Mindful eating techniques and principles for an optimal diet

The concept of mindfulness is being heard more and more among followers of good nutrition and healthy lifestyles. Conscious choice, lucid dreams and lucid diet as part of the life of a person who enjoys every moment. Psychologists and philosophers argue that having realized yourself and your life “here and now” you can really find harmony with yourself, it is enough to stop mentally and connect the feelings.

Nutritionists say there are no bad foods if you eat wisely. At the same time, it is not necessary to obsess, to turn on the mind to calculate the caloric content of the daily diet, but to be aware of what we eat, connecting the five senses: hearing, sight, smell, touch and taste. . It sounds abstract, but it’s worth trying mindful eating once to see how basic it is.

If you strive to adjust the body to function properly, reduce the number of servings and forget about gastritis, then the article is extremely relevant! You will also learn:

  • the emergence of an approach, ideology;
  • the principles of the method;
  • eat and exercise consciously;
  • literature on the subject.

How did mindful eating come about?

Conscious eating is based on the classic principles of diet and eating behavior. The starting point was given by psychotherapists and nutritionists who seriously thought about the causes of eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia.

Lifestyle and rhythm of life made a person forget the elementary skills of healthy eating behavior, forcing without thinking, eating snacks on the go, overeating under the influence of emotions. This behavior leads to obesity, chronic gastritis, ulcers or diabetes, and is fraught with neuroses.

However, nothing is impossible and symptoms can be avoided by practicing mindful eating; it is a smart option to connect the five senses:

  • taste;
  • view;
  • play;
  • sense of smell;
  • listening.

The modern lifestyle has made people forget all healthy eating habits and now we eat without thinking, leading to obesity and chronic diseases.

Mindful eating technique

Before you start eating, it is important to see enough of the plate and even smell it. Consider a product or dish: its color, texture, inhale the aroma. Then take a small piece and start chewing it slowly.

Keep track of your taste sensations – all the notes and tastes of food – the creamy sweetness of a banana, the texture of cheese, and crisp, juicy greens. Savor the taste of food, gradually sinking into gastronomic pleasure. Okay, with this approach, is it difficult to start swallowing such a tempting dish in large chunks without chewing?

This mindful eating technique can help you end mindless binges. After all, this is usually the reason for overeating – we don’t enjoy food, but simply strive to fill our stomachs faster.

How does mindful eating work?

Eating small meals and chewing slowly allows the brain to receive information about satiety, while fast eating drowns out this signal. The body needs time to understand what has been eaten, about 20-25 minutes after eating. Having swallowed even a large plate in a couple of minutes, the probability of leaving the table hungry is incredibly high.

With a conscious attitude towards food, the value of food increases. As a result, the skills to understand the products, to get more pleasure from even a small piece. Scientists have shown that the pleasure of food depends largely on its anticipation, and the smell and appearance of appetizing dishes stimulate the production of dopamine, the pleasure hormone.

The enjoyment of food slows down the process of eating, which promotes good digestion and normalization of weight. The ability to recognize the moment of saturation is formed, therefore, thanks to the method, it turns out to eat less, to control the calorie content of the diet.

Basic principles

As you practice mindful eating, these principles can help you make smart decisions:

  • 1. Don’t be distracted.

Concentration is at the heart of focus. It is important to focus on one action, so it is necessary to eliminate annoying factors: turn off the television, radio, hang up the phone. The focus is solely on the food, nothing else. Ignoring sensations, conversations, television programs involuntarily force a person to eat more, ignoring their true food needs.

  • 2. Eat slowly, in small portions.

Chewing slowly, the desire to listen to the sensations helps to recognize the taste of food, to capture the texture. When swallowing, it is recommended to visualize, feel the entry of food into the esophagus. Forced slowness takes control of the degree of satiety, excluding overeating. An additional tool is an assessment of the level of hunger on a scale of 0 to 10. The procedure is performed before and after meals.

  • 3. Reject ratings, tags.

The evaluation of food is fraught with the awakening of guilt over what you have eaten: blame for the doddle, an extra spoonful of sugar in your tea. The division of foods into “bad” and “good” gives rise to stereotypes that lead to a strict framework for choosing products. This causes stressful situations, leads to breakdowns. Freeing yourself from labels will allow you to learn to determine the physiological need for food.

  • 4. Respectful attitude towards the food consumed.

It’s about the value of food. This consciousness translates the ideas of the Buddhist worldview. It requires thinking about the origin of the ingredients, where they come from, considering the colors, the texture. Thus, the consumption of food becomes a peculiar fact and not an instinctual impulse.

How to start eating mindfully?

Simple rules can help change attitudes towards food. Practice 1-2 a day.

  • the plate is filled exactly halfway with food. The additive does not occupy more than 20% of the entire plate;
  • before starting a meal, carefully look at a product or dish, as if this were happening for the first time;
  • consider the color, the shape of the product / plate. Inhale the aroma, slowly bring the first piece to your mouth, observing it carefully;
  • putting a portion in your mouth, put down the silverware, focus on chewing. For a complete immersion in the feelings, you can close your eyes;
  • track feelings: what smells, sounds, tastes, textures do you feel? How does the taste change when chewing?

Each point is given at least 20 seconds. Over time, mindful eating takes about 25 minutes.

Basic eating habits

It is allowed to consume almost all healthy foods, the main condition is a deliberate nutritional process. It is recommended to focus on any vegetables and fruits, whole wheat bread, whole grains, oats, grains and legumes, tofu, nuts, tea, coffee, soy milk.



Oats (oats)
  • 150 grams. Add apple and cinnamon
  • 71 Kcal
  • 2.5 proteins, gr
  • 1.5 fat, gr
  • 12 carbohydrates, gr


  • 71 Kcal
  • 2.5 proteins, gr
  • 1.5 fat, gr
  • 12 carbohydrates, gr


Dry dams
  • 150 g
  • 361.5 Kcal
  • 5.1 proteins, gr
  • 0.8 fat, gr
  • 93.9 carbohydrates, gr


  • 361.5 Kcal
  • 5.1 proteins, gr
  • 0.8 fat, gr
  • 93.9 carbohydrates, gr


Red beans
  • 150 grams of bean burritos, lettuce leaves, salsa sauce and thick flour tortilla.
  • 337 Kcal
  • 22.6 proteins, gr
  • 1.1 fat, gr
  • 61.3 carbohydrates, gr


  • 337 Kcal
  • 22.6 proteins, gr
  • 1.1 fat, gr
  • 61.3 carbohydrates, gr


  • 70 grams
  • 71 Kcal
  • 5.7 proteins, gr
  • 1.2 fat, gr
  • carbohydrates, gr
  • 1 pc.
  • 89 Kcal
  • 1.1 proteins, gr
  • 0.3 fat, gr
  • 22.9 carbohydrates, gr

Afternoon snack

  • 160 Kcal
  • 6.8 proteins, gr
  • 1.5 fat, gr
  • 29.9 carbohydrates, gr


Brown rice (long grain)
  • 150 grams. Add the tofu cheese and vegetables.
  • 111 Kcal
  • 2.6 proteins, gr
  • 0.9 fat, gr
  • 23 carbohydrates, gr


  • 111 Kcal
  • 2.6 proteins, gr
  • 0.9 fat, gr
  • 23 carbohydrates, gr


  • 1040.5 Kcal
  • 39.6 proteins, gr
  • 5.9 fat, gr
  • 220.1 carbohydrates, gr

Cross off fast food, sweet and starchy foods, fatty foods (especially meat products), alcohol, and sugary carbonated beverages from your menu. These foods and drinks are high in unhealthy fats, and worst of all, they clog blood vessels, muffle the palate, and lead to obesity.

The frequency of meals is 3-5 times a day in small portions. You can (and should!) Eat this way your entire life. In fact, a conscious diet is not a diet in the generally accepted sense of the word, but if you are overweight in the first few months, your body weight will normalize.

The Road to Mindful Eating: The Transition Steps

The sequential transition from strenuous diets consists of four steps:

Stage I: eat when you’re hungry Stage II: eat until full
Track hunger by separating the real from the imaginary. A false feeling leads to breakdowns, so it is recommended to be distracted: do squats, drink water, do your favorite leisure. Remember the condition of rejecting labels, thus the postulate of “slight hunger when leaving the table” disappears. This allows you to avoid spontaneous snacks, breakdowns.
Stage III: eat tasty Stage IV: there is something useful
Calling dark chocolate your favorite just because it is supposedly more useful is often a misperception, rather than a matter of voluntary choice. By identifying your truly favorite foods, the risk of overeating is greatly reduced.

It is recommended to forget about alternative products to the “wrong” ingredients. When you want to eat sweets, then eat sweets, not an apple, nuts, or flatbread.

The step does not contradict the previous one. When the ability to feel one’s own needs is sufficiently developed, the obsession with forbidden foods disappears.

Choosing comfortable foods for easy digestion takes precedence over addiction and junk food cravings.

By the way, this diet is perfect for vegetarians. Adding meat, fish, eggs to the diet will form a complete and healthy menu.


  • Fast food;
  • sugar, sugar-containing products;
  • flour products;
  • fatty food;
  • alcohol, sugary carbonated drinks.

The frequency of meals is double the method of fractional meals and is 3-5 times a day in small portions. In fact, a conscious diet is not a diet in the generally accepted sense of the word, it is suitable for lifelong practice. An additional advantage: with excess weight in the first months, the body weight will normalize.

The benefits of mindfulness in nutrition

By practicing the Buddhist approach to the problem, several effects are achieved:

  • a great option to start meditative practice;
  • development of concentration due to systematic attention to meals;
  • improve the assimilation of consumed food – diligent chewing facilitates the work of the digestive tract;
  • lose weight – focus on the process, focus on feeling full reduces the risk of overeating;
  • self-knowledge: the modernization of habitual processes opens the eyes to personal preferences, perception. This is a great opportunity to look at yourself from the unknown side, develop creative skills, creativity;
  • prevention of eating disorders – in the presence of a problem, there is awareness, acceptance, the desire to fight the disease.

Categories: training