THE 1 Key Ingredient for Better Health
5 Steps to Mindful Eating. I just had a great visit back home in DC with my parents. I try not to be too preachy, yet give them some pointers for better health. Mom asked me with that wonderful sincere motherly curiosity…what is this Mindful Eating? JUST the opening I’ve been waiting for. And I sang weellllll, if you really want to know….
Now for the record, I’ve been a mindful eater all my adult life, before it was a thing or a hashtag. I stopped eating most meat when I was 16 years old. Since then, I’ve done all types of eating. The Atkins Diet, Weight Watchers, the 7-Day Diet, the Cabbage Soup Diet, and so on. I’ve done detoxes for varying lengths and reasons—skin, liver, colon, etc. I Fast when the spirit calls me to do so. And I say all this to say, I ALWAYS know what I’m eating…healthy or otherwise.
On the otherwise front…I HAVE to have funnel cake or animal ears (basically fried dough and confectionary sugar) at festivals and amusement parks. I LOVE caramel cake, peach cobbler and pecan pie, and tend to eat them whenever presented. And my mom’s Million Dollar Pound Cake? Can’t say no and don’t feel bad about it. Why? Because I eat mindfully and therefore find balance. At 50 I am on no medications and at a healthy weight. I’m amazed that my doctors are amazed at this.
So my mom was eating peanut butter crackers. You know the ones in the clear wrapper, rectangular, and ORANGE. I said, “Mom, you know you might not want to eat those. Look at the color. You don’t need to read the packaging to know that’s not good for you because nothing in nature is that orange, but an orange itself.” Then I braced myself for her to tell me to mind my own business. Fortunately, all she said was, but they’re soooo good. I know my place, so we left it at that and moved on to the next subject.
So I just want to share a few Mindful Eating tips that I told her about that you can add to your eating habits for this week, and hopefully the rest of your life…
- Look at the color—If it’s pink, blue and orange and not a vegetable or fruit, you can bet it’s processed. Don’t eat it (or eat sparingly. Everyone likes a little cotton candy).
- Smell it--Like meat or fish. If it stinks, err on the side of caution. Don’t eat it.
- Touch it—If it’s fatty, dense or tough, it’s likely to accumulate in your body and clog stuff up. Don’t eat it.
- Taste it—If it’s super sugary and not a fruit or vegetable, it’s probably full of refined sugar or refined wheat. If it is, save it for special occasions.
- Listen to it—Once you’ve done the above quick 4-point scan of your food, listen to your GUT. What’s it telling you? If it’s saying—this is good for you, then go for it! If it says, this is bad for you or you know you shouldn’t be eating this, then make your choice with full awareness. It’s the hidden fats, sugars and chemicals that are killing us.
On your next meal or snack, repeat the 5 steps above. You can be exponentially healthier by just adding ONE ingredient to your diet…Mindfulness.
UGottaEat...So Eat mindfully. That’s all I’m sayin’.