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Five Tips for Conscious Eating

Food

Make eating a truly enjoyable and fully satisfying experience.

Eat When You’re Hungry
We’re used to eating for a variety of reasons that have little to do with physical hunger, such as avoiding stress, pacifying emotions, or overcoming boredom. Make it your goal to recognize true hunger and eat only when you experience its signals.

Relax Briefly Before Eating
The hunger that you experience when tense or upset is not true hunger. It is mentally induced, designed to provide an outlet for nervousness and tension. Take a few moments before a meal to relax and recognize your body’s signals about what and how much to eat.

Eat in a Pleasant Atmosphere
Make the place where you eat attractive and just for eating. Create a relaxing environment by setting a clean, uncluttered table, lighting candles, or putting flowers on the table. At the very least, invite yourself to sit down to eat, rather than eat standing or on the run.

Concentrate on Chewing
Concentrating on chewing helps you to digest your food and to derive the fullest satisfaction from it.

Accept Your Lapses from Conscious Eating
Everyone sometimes eats too much, too little, too quickly, or too absentmindedly. Don’t make it a big deal; respond with humor and understanding, using lapses as learning opportunities to help you move toward your goal of appreciating your food.


"Five Tips for Conscious Eating" is excerpted from The Kripalu Cookbook: Gourmet Vegetarian Recipes, by Atma Jo Ann Levitt (Berkshire House Publishers). Available through the Kripalu Shop.