The busy lifestyle that we lead these days promotes multitasking as a way to be more productive and profitable. That may be true in business, but not when it comes to eating. How many of us sit down (or don’t sit down) to eat while engaging in another task in an effort to occupy our attention? Even around the family table, with the television off, we are talking as we eat. The focus of a meal is rarely the meal! We are chewing and swallowing without consciously thinking about the aroma, flavor and texture of the food we are eating. Occasionally we may ‘notice’ some of the characteristics of our meal, but still we do not expressly focus on the meal itself.
When was the last time you ate consciously, from start to finish, eating slowly, setting down the utensil between bites, and purposefully tasting, savoring and chewing your food, gratefully receiving the nutrition that it is providing for you? Can’t remember? Maybe never? For a lot of us a meal is something we squeeze in on the fly. Then we wonder why we have heartburn, gas, bloat, upset stomach and feel generally lousy after eating. Part of the reason may be that you are not chewing your food completely, meaning to a liquid! Can you even imagine chewing your food until every bit of it can be swished through your teeth like kids do with Jello?
When undigested food enters the digestive tract, your body is unable to assimilate the nutrients of that food, therefore, most of it will simply wind up sticking to the colon, thus leaching toxins back into your blood stream as it decays. Chewing your food well is a very good method of reducing stress on the digestive tract. So here’s a little challenge:
The next time you are unconsciously eating, bring your attention to the food in your mouth. Before you swallow, take a second; Feel the food. Is it chunky? Have you got a humungous bite in your mouth? If so, you are encouraged to chew again, and again. Keep noticing how much chewing it takes to get that one bite completely chewed.
By bringing consciousness to your eating, you will tend to take smaller bites, chew your food longer, enjoy the flavors and textures of your food more, feel full by eating less, reduce stress on the digestive tract and possibly lose weight and feel better.
Chew on that!
2. Bernard Jensen, M.D.
For more info, contact Shelby Molchan, Certified Colon Hydrotherapist at Reno Alternative Health Care Center, at (775) 827-6888 or visit ShelbyReno.com