Pay attention to your body’s cues about what you need. Is your body wisdom trying to tell you need food, movement, rest, water, connection, calm, entertainment, or something else?
When you are hungry, there is no better way to take care of yourself than to mindfully enjoy delicious, nourishing (or not so nourishing) food!
If you find yourself needing comfort, choose a comfort food from your childhood or a pleasurable food from a favorite restaurant you’ve been missing.
Add connection when possible. Share your meal with others at your table – or virtually!
Enjoy your meal mindfully. Fully engage in eating by savoring the appearance, aromas, textures, and flavors of your food. Mindful eating acts as a mini-meditation that is very calming and centering to the mind.
Pay attention to the subtle symptoms of satiety so you are able to move from eating to another activity before you feel overly full and uncomfortable. Remember, you are eating to feel better, not worse!
If you want to eat and recognize that you don’t have any physical signs of hunger, you may still choose to eat!
Just remember then that the primary purpose for eating is comfort, pleasure, and/or distraction. Therefore, steps 1 through 6 are more important, not less. (Eating fast while watching TV is not likely to be nearly as pleasurable!)
If you realize you are not hungry, recognize the opportunity to name and feel the emotion(s) you are experiencing.
Is there a need you can identify such as comfort, connection, a break, rest, fun? What small step can you take right now to meet that need? Putting on some music? Texting a friend? Walking outside for a bit? Playing a game with a friend? You get the idea!
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