How to Make Mindful Eating Part of Your Weight Loss Plan
How much do you think about what you eat? The weight loss industry has a phrase that is becoming more prevalent among consumers, as well – mindful eating. It is a common sense approach to meeting your weight loss goals and learning to better your relationship with food. Get educated about mindful eating and find ways to incorporate it into your healthy lifestyle.
What is Mindful Eating?
To put it simply, mindful eating means you stay in the moment when you have a meal. It is easy to get caught up in a busy life. Many people use this time to plan their schedules, consider things that are going on in their day or think about something other than food.
Mindful eating is a weight loss strategy that teaches you to focus on the food going into your mouth and push everything else to the side. What does that soup taste like? Is it salty or sweet? Does the broth feel smooth on your tongue?
The key to successful, conscious eating is to experience every bite using all your senses. It is a purposeful approach to enjoying a meal.
A Mindful Eating Experiment
Next time you sit down at the dinner table or have a snack, conduct a little experiment. Put a forkful of food in your mouth and just hold it on your tongue. Now work through all of your senses to describe it.
- What does it taste like? What is the primary flavor? Are there any secondary flavors?
- How about the smell?
- What does it feel like on your tongue? Soup will feel different than spaghetti, for instance. Take a minute and appreciate the texture of the bite.
As you analyze the bite of food evoking all your senses, put the fork down, so you are not tempted to take another bite. Natural human instinct compels you to shovel in food like you may never see another meal.
What is the Purpose of Mindful Eating?
If you eat a sandwich in three quick bites, your body feels cheated. It registers that you didn’t take the time to enjoy the food, so it pushes you to get more. The longer it takes to eat, the fuller you feel and less likely you are to reach for seconds. With mindful eating, you are relaxed and happy, and your body understands you have eaten enough for now.
Effective, long term weight loss requires you to break bad habits. Mindful eating is a tool you can use to retrain how you, and your body, think about food.
Creating SMART Weight Loss Goals
“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.” -Tony Robbins
Medical weight loss can help you reach your goal weight, but it will take time to achieve this important objective. As you gradually make progress towards your goal weight, setting smaller goals can help you plan out your path to success and stay motivated along the way.
Understanding Weight Loss Plateaus
Sometimes after a period of steady weight loss, the scale stops moving. Without making any conscious changes to your diet and exercise habits, your weight loss halts. This is known as a weight loss plateau.
In nature, a plateau is a flat and expansive piece of land that contrasts with the surrounding landscape. During your weight loss program, a plateau can be a frustrating period that may test your will to continue striving toward your ultimate weight loss goal.
Through advertising, bulk packaging and ever increasing meal sizes, perceptions of portions and serving sizes have become skewed.
A TV commercial will pan across the image of a whole pizza, breadsticks, a two-liter of soda and usually a large dessert. The pizza alone averages around 2,000 calories, so the calories represented in a single commercial far outweigh the average recommended daily allowance of calories. In contrast, a single slice of pizza contains around 250 calories.
Keeping Hydrated for Your Health
Staying hydrated throughout your day is one of the healthiest lifestyle changes you can make. Proper hydration habits can reduce your risk of heat-related injury, benefit heart health, boost your metabolism and give you more energy throughout the day.
Preventing Regain after Weight Loss
Medical weight loss can give you the tools you need to lose weight and keep it off, but sometimes no matter how closely you follow a program a slip-up leading to weight regain can happen. It’s almost inevitable, and it’s nothing to beat yourself up about.
It’s important to be able to take personal responsibility for any slip-ups. If you’ve regained weight, it’s possible that it was your body adjusting to all of the lifestyle changes you’ve been making.
Stress and Weight Loss
As you go through your medical weight loss program in Scottsdale, it’s important that you learn to manage any health problems that may affect your weight loss, such as stress. Stress is the body’s neurological response to events in life that make you feel pressured, threatened, upset or anxious. Believe it or not, stress is meant to help you. When managed properly, stress can motivate you to perform well under pressure. However, if you find yourself in a constant stressful state or if you don’t know how to deal with stress, it can take a toll on your overall health, especially if you’re trying to lose weight through medical weight loss.
Healthy Sleep Habits during Medical Weight Loss
Getting enough sleep is an integral part of any medical weight loss program. If you aren’t well rested, it can make losing weight more difficult than it needs to be. If you’re excessively tired during the day, sticking to even the simplest of exercise routines can be a chore. To get the most out of your medical weight loss program, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting at least eight hours of uninterrupted, quality sleep every night.
Handling Setbacks during Weight Loss
When it comes to losing weight, the journey may sometimes seem a bit overwhelming; especially if you have been struggling with your weight for a long time, without any results. Medical weight loss is a great way of encouraging long-term weight loss and lifestyle changes with the help of your physician and weight loss team. However, like any endeavor, you can’t begin your weight loss program believing that you have found a “miracle cure” to your weight and health concerns. Even with a great support team, your weight loss journey may not be totally smooth all the time.