When was the last time you ate at home, alone, in a quiet room, with enough time to enjoy your meal at a leisurely pace? Can’t remember? Me neither.
For most people, dining out and eating on the go are facts of life. But this doesn’t mean we have to give up healthy practices like mindful (or intuitive) eating. Mindful eating means bringing more awareness to your experience of eating. This involves eating with all five senses, and using your internal hunger and fullness cues to guide your meal. Research shows that mindful eating can help you eat smaller portion sizes and consume fewer total calories. It can also help reduce eating due to emotions and may even help avoid harmful behaviors like binge-eating.
Though mindful eating is most easily accomplished in an environment with minimal distractions, there are small steps you can take to eat more mindfully in any situation. Use this guide to help practice eating more mindfully when you’re dining out.