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Mindful Monday- Eating Mindfully to Lose Weight

Mindful Monday

For me, being mindful encompasses the act of being watchful, aware, wary, heedful, alert, careful, or attentive, in whatever area in my life I feel it applies to.  On this Mindful Monday, I need to revisit  my path towards eating with a more mindful attitude.

mindful eating

(Image credit: Huffingtonpost)

I struggle with my weight, that is a fact.  I was a “chunky kid” and my weight problems followed me into adulthood.  Now that I am in the over-fifty crowd, my weight loss issues are still hard to cope with.  Sound familiar?  Read on…

Several years ago I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and had to have my thyroid removed.  The end result is that I must use a synthetic thyroid hormone to balance my metabolism, heart rate, and brain function.  Your thyroid affects so much of your internal chemistry it is mind-boggling.  One thing I do know, is that if I put my mind to it – I can lose weight.  Just because I have a thyroid problem does not mean that I cannot lose, it is just harder to do.

I recently read an excellent article by Dr. Susan Albers called, “The Surprising Benefits of Mindful Eating.”  Dr. Albers says the main problem regarding weight loss and overeating, (or under-eating) is that we have lost how to recognize when we are full.  The connection between our hunger and feeling full registering in our brain has been disrupted.

physical.emotional hunger

(Image Credit: The Londoner.me)

We do have the ability to correct this malfunction if we follow Dr. Albers’ four mindful points quoted below:

“The Four Mindful Points: Check in with each dimension of mindfulness.

When you eat, ask yourself these questions:

  • a. Mind: Am I tasting each bite or am I zoned out when I eat? (You can download the awareness checklist here.)
  • Body: How does my body feel before and after I eat? Low energy? Stomach rumbling? Full? Empty?
  • c. Feeling: What do I feel about this food? Guilty? Pleasure? Joy? Disappointment? Regret?
  • d. Thoughts: What thoughts does this food bring to mind? Memories? Beliefs? Myths? Fears?”
  •  

    The answers to these questions will make you aware of your eating behaviors.  I have started a weight loss journal in a spiral notebook, where I list the foods that I eat each day and their corresponding Weight Watchers Points Plus values.

    At the same time, if I come up against cravings, I have been asking myself Dr. Albers 4 questions.  I have actually been able to walk away from some of the cravings because I recognized that I was bored, and not really hungry.

    More mindful eating

    (Image Credit: SkinnyMom)

    I know I have shared before that when I eat with chopsticks it forces me to slow down and take my time.  My other issue with weight loss and eating mindfully is to concentrate on drinking enough fluids.  Many times we think we are hungry, but instead we are thirsty.  It is always better to drink water first to see if your hunger will abate.

    To help motivate us this week, I found the following 40 Mindful Eating Mantras courtesy of Dr. Ablers:

    mindful eating mantras

  • I love the last one:  EAT, DRINK, & BE MINDFUL. You can download Dr. Albers 40 Mantras here.

    What are your mindful goals this week?

    Remember, this is not a challenge.  This is an offering of support.  If you would like to join in with your own Mindful Monday goals you can do so in the comments, or on a separate post of your own making.  If you want to link back to my post, please feel free to do so however, it is not necessary.  My main objective here is to give and get support to become more mindful of the things I take for granted in life.

    Peace and Joy to everyone this week,Silver Threading signature

 

About Colleen M. Chesebro

Colleen M. Chesebro is an American Novelist & Poet who loves writing paranormal fantasy and magical realism, cross-genre fiction, syllabic poetry, and creative nonfiction. She loves all things magical which may mean that she could be experiencing her second childhood—or not. That part of her life hasn’t been fully decided yet. A few years ago, a mystical experience led her to renew her passion for writing and storytelling. These days she resides in the fantasy realm of the Faery Writer where she writes the magical poetry and stories that the fairy nymphs whisper to her in her dreams. Colleen won the “Little and Laugh” Flash Fiction Contest sponsored by the Carrot Ranch Literary Community on November 2017, and in 2018, she won first place for the “Twisted Travel” category. Colleen lives in Arizona with her husband. When she is not writing, Colleen enjoys spending time with her husband. She also loves gardening, reading, and crocheting old-fashioned doilies into works of art. Learn more about Colleen on colleenchesebro.com.
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23 Comments

  1. First of all, thank you for sharing your personal experiences with us….And also, thanks for another amazing Mindful Monday post! This is so important…I actually ate dinner tonight with this in mind — enjoying each bite and not focusing on other things that would take away from the dining experience!
    Plus, H20 is my new friend! I find myself craving water which I hadn’t done in the past…
    Thanks again and have a great start to the week!
    Lia

  2. Mindful eating is essential to everyone…thanks for the reminder… 🙂

  3. Ah..so many battles, so little time ! Spent the first 20 years trying to gain weight…which was a huge challenge, contrary to what people think. Had about 2 decades really comfortable, then body changes with the big “M” had me trying to lose. I got rid of my scale and live happily in my ignorance. (at least until the annual physical). Best of luck in your journey to wellness. ☺ Van

    • Thank you for sharing Van. It really is about being healthy. I started out a few years ago at 225 lbs.!!! I lost 55 lbs. and have gained back 10. I feel better and my body operates better when I am about 10 lbs. lighter. My issue is that I gave myself permission to cheat. For me that is a recipe for disaster. Now to get healthy again and be good. Thanks for your support. <3

  4. We have emotions because of our own needs which may or may not be fulfilled, so we have to be responsible on them, then we could communicate peacefully especially to ourselves to be mindful. :))

    • It took me a long time to identify that I was overeating due to boredom. I have been telling myself that I do not have my permission to eat more than I need to. That took a long time and I still work on it. Writing those emotions down in my food journal really helped me to address the problem. Thank you for reminding me to always take responsibility for my actions. 🙂

  5. Colleen, you are not alone. I am battling the over sixty weight gain, but loosing weight at any age is not easy. Thanks for the tips on mindful eating, now I just need to put them into practice.

  6. I too have to take daily thyroxine to keep me going, Colleen. I struggle with my weight, but try to keep on top of it.
    I should be as thin as a rake, with the amount of sleeping I do. LOL! 🙂
    Another great article my friend. It’s always a joy to visit your blog. :}

  7. I’ve read that doing some exercise first thing in the morning and having a good breakfast afterwards also kicks the metabolism into gear. Thanks for the reminder about mindful eating Colleen and happy week.

  8. Good on you for being mindful… it is a beautiful habit to have in all aspects of our life. 🙂

  9. This couldn’t have come at a better time for me Colleen, I have been revving myself up for a healthier lifestyle. I often think blogging is bad for me, I eat mindlessly and drink far too much wine whilst at the computer!
    Thanks for all the great info & links here. Wishing you lots of luck this week as you begin your goal

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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