Yes, when you eat slowly, you are engaging in a process to lower stress hormones, stress response, and you’re creating peaceful emotional state that will create an environment allowing your health to thrive.
Almost all of my IBS issues disappeared when I slowed down and started chewing more and eating mindfully. How do you eat? Do you know if you’re stressed when you eat normally? Are you in a rush normally when eating meals? Your saliva has powerful enzymes to break down food and aide in digestion. The increase of chewing also increases dental health
Rules of the 25 Minute Meal:
- You can eat anything you want.
- Watch the clock and see how long it takes you to eat a meal normally. Write it down.
- On your next meal, spend 5 extra minutes to eat the meal.
- Write down how many minutes after starting that you start to feel full and satisfied.
- Keep increasing each meal by 5 minutes until you are spending at least 25 minutes per meal. Do you feel better eating slower?
Training the Brain to Eat
There is a constant stream of stress in our body and feeds our stress hormones. This causes 80% of health problems. We can weaken the neuro transmitters that are wired for stress and cause anxiety, depression, overeating, and other unhealthy habits. It is not enough to only “think differently”. We need to get to the emotional root buried in our subconscious and help change this root pattern.
Putting Your Fork Down
Is it common for you to let go of your fork while you are eating and place it down between bites? This is a simple way to slow down your eating and aide your digestion. Try placing your fork down on the plate about 3 times during a meal. This is an effective trick to help slow the eating process. If you eat too quickly, your body doesn’t have time to digest and send the message that you are already full.
Breathing Between Bites
Breathing speeds up your digestion. When you exercise, you are increasing the intake of oxygen, which helps burn fat. Calmly take a few conscious breaths while eating.
Be a Sensual Eater
When you slow down and eat more with your senses, you are triggering your dopamine reaction, which is your “pleasure center. If you eat too quickly, this doesn’t happen so the natural reaction is to “eat more” to trigger than dopamine reaction until you are “satisfied”.
I’m explaining ways of increasing “awareness” while you eat. You are missing 30-40% of your digestive power if don’t slow down, become more aware, and reduce stress while eating. There is a cephalic digestive response that is engaged during healthy eating and this maximizes our nutritional input from foods.
You can engage your sensations more fully while eating. First, turn off your electronic devices such as TV, radio, phone, etc. Now, pay attention of the diversity of tastes involved with the food you are chewing. How does it smell? Are there any pleasant sounds while you are eating? What is the texture of your food? These are some things to consider while eating and engaging your eating process more mindfully.
Checking In Before You Eat
Next time you’re about to eat, check in with yourself. How do you feel? Are you stressed? Are you comfortable? Are you eating because you are hungry or is food a way for you to “check out” of the daily stresses? These are things to ask next time you sit down for a meal.
Hopefully, some of these strategies will help you create quality digestion and maximum bowel health. This can alter your life dramatically since your gut is connected holistically to your overall well-being. Your gut is your center and it’s an intelligent, complex system integrated with your emotions and thinking processes.