When was the last time that you ate dinner at your dinner table without distractions? One of the things we do today more than at any other time in history is to “eat on the go” and we always have the TV on in the background.
With all the activities that our children and grand children are in, we tend to Eat on the Go, and if we are at home to eat – we eat with the TV on.
Let’s start sitting at the table for 20-30 minutes, enjoy every bite of our meal, turn off our cell phones and our TVs and concentrate on the flavors and textures of our food, the smell of the dish, etc. When you concentrate on eating your food and enjoying it, you actually take in fewer calories and fill up faster.
The reason for this is because you are eating slower and it takes your brain 20 minutes to register that your stomach is full.
Learning mindfulness techniques, like mediation and cognitive therapy, had a 97 percent impact on the weight loss of obese individuals in one study.
One of the best examples I know of not being able to slow down is – my son’s dog. Abby doesn’t know how to slow down eating so it doesn’t matter how much food is in her bowl she scarfs it down in under a minute. She kept gaining weight and the vet suggested that she only have 1/2 cup of food in the morning and in the evening. Abby doesn’t know that she isn’t getting as much food (calories) as she was before because she still scarfs it down in under a minute. You can put food in her bowl and it is gone in the next 30 seconds. LOL.
We don’t want to eat like a dog and let someone else control how much we eat because we can’t slow down.
An old practice from years ago was to take a bite and set your fork down between bites to allow you to savor your food. I’m not sure you have to go to that length, but we do need to turn off our TV’s and phones and have no distractions while we are eating so we can enjoy our food.
I challenge you to take a week and turn off all electronics during your meal time. You may realize that food tastes totally different. I’d like to say that “eating on the go” has to go too, but I know that isn’t always possible with all the activities that we participate in. So at least when you can sit down at the dinner table – actually sit at the table and turn off the TV.
Have a great week and talk to you next week.