I can’t tell you how long I’ve been wanting to write a post on mindful eating for. But every time I sat down to write it I felt like a hypocrite. My relationship with food was anything but mindful. In my mind, eating mindfully could help me to lose weight. Recently I watched a documentary called “Hungry for Change” on Netflix that made me realise my thoughts on mindful eating were completely misplaced. You can watch the trailer here.
I realised that mindful eating meant eating food that will genuinely help to nourish and strengthen my body. The documentary explained how these days people are over fed but they are starving on a nutritional basis. Food is so widely available, but often it is the wrong kind of food. Most of us know what counts as food that is bad for us, so why do we continue to eat it?
The short answer is – the food industry are very good at their job. They know exactly how to make their food look attractive and how to appeal to us both physiologically and psychologically. The food companies are especially good at making us go into the “once you pop you just can’t stop” mindset. Junk food such as Coke or Doritos have complex formulas that taste good enough to be alluring but they don’t actually have a distinct, overriding flavor and this leads to the brain not giving signals to stop eating.
Understanding that these foods are literally engineered for us to binge on them (leading to big profits for the food companies, but poor health for us) was like some sort of epiphany for me. I realise that this might be obvious to some, but personally, I would sometimes pig out on junk food and then afterwards I would feel incredibly guilty and genuinely confused about why I was eating the way I was, especially as I knew how bad these foods were for me. But watching this documentary helped to provide me with some answers.
What I loved about the Hungry for Change documentary, was that it gave useful tips on how to improve our health and to ensure we are getting the nourishment we need. Here are some of my favourite tips that I’ve started to implement over this past week. No word of a lie, I am genuinely starting to see the benefits in the way I am feeling.
- Bin the “I can’t have it” attitude – For any one that’s ever been on a diet you’ll recognise the feeling of “I can’t have that, I’m on a diet” the nutritionists on the show recommend changing the mindset to “what can I add to my diet?”. This has worked well for me so far, trying to add veg and healthy snacks has been working well and has led naturally to me having barely any junk food without feeling deprived.
- Start juicing – some people might ask why bother to juice fruit and veg when you can just eat them? Well the point is for me especially, I just don’t eat enough of them! So juicing has been such a good way of helping me to get the vitamins I need and I’ve really enjoyed making all of the different juices. I was a bit wary about buying a juicer as I know they can be expensive, but I found one within my budget (you can find it here) and I’m really impressed with it so far! I’d definitely recommend it.
- Throw away your sugar & sweeteners – One of the first things I did after watching this documentary was to throw away our sugar and sweeteners. After learning about how much is already added to our food, I thought I need to do something! So no more sweeteners in my tea and no more sugar on my porridge! So far I’m not missing it, so this has been a really simple change.
- Try adding chia seeds or aloe vera to your diet – these foods are naturally gelatinous and can really help to aid digestion. I recently bought some chia seeds to see what they were like (I got mine here) and have been adding them to my juices and my porridge. They don’t really taste of anything in my opinion, but my tummy is definitely less bloated (which I appreciate could be from a combination of all these things above). The lady in the shop said you only need to use a teaspoon at a time so I’m going to carry on with them and see how I get on 🙂
So there we have it, these are some of the main things I have been implementing since watching the Hungry for Change documentary and I am definitely starting to feel the benefit both physically and mentally. It feels great being mindful about what I’m eating and I feel really empowered when choosing not to have things like chocolate not because I can’t but because I don’t want it.
Have you seen this documentary? What did you think? Do you have any more tips for me on how to eat mindfully? Or maybe you have some great juicing recipes that you swear by? I’d love to hear from you, so please do get in touch and share your blog with me if you have one.
For more information: