If there’s anything I’ve learnt on my journey to recovery it is the power of eating more mindfully. Focussing on set meal times as a time to take a breather from my busy day and really look after myself has put a stop to my binge eating and given me back control over my mental health. So I’d like to share some words of wisdom.
Now, you may be asking what is mindful eating Sophie?? Mindful eating, for me, just means slowing things down when it comes to food. Often in our hectic lives, we’re rushing about all day and food unfortunately falls second place to meetings, lectures, and errands. It is so tempting to just grab a coffee and a sugary snack to spike our energy levels and power through the day. I’ve certainly been guilty of replacing nutritious snacks with a large Americano in the past, denying my body of real food and then binging during the evening. But since turning a new leaf and promising to really take care of my body I no longer crave blood sugar spikers and have escaped this cycle.
Along with regaining balance when it comes to food, slowing down meal times has totally freed me from the anxiety that used to flood my body. So I’d like to offer some tips to help to achieve this mind state when the clock strikes tea time.
- Don’t wait until you’re starving to eat. This way you reduce the risk of rushing around the kitchen scavenging for convenience food.
- Slow down time. If food is causing you any form of anxiety or stress, set aside an hour of your evening to focus on your dinner. Put your phone to one side and rid yourself of any distractions.
- Chew, chew, chew. It takes around 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain it’s full so slow down your eating. You may not need that second portion as feeling overly full can trigger a binge. Rushing whilst eating will only add to your sense of panic.
- Eat in a calm environment. Whether this be by yourself or with friends and family, make sure you feel relaxed and still before tucking in.
- Nourish yourself. Plan out your meals before hand and really fall in love with whole, healthy foods. Things such as whole grains, fruits, veggies, fish and eggs with keep you full for longer and leave your tummy and your mind satisfied.
- Say goodbye to restrictions. If you fancy a chocolate bar, go for it! Savour it and see it as something that’s boosting your mental health rather than destroying your “healthy” routine. By allowing yourself regular treats the negativity surrounding these foods will disappear and you’ll hopefully start to enjoy them more mindfully.
Whether you’re struggling with binge eating or are just looking to learn more about coping with the stresses of daily life I hope these tips will guide you on your way to peace of mind at meal times.
Lots of love,