Research-Backed Tips For Mindful Eating

A growing body of research is in full support of mindful eating. Enjoying your food slowly and consciously improves mood, lowers cortisol levels, and results in healthier diets and weight loss. And that’s only the tip of the research.

How do you eat mindfully? Nutritionists, scientists, and psychologists have all proposed several methods. Even a handful of these tips–eating slowly, dining differently, distinguishing hunger from cravings–can transform your mood and health. Here are the most scientifically supported mindful eating techniques for a happier mealtime.

The Basics Of Mindful Eating

Mindfulness is the mental state of focusing on the moment and being aware of your thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations. According to Transcultural Psychology, the practice extended from Burmese Buddhism and is now used in therapy programs such as dialectic behavioral therapy (DBT).

Members of the British Royal Navy eat lunch on board the HMS Montrose frigate
Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images
Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images

Eating mindfully entails: distinguishing between real hunger and non-hunger queues to eat; eating without distraction; deciding when you’re full; noticing the experience of eating. Not only does mindful eating train you to listen to your body, but it also lowers anxiety and stress surrounding eating.