Northeastern University Dining Services Blog

Friday, March 10, 2017

Mindful Eating: Be in the moment!

Mindfulness is about paying attention. Mindfulness promotes balance, choice, wisdom and acceptance.1 Mindful eating has benefits that will enhance health and well-being. Mindful eating also allows you to be more aware of physical hunger and fullness (satiety) cues to help determine when to begin and when to stop eating. 

Although the trend these days is to eat while working, watching TV, playing video games, or even texting. This type of behavior may result in eating carelessly and more often you may not be aware of feelings fullness, which could result in taking in extra calories that may contribute to future weight gain. Health and proper nutrition may be forgotten while this type of convenience is practiced. 

Some tips to help guide you to more mindful eating:
  1. Prepare meals or at the very least think about meals ahead of time. Take time to think about and/or prepare the following day’s meals. When you are busy this can take extra time, but it is worth it.  
  2. Allow 15-20 minutes or even longer for meal times.  Eat while sitting down and start to concentrate on the flavor, texture, chewing, and finally swallowing of foods. This might sound like a lot to do, but it will help you become more aware and result in enjoying your food- as food should be enjoyed! 
  3. Avoid reading, watching T.V., or driving while eating. These activities while eating will distract you from being mindful at a meal or snack.
  4. Try taking a deep breath before and after meals, this can help you to focus on the meal in front of you.
  5. Choose portions/serving sizes adequate for your individual needs. Wait about 10-20 minutes for food to begin to digest and the feeling of fullness to set in, before going for seconds or reaching for something else.
Mindfulness begins with focusing on one task at a time such as eating a meal. The best way to stay mindful is to focus on the current task (eating a meal).  Mindfulness can have a direct positive effect on your overall health and well-being!

Check out this handout from the Center of Mindfulness to learn other strategies. 

  1. Principles of Mindful Eating. Retrieved March 7, 2017 from:


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