5 Mindful Ways to Start Eating Better Today
“Eating is not only nourishing for the body, but also for the mind,” says Zen Master and global spiritual leader Thich Nhat Hanh. Certainly, learning how to eat well plays a part in learning how to live well.
But these days, we are so accustomed to convenience that we eat out of compulsion rather than mindfulness. It takes some focus and dedication to realign our habits, to get our tongues and bellies back into the right track. Below are some of our best ideas on how to eat better beginning today.
1. Think about where your food comes from.
It is all too easy to forget that what we put in our mouths was alive only a few moments ago. Whether animal or plant, both offers us life energy, and it took plenty of work hours from many different people to grow it so it can end up on your plate. So we must respect it.
Our food does not come out of a plastic bag or the supermarket. It comes from the farm or the sea and soil, from a living being. There is no greater gift than this that is why we must appreciate it, and at the same time, be mindful of our consumption and waste.
2. Dedicate an exclusive time for eating.
Food tastes different depending on the level of awareness that you put into eating it. Sometimes when you are in a rush, you eat a bagel with smoked salmon and cream cheese and taste nothing of it. But when you take the time to be present with your food and appreciate every bite, you become aware of the flavors and textures that turn even the simplest kind of food into something special.
3. Remember why you must eat.
We eat to get sustenance, to ensure that the body is able to run and function well. To do this, the simplest of foods can be enough. But our society and bad habits encourage us to consume too much and make the wrong choices.
Often, we buy more than what we need and end up wasting a lot of money. Instead of healthy and whole food, we fill our baskets with processed food loaded with sugar and fat. If we become more aware of why we eat, our food choices are likelier to follow that vein instead of blindly getting everything marketed in front of our face.
4. Find a balanced diet.
Being more mindful about how we eat does not mean siphoning the joy out of eating. The idea is to find balance between making healthy food choices and finding pleasure in food. It is not too hard to figure out. If you had a very green and healthy main course without any sugary drink to go with it, what is to stop you in this world from enjoying a lovely dessert that puts a big smile on your face?
5. Support sustainability efforts.
There is no going around the fact that we eat life. In one form or another, vegetarian or not, what we consume is made up of the same life we cherish. So let us be mindful of how we go about it. Let us support sustainability efforts and be proactive in learning more about where our food comes from. When consumers start to care, the producers will definitely do, too. This is the kindest thing we can do for the world.
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