself. Eating for health is one thing (but we really don’t even know what that is!) but saying you’re eating clean with your true intention losing weight is NOT mindful eating!
Will You Lose Weight with Mindful Eating?
Some people MAY lose some weight with mindful eating, but this is NOT always the case. Some people do lose weight, and some don’t. Some people do even gain some weight. But by staying with the program you have a chance of your weight becoming stable at your natural set point.
But if you are trying Mindful Eating, Intuitive Eating, or HAES (Health at Any Size) believing you are going to lose weight, you still have a diet mentality. If you plan to increase your exercise after you eat, that is STILL a diet mentality. Diets don’t work. Eat less, and exercise more is a HOAX.
Are You Ready for Mindful Eating?
Have gotten to the point where you are tired of obsessing about your weight, what you look like, what you can and cannot eat? Have you had your mind opened to understanding that dieting is not the way to permanently lose weight, and you are fighting a “losing battle”? Then maybe you are ready to try Mindful Eating.
When you are able to learn about Mindful Eating from a heavy coach, you know you have stopped believing that Intuitive Eating is going to help you lose weight. AND, Mindful Eating is part of a plan of normalizing your relationship to food, but it is leaving out a very important component that many people suffer from: Emotional Eating!
Your weight is dependent on MANY factors. People hate to hear it, but perhaps the most important reason for your weight is inherited. And women who have genetics that make them shorter and rounder are exactly the ones who try the most to change themselves.
If you have an early history of abuse, neglect or humiliation (before age 6) there’s a big chance that you will be heavier in your life. It’s not even a conscious decision to protect yourself with weight, but a subconscious way that your body is trying to protect you from further abuse. This is not made up. The ACE Study, was one of the largest, long term studies on adult health that included over 17,000 people. The affect of various risk factors showed that young children who were exposed to this type of upbringing had many negative health risks as an adult. And although being obese in itself is not unhealthy, it is one of the outcomes of being exposed to less that “normal” upbringing.
Is Mindful Eating the Same as Intuitive Eating?
Mindful eating, also known as Intuitive eating is a way to jettison the diet mentality of restrictive eating what you “should”. You eat what you want and when you are hungry, not following the clock. Your body has always known how much you need to eat (and drink). But dieting has made you stop trusting your body’s signals of hunger and satiation.
How To Eat Mindfully
Eating mindfully is pretty simple. You stop multi-tasking and focus on your food. Stop talking on the phone, reading, texting, or doing other distracting activities while you are eating. You should be at the table, not standing, or driving. It’s really simple in some ways!
Mindful Eating Tips
- set the table
- put on relaxing music
- look at your food and feel gratitude
- chew throughly
- take your time eating
- when your mind wanders, gently bring it back to how your food tastes
- notice the texture and think about what you enjoy the most
- decide what you like best and least about what you are eating
- ask your stomach if it’s getting full
- stop just at the beginning of feeling full (leave room for dessert!)
- thank yourself for nurturing yourself as you would someone you love
Fears about Mindful Eating
Many women are “fed up” with fighting the “losing battle”. But when you think about eating ANYTHING you want, many women are fearful that they will never be able to stop eating.
When you first ditch your diet mentality, it’s important to eat the foods you want – guilt free. That’s why I work with my clients to teach them about EFT Tapping. This is not designed to make you eat less. Emotional Freedom Technique meridian tapping will help you dispel your fears about eating and nurturing yourself. It will lessen your stress around food. Because sometimes you go to eat, and you “can’t” stop or use your mindful eating tools. That’s because you’re not eating from hunger, but from STRESS.
How To Tell If it’s Emotional or Physical Hunger
You can try eating mindfully on your own. It’s a good way to use the time to de-stress from the day’s events. And, just like meditation, you will find you mind wandering. That’s natural. Don’t get angry at yourself, because that just increases your stress level. It’s a “practice”!
I’m here to help de-program you from the diet mentality that got into your head – to help you learn to love, appreciate and forgive yourself; to learn how to nurture yourself. You deserve it.. Feel free to write to me with questions and comments