Just as we possess tremendous potential to connect more deeply with people, the same goes for our bodies. Let’s create a more nourishing life by better listening to ourselves.
Are you Hungry?
We often eat because it’s the right time of day. Before you begin your next meal, think about whether you’re actually hungry. There’s no need to adhere to standard eating times if that’s not what your body needs. Eat when you’re hungry — whether that means having lunch at 11am or 3pm.
Notice when you’re eating because of stress or boredom. Research published in Frontiers in Psychology revealed this to be totally normal: it stems from a desire to escape the present situation. When you reach for those desk snacks, take a moment to ask if you’re actually hungry. Is that what your body really needs, or is it a response to a certain emotion?
Are you Full?
When you’re eating, take your time, put your spoon down between mouthfuls, and notice how you feel. Too often we race through our meal, which not only robs us of the pleasures of eating well, but also leads to overeating. The set portion size might not be right for you. When you’re eating, focus on how your stomach feels throughout the entire meal. As you become full, the empty feeling will be replaced with a gentle pressure. When you feel that pressure, it likely means you’ve had enough, regardless of how much food may remain (just save it for next time!). You should still feel light and energetic with this pressure.
How do you Feel?
When you finish a meal, don’t rush on to the next activity. Take a moment to think about how you now feel. Do you feel energized, exhausted, lethargic, bloated, still hungry? Try to connect what you eat and how you feel so you can adjust your choices in the future — and eat what really makes you feel good.
What will Help?
By understanding how certain foods impact your body and mind, you can nourish yourself by eating according to your needs. If you feel down, food rich in vitamin D will help improve your mood; if you have a cold, add ginger, turmeric, and citrus to your diet; if you’re tired, boost your energy levels with water and complex carbohydrates.
By strengthening the connection to your own self, you can eat more mindfully, and lead a more nourishing, energized life.