Slow Living: Why Eating Slowly Is As Important As What You Eat
As fast is furious, slow is sexy. Also, slow is mindful, satiating, and healthy.I don’t know about you, but for the longest time, I was known as the ‘food inhaler’. Put a plate of food in front of me, and I’d gobble it up faster than you could say ‘gobble’. Ok, that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but you know what I mean. Then came a day when I decided to lose weight. I started eating right and working out regularly, but even after a few months, there wasn’t a discernible difference. At the recommendation of a friend, I spoke to a nutritionist, where I learnt that the number 1 reason I wasn’t able to cut down on the kilos was because of my speed of eating! If you’re as surprised as I was, read on! Benefits of eating slowly:
- Feeling of satiety – It takes 20 minutes for your stomach to be able to signal to your brain that it is full. When you eat fast, you tend to overeat. That not only makes you feel stuffed and uncomfortable, but it can also cause bloating, gas, stomach cramps, and weight gain.
- Better digestion – Eating slowly gives your digestive system the chance to do its work properly. Taking your time to eat also means that you’re chewing your food properly, which, again, means improved digestion, better absorption of nutrients, decreased flatulence, and better skin!
- Less calorie intake – Studies show that eating slowly translates to smaller portions. This is probably because you know when you’re getting full, and can regulate your portions accordingly. Another interesting point to note here is that most people who eat quickly feel hungrier through the day than their slow-eating counterparts.
- Better satisfaction – If you eat slowly and take the time to savour, taste, and feel each bite, you feel more relaxed and happy. Involving all your senses in the process of eating will make you feel more satisfied, satiated, and less stressed. Mindful eating feeds your body, as well as your soul. What’s not to love?
- Don’t stay hungry for long. Try and eat every 3-4 hours.
- Be mindful when you’re eating. Know that your goal is to take smaller bites, chew more, and to take more time finishing your meal than you’ve ever done before.
- Keep distractions away. Switch the TV off, keep your phone away, and relax. Use candles and soft music, if that helps. If you have to watch TV, make sure you watch something relaxing, as opposed to stressful. Try and make your meal last for a whole half an hour episode.
- Count your chews. As you realise how little you chew your food, you’ll be motivated to increase that amount.
- Put your spoon or fork down between bites. Another great tip is to use smaller plates and cutlery.
- Try and eat food that has a variety of tastes and textures. You will feel more inclined to savour it all before swallowing.