5 Powerful Reasons to Eat More Slowly
The festive season is upon us and for most people eating is an integral part of their celebrations. Our dining tables tend to have much more food on them than we normally have. We are spoilt for choice and in our desire to have a taste of each variety we tend to gobble up the foods so fast we hardly enjoy them.
The festive period also comes with a flurry of activities that many people rush through the day, with no time for anything. When they have time to get a bite to eat, they gobble it down. This habit of eating fast has serious debilitating effects on our general health. It leads to a stressful and unhealthy lifestyle. Eating should be a slow and pleasurable experience if we are to derive maximum benefit from the food we eat.
Here are some reasons why you should consider the simple act of eating slower:
- Weight loss. A growing number of studies confirm that just by eating slower, you’ll consume fewer calories -- in fact, enough to lose 20 pounds a year without doing anything different or eating anything different. It takes about 20 minutes for your brain to register that you’re full. If you eat fast, you can continue eating past the point where you’re actually full.
- Enjoy your food. It’s hard to enjoy your food if it goes by too quickly. Make your meals a gastronomic pleasure, not a thing you do in a rush, between stressful events.
- Better digestion. If you eat slower, you’ll chew your food better, which leads to better digestion. Digestion actually starts in the mouth, so the more work you do up there, the less you’ll have to do down there, in your stomach.
- Less stress. Eating slowly, and paying attention to our eating, can be a great form of mindfulness exercise. Be in the moment, rather than rushing through a meal thinking about what you need to do next.
- Rebel against fast food and fast life. A hectic, fast-paced, stressful, chaotic life -- the Fast Life -- leads to eating Fast Food, and eating it quickly. Rebel against that entire lifestyle and philosophy with the small act of eating slower.
- Adapted from Zen Habits July 13, 2007
There you are. Make it a point this festive season to start practicing eating slowly and enjoying your meals. This act will go a long way in improving your general wellbeing.
Contributed by Stuart Wilson.