As you begin to be more mindful during your meals, you might have a little difficulty with
the silence and your mind wandering. If you can’t listen to anything or watch TV, what
do you actually put your focus on? Here are some things you will pay attention to when
you are mindful eating.
Think About Why You Chose the Food You Did
The first thing you can focus on is what you are eating and what made you choose that
food. This is a great first step to mindful eating, and also combines some practices of
intuitive eating as well. It is a way to remain neutral and not judge your choices, but at
the same time, become aware of your intentions, understand if you were physically or
emotionally hungry, and soon learn when you crave certain types of foods.
How Does it Smell?
Start using your senses by starting with smell. What aromas do you notice in the food,
and how do they change between just sitting in front of your plate, and taking your first
bite? Is the smell intriguing? Is it sweet smelling or tangy? Does it smell spicy because
of all the garlic and peppers you used? Smell is an interesting sense to use while
mindful eating, because unlike taste and sight, it isn’t one you think you use very often
Do You Enjoy the Flavors?
As you begin eating your meal, notice each of the flavors of your food and decide if they
are satisfying or not. One thing to do during this time is to first imagine how it will taste,
then describe how it does taste, and finally the best part of the flavors. Is it the slightly
tangy sweetness of a piece of fruit? Or are you enjoying the freshness of the salad more
than you thought you would? Again, a lot can come up with this very simple practice.
When Did You Start Experiencing Fullness?
When you get further into your meal, start eating slower and paying attention to your
body’s signals. You are looking for signs that you might start getting full. This can be a
little different for everyone, but here are some signs to keep an eye out for:
The food starts tasting different or less intriguing
You start playing with your food
Your stomach feels physically full or bloated
You lose interest in the food
Do You Feel Happy and Satisfied?
When your meal is over, do a summary about how you felt and if you are satisfied and
happy with your food choices. Was it a satisfying meal? Would you eat it again? Would
you prepare it differently next times?