The holiday season is often filled with a multitude of food-centered traditions. Mindful eating is a skill that can help you develop a positive relationship with food, without meaning that you have to avoid the foods that you enjoy. Here are some helpful tips to help you incorporate mindful eating throughout this holiday season:

Eat regularly

Stick to your normal eating schedule, respecting your body’s individual needs and provide nourishment regularly. This will help you to stay ahead of your hunger and avoid overindulging on holiday treats. 

Allow yourself to enjoy the foods that you love, without the guilt

All foods have a place if you keep in mind balance, variety and moderation. It is important to not deprive yourself of the foods that truly satisfy and nourish you. 

Slow down and enjoy every bite as though it is the first one

Chewing each bite thoroughly allows for enjoyment and savoring of the flavors of the food. It also allows signals of fullness to reach the stomach, which you may miss when you eat too quickly. 

Check in with yourself

Practice taking a moment to rate your physical hunger and satiety cues. This can be very helpful at special events to help you guide to eat only until you are satisfied, not stuffed.

For more information, contact Bastyr Center for Natural Health at (206) 834-4100 to schedule a nutrition appointment.

— By Joanna Swain, Bastyr dietetic intern, and Amy Frasieur, MS, RD, core faculty in the Department of Nutrition and Exercise Science at Bastyr University.