How Mindful Eating Could Change You

We have a nutrition challenge for you…but it’s a bit different than what you’re thinking.  What if you were intentional and mindful about not just WHAT you eat, but HOW and WHERE you eat it?

Let’s be honest, we all know what to eat.  The information on what you should be eating is out there…we just did a whole email series what you should eat.  We even briefly discussed how much.  But when have anyone ever talked about what we’re doing while we eat it?

When we’re in a stressed and rushed state we’re in “fight or flight” mode from a hormonal standpoint.  This includes things like working lunches, watching t.v. or Netflix, etc., and scrolling through email and social media while eating.  Why?  Because those things all trigger our bodies to be in the sympathetic nervous system which causes us to be in fight or flight.  When we’re in that loop, our bodies cannot digest and absorb food properly…even when you’re eating really high quality food.

When we sit, and focus on what we’re doing, our bodies can switch to the parasympathetic nervous system.  It’s the “rest and relax” system and it allows our bodies to process and absorb nutrients at a significantly higher rate.

So how do we accomplish such a feat?  Take the Month of Mindful Eating Challenge.  Check out the rules.

For 30 consecutive days abide by the following:

1) All meals must be eaten at a table.  A table is a piece of furniture that’s sole purpose is dining. No desks. No coffee tables.  The only exception is a picnic style meal eaten on the ground (hopefully on a sheet or blanket of some kind).

2) There can be no screens present.  Phones, tablets, computers, tv- even in the background- are not allowed. The rule clearly states screens, so if you are reading a book (an actual one, not an ebook or using a Kindle or similar type app or device) or listening to something that is technically allowed.

3)  No alcohol.  Why?  Lots of reasons.  Mostly that it often serves as a distraction from the moment and plays games with your ability to properly digest food, which is one of the things we are trying to fix.

4) Coffee, tea, water, & seltzer are freebies. You can drink those where ever you want….meaning you do not have to be at a table to consume them.  When it comes to pre and post workout shakes or meal replacement shakes, they are not one of the freebies listed so you must be at a table with no screens present.

How do you score it?  Like golf, low score wins.  If you have a perfect day, you get 0 points.  Every time you violate one of the 4 rules, you get a point.

The goal of this month is to turn off autopilot, eliminate the mindless eating, avoid the nibbling that takes place as we prepare a meal (we all do it) and bring awareness to the choices we are making.  It is our hope that after one month of practicing good behaviors we will continue to be mindful even after the challenge is over.

We dare you to get together with your office, your training buddies, or your family and take this challenge.  Start with a weigh-in and don’t step on a scale again until day 30.  No points for weight loss, but it might be a cool benefit.

Even if you can’t get anyone to do it with you, challenge yourself.  It might bring some crazy good awareness to your day about what things in your life are habitual that you didn’t even notice.

What help setting up the challenge at home or in your office?  Chat with one of our Coaches and we can help get you all set up.

Have a great week!