For years, I have been involved in practices that teach mindfulness: martial arts, meditation, massage therapy, acupuncture, qi gong, yoga... And yet, I've had an awfully hard time bringing it into my life, particularly into my eating.
I am a wolfer. I come from a big family, and if you didn't want someone to steal off of your plate, you'd better eat all your food... and FAST! This era of my life still manifests itself in my eating posture: hunched over my plate, my left hand protectively held around my dish, my right hand holding the fork in full shoveling mode.
For years, I've eaten microwave dinners in front of the TV. 10 minutes is a really long time for me to eat; usually it's more like 5 to 7. I have also always been extremely hungry very suddenly, so anything that took more than 10 minutes to prepare was out.
However, lately I’ve been cooking my own food, which gives me a greater connection to my food. I appreciate what I make more, so I pay attention more, savoring the flavors, wondering what other spices I could use or what I can pair with it next time.
I eat more fat and protein which avoids the carb crash that results in: “I’m not hungry at all..... Wait a minute. Ack! I’m hungry! NEED FOOD NOW!!!!” Because of this I can plan my meals, and create something really wonderful.
Someone told me once that food isn't just about nourishing the body; it nourishes the soul. I am finding more and more that by bringing my attention to my food and eat more mindfully, it does just that. Food tastes better and is far more satisfying if you are "there" while you're eating it. This idea impacts the food choices I make, and also my relationship with the foods that I DO choose to eat.
I do still eat quickly....... but I'm working on that.