March is National Nutrition Month

Be it for the sake of weight loss, better habits, or a desire to find more pleasure surrounding food, we can all relate to wanting to refine our eating habits. With March, being National Nutrition Month there is no better time than now to start thinking about your own eating habits.

What is Mindful Eating?

It is not much different than it sounds, mindful eating is an approach to eating that focuses on awareness. It has little to do with calories, protein, carbohydrates, or fat, but instead teaches us to acknowledge our physical and emotional hunger cues and responses to food. It guides you to listen to your body as mind-less eating may lead to binge eating, weight gain, poor health, guilty feelings and more.

How to Eat Mindfully?

  • Notice and honor your hunger
  • Learn how to differentiate between true hunger and other eating triggers such as boredom, stress, sadness, or anger
  • Focus on your meal without distractions
  • Chew slowly, savor each bite
  • Engage your senses and notice flavors, textures, colors, and smells
  • Stop eating when you start to feel full (this can take up to 20 minutes)
  • Notice how you feel after eating different foods and portion sizes
  • Respect your body and remember we all have a different “genetic blueprint.” No matter what size or shape, develop an appreciation for eating habits that makes you feel your best.

Benefits of Mindful Eating

  • Weight Management – mindful eating can help you get out of a dieting mindset so you can settle into long-term behaviors and results.
  • Improved Mood – you learn how to appreciate the experience of eating, which in return helps you do the same in other areas of your life.
  • Awareness – becoming an observer of your thought patterns and behaviors about eating will create space to pause and feel in control of day-to-day options and choices
  • Mindfulness – in general, being mindful can help lower cortisol levels, blood pressure, stress levels, and heart rate.

The theme of this year’s National Nutrition Month is “Eat Right Bite by Bite,” Rachael Roberts, Nutrition Care Manager at Carson Tahoe Health encourages, “if you want to give mindful eating a try, start slow just one bite at a time and really pay attention to what you are eating and why.”

For more information about Nutrition Services at Carson Tahoe Health, please visit https://www.carsontahoe.com/nutrition