5 Ways to Beat Mindless Eating

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Do you frequently eat at your desk? Or while watching television? Maybe even sitting at your computer? If you answered yes, you're not alone. Although it may seem that you're getting more accomplished by multitasking, eating when you are busy can confuse your mind and body into eating more.

For most of us, eating is just a blip in our day. We put food in our mouth, swallow and move on to the next bite. Then when the meal is over, something is missing. So we reach for more a candy bar, a bag of chips to provide a sense of satisfaction.

In his book, Mindless Eating, Cornell University Professor Brian Wansink reported that we make more than 200 food-related decisions each day. Most of these decisions we can't explain. And some we don't even remember making. In other words, we don't often think about the why and how of eating, we just eat.

It may be hard to imagine sitting down during a meal and spending 20 minutes to eat your food without any distractions. So, what does this mean for us? It means we need to return to the joy of eating and take the time to see, feel, taste and smell our food. It means eating more mindfully.

Below are some tips from Sherri Flynt, registered/licensed dietitian, with AdventHealth, to help us do just that this year:

1. Try eating with your non-dominant hand. This will definitely slow you down.
2. Cut your food into quarter-size pieces and chew each bite 20 times.
3. Take at least 20 minutes to eat your meal.
4. Eat without any distractions (not as easy as it sounds). No shopping online, no talking while eating (after all you're not supposed to talk with food in your mouth)!
5. Don't eat at your desk.

Let's resolve to truly experience what we're eating, and to reflect on why were eating.
Then we can make 2016 the year we reconnect with food!

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