Why Does Eating Mindfully Matter?
I will confess..... there was a time when this was a foreign concept to me. It wasn't until I was assigned a mindful eating exercise in a class, that I truly began to understand the value in it.
Here is my experience.....
I chose to mindfully eat an avocado. Upon visual inspection, I noted that it was very dark in color, pitted, and egg-shaped. The sun had kissed its firm outer coating, allowing it to become dark green, almost black. The water, during growth, had plumped it up and softened its leather-like skin. It had a very pungent, yet clean earthy smell to it. I noticed my stomach rumbling a bit more, as well as an increase in salivation while anticipating this delightful fruit. Upon spooning out the first bite, my whole being was awakened. My tongue was squishing and breaking it down into a toothpaste-like consistency. I noticed my tongue pushing it to the left side of my mouth. The taste was smooth, and the earthy taste enhanced as my saliva mixed with it. My saliva production appeared to slow down the more I chewed. Much like the rise and fall of the ocean tides. I finally hit the point where I could no longer fight the urge to swallow the mash. Upon swallowing, I could feel it travel down my esophagus to my stomach. The taste and smell appeared to linger in my mouth and nose--exceptional.
I eat avocados regularly, and have never experienced eating one the way I did today. I have always just liked the taste of them. Today, I actually appreciated it from seed to mouth. Instead of an act of eating, it became more of a blessing. I deeply thought about how it was grown, the water that caressed it from the inside out, the photosynthesis that took place, encouraging it to sprout and grow. I thought about the farmer that prayed for the rain, and wished no harm from harsh weather and insects. I thought about those who harvested the avocado's, and wondered what they were thinking about when they plucked them from the trees.
Mindful eating is good for your body and soul
It takes twenty minutes for your brain to let you know that you are full. Honor where your food came from and how it made its way to your plate. Think of how your food will nourish your body. Put your fork down between bites. Chew thoroughly. Mindfulness alone can keep you from overeating and reduce the burden upon your digestive tract.
Go ahead....Try something new!
Take a moment to choose a food that you like. What does it feel like in your hands? What color is it? Think about where it came from. Did it come from a tree, vine, or the soil? Take a bite of it and really think about chewing it. What was its texture upon entering your mouth? How did the texture evolve as you chewed and savored it? Don't swallow it just yet. Take note of your tongue attempting to push it toward the back of your mouth to swallow. This is a grand mindful eating exercise that will not only allow you to chew thoroughly, but it will create a digestive response for enzyme action all the way down to your intestines for maximum nutrient absorption.
Slowing down can make a huge positive impact on our well-being. What food will you choose to eat mindfully?