What is mindful eating?

  • Enjoying seasonal, local and organic foods without artificial ingredients (SLOW foods), being curious and understanding yourself better

  • No longer relying on external cues and contradictory cultural messages to inform how we approach food

  • Listening to our body’s preferences, hunger and fullness cues, and response to food

  • Forget all the ‘food rules’, no longer dwell on past food choices and reactions. Base each food decision on how you feel in that present moment

  • No more calorie counting, deprivation, and avoiding ‘bad’ foods forever

  • Not just WHAT we eat but how, why, when, where and how often that’s equally important.

The four pillars of mindful eating:

Actual hunger vs emotional triggers

 

Are you really hungry, do you stop at 80% full or stuff yourself to the point of a #foodcoma? Or are you bored, lonely, tired, stressed? Ask yourself this next time you reach for that cupcake. There are so many healthy ways to deal with uncomfortable emotions instead of abusing our bodies with mindlessly eating toxic foods.

1.

Gratitude

 

Who grew it? Raised it? Cooked it? Served it? Provided or enabled it?

Take a few moments before inhaling your next meal to pause and really be grateful to everyone who enabled this meal.

Remember the positive affirmations and gratitude exercises.

3.

Food environment

 

Do you sit down to enjoy three square meals a day or are you eating on the run, at your desk, in the car, standing up, plus constant and random snacking? Do you make time to eat socially or do you prefer to eat alone? It’s not how much you eat that’s important, it’s how often you eat that’s they key to health and weight loss. Put the phone down, switch off all tech around you and enjoy every delicious bite.

2.

Nutrition

 

Choose SLOW foods when possible, clean 15 and dirty dozen, eat foods as close to as nature intended, whole foods, real foods. Remember that all calories are not created equal: an avocado may have a lot more calories than a processed ‘health bar’, but it’s an important source of brain-loving healthy fats and vitamin E so please don’t ever deny yourself fruits and vegetables!

4.

Cravings

  • Not a sign of weakness, but instead important messages from our body about something lacking in our ‘primary foods’

  • Cravings are our body’s way of trying to maintain balance when other elements in our life are missing or unfulfilling: exercise, love, self-care, rest, meditation, a satisfying career, healthy relationships. This is when we reach for comfort foods, not celery sticks. We seek escapism, in response to difficult emotions, and numb ourselves with food, alcohol and caffeine.

  • If you really need that cake, have it, but enjoy it mindfully. We guarantee you’ll eat less than when you’re mindlessly gorging during a Netflix marathon.

  • Enjoy your favourite comfort foods as part of the 80/20 or 90/10 lifestyle – remember the S rule: ‘sugar, seconds and snacks only on days that begin with S.’

  • Seasonal: a desire for warming, heartier meals in winter like soups and stews and cooling, hydrating foods in the summer like cucumber, melons, tomatoes and peppers.

  • Hormonal: menstruation, menopause and pregnancy can all trigger unique food cravings due to fluctuating estrogen and testosterone.

  • Self-sabotage: when starting a new dietary regime, we throw in the towel completely because of one too many indulgences at the weekend

  • Sleep deprivation: increases the hunger hormone, grehlin, making us constantly hungry. Recognise those days when you’re extra tired and know that could be why you're eating everything in sight!

  • Dehydration: can trick us into thinking we’re hungry, but really all we need is a couple glasses of water. Try this next time you’re hungry and see how long it can stave off hunger.

  • Avoid strict and fad diets: such as low fat, raw vegan, ketogenic etc. They’ll only make you crave the very foods you’re aiming to avoid – processed, sugary, carby treats.

 

Instead of caving into cravings: nourish yourself with some much-deserved self-care: go for a walk, pat a pet, paint your nails, get a massage, read a book, bake a healthy treat, dance it out to your fave song, you get the idea…

Ditch the diet mindset

  • Because of the constant snacking many of us feel we need to survive on, it’s difficult to know what true hunger feels like

  • Re-set your body’s hunger and metabolism by eating three regular meals at the same time every day: a light breakfast by 10am, a big lunch between 12-2pm and a small dinner two hours before bedtime

  • Don’t skip meals ever! You’ll think you can overcompensate at your next meal, consuming way too much food and excess calories.

What does my body say YES! and NOOO! to?

  • What foods leave you bloated, gassy, burping, constipated, brain foggy? Do you feel particularly moody, anxious or flat after that carb overload? There's a huge connection between our gut and brain, so pay attention to how you feel mentally, too.

  • Get to know your unique body - it’s about awareness and acceptance. Listen with love to your body’s needs and cooperate with your body

  • You can reset your tastebuds in just three days of following a refined-sugar-free, plant-based, unprocessed diet. You’ll begin to crave vegetables, fruits and nuts (yup, gimme peanut butter and banana any day of the week!) instead of junk foods – don’t believe us? See for yourself by giving your body a break from inflammatory, processed foods: sugar, vegetable oils, corn, soy, gluten, dairy and of course, gluten. Interested in learning more about elimination diets and how to identify food allergies and intolerances? Contact me now to book your free 60-minute consultation.

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Digestion

  • Begins by chewing each mouthful at least 20-30 bites

  • It’s especially important for people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) to eat in a calm, stress-free environment

  • If you’re stressed, anxious, eating through your lunch break at your desk etc, you won’t digest your food properly. Very common to experience bloating, wind, reflux and even diarrhea when eating in a stressed, rushed environment

  • Consider the gut-brain connection: 70-80% of serotonin (the feel-good hormone) is produced in the gut by our good bacteria. An imbalance in good and bad bacteria can lead to mood issues like anxiety and depression. Certain foods, especially refined  wheat, can cause anxiety and mood disorders.

  • Constant snacking puts the digestion process on pause. We need at least a 2-4 hours fast in between meals.

  • Intermittent fasting is great for digestion. After dinner, don’t eat again for 12-14 hours. So if you have dinner at 7pm, don’t have breakfast until after 7am. So, instead of eating because the closck says 8am, check in with your body and let it tell you when to eat.

Ayurveda

  • Start with reading the incredible book, ‘Change your schedule, change your life’ by Dr Suhas Kshirsagar you can also listen to this inspiring podcast with Dr Kshirsagar and Melissa Ambrosini.

  • Discover your dominant dosha – there are three - vata, pitta and kapha - and we all display varying amounts of each

  • Ayurveda encourages us to eat in a way that supports our dosha. For example pitta’s are fiery and must achieve balance through cooling foods like cucumber, fennel, coriander

  • Ayurveda says the best time of the day to have your biggest meal is between 12-2pm as this is when our digestive fire, our agni, is strongest and better able to digest our food

  • Avoid heavy protein dinners as this can interfere with sleep, for those who already struggle with broken sleep.

  • Look out for the book 'Eat right for your shape' by fellow Aussie health coach, Lee Holmes.

 

Find out your dosha by taking a quiz: https://shop.chopra.com/dosha-quiz

 

https://lifespa.com/ayurvedic-health-quizzes/body-type-quiz/body-type-quiz-form/

A mindful afternoon...

 

Keep a food diary

This is an empowering daily activity that can help you draw conclusions about your food choices and how you feel - both physically and mentally.

Many people don't connect the dots between their health and what they eat and drink. But keeping a food diary, even if just for a few days, will help you identify possible connections.

 

Remember: what tastes good on the tongue doesn’t always feel good in the body.

Track how you feel:

  • during your meal

  • 30 minutes after eating

  • 3-4 hours later.

Healing affirmations

Affirmations (or mantras) are thoughts and beliefs that can be used both positively or negatively. Every thought we think is really an affirmation and is creating our reality, so choose your thoughts carefully. Instead of thinking thoughts of lack, deprivation, control, hunger (hello, calorie counting!), and 'good' foods vs 'bad' foods, re-frame your thinking and carefully choose the positive thoughts that will create the healthy body (and mind) that you desire.

"I can eat whatever I like as long as it’s healthy”

“I joyfully digest the experiences of life. Life agrees with me”

“I love my body and nourish it with the healthiest foods I can find”

“I lovingly listen to my body’s nutritional needs and preferences”

Thank you SO much for joining us.

 

Want to know more about my programs and FREE 60-minute consultation?

Finally, remember the 'S' rule - no sweets, seconds or snacks except on days that begin with 'S'.

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©2019 by Bianca Chaptini