Wellness Pathway #233 Eat Attentively

In my Wellness Pathway titled “Drive Attentively, I was writing about mindfulness to encourage you to avoid a most common cause of injury and death — automobile accidents. Here I want to apply mindfulness to another common cause of injury, disease, and death — obesity. By eating attentively we can overcome the urge to overeat in order to reach and to maintain our optimum body weight.

The impetus for this Pathway was the recent decision by the U.S. Medicare program to start providing coverage for weight-loss therapies, including stomach surgery, diet programs, and behavioral as well as psychological counseling. Given that stomach surgery alone can cost between $30,000 to $50,000, one begins to appreciate just how much it must cost to treat the health problems which stem from obesity.

What if everyone was given $50,000 for maintaining their optimum body weight over a period of years (say $5,000 every 5 years for 50 years)? That, in my estimation, would be money better spent than stomach surgery. But would you be able to do it, even with that much of an incentive? And how would you go about it?

Eating attentively is a good place to start. As with driving, multitasking leads to mindless eating and an increased incidence of accidents involving both the quantity and quality of our food. Don’t let that happen to you! When you eat, eat. Don’t eat and read or watch TV or do anything else. Just enjoy your food, whether you are alone or in the company of family and friends.

Slow down. Savor every bite. By chewing our food slowly and thoroughly, we give our body the chance to feel satisfied before we have overeaten. By eating attentively we enhance our natural appetite control. By actually experiencing our food we minimize the unconscious, mindless eating that causes us to put on weight in the first place.

Coaching Inquiries: Do you eat attentively? Could you avoid doing other things while you eat? What would it be like to chew every mouthful at least 20 times? How could mindful eating become a regular part of your routine?

To reply to this Pathway, use our Feedback Form. To learn more about our Wellness Coaching programs and to arrange for a complimentary wellness coaching session, use our Contact Form or Email Bob.

May you be filled with goodness, peace, and joy.

Bob Tschannen-Moran

President, LifeTrek Coaching Internationalwww.LifeTrekCoaching.com
CEO & Co-Founder, Center for School Transformationwww.SchoolTransformation.com
2010-2011 President, International Association of Coachingwww.CertifiedCoach.org

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