How to practice mindful eating in 10 ways

Aug 17, 2023

How to practice mindful eating ?

The movement of mindful eating has recently taken over the fields of health, well-being, and nutrition. If you want to learn how to practice mindful eating in a realistic, sustainable manner, you’re in the right place.

• The purpose of mindful eating is to guide you in alignment with your body and the experience of meals, so that you can make intentional food choices based on what your body needs, what you desire, and the right balance between the two.

Research has shown that mindful eating can help with a number of food and diet-related illnesses. For instance, it can assist in treating disordered eating habits and help individuals achieve weight-related goals.


Keep reading to discover our top 10 ways to start practicing mindful eating today.

1. Eat without distractions

This means no phones, no TV, no computers, and no work. Sounds quite unusual, doesn’t it? Disrupted eating is so common today. It’s part of our culture!
When we remove all the noise and clutter that have become part of meals, we are truly just eating. This allows you to be more present and aware as you nourish yourself.

2. Eat at the table

Where do you usually eat? Have you noticed how it affects your food choices? Where you eat can impact how much you eat, how satisfied you feel afterward, and your digestion.

Try to have most of your meals and snacks at the table and notice how much more you can experience your food and connect with your body and the impact it has on your eating habits.

3. Slow down

The faster we do something, the more efficient it is, right? Well, not when it comes to eating.

When we rush through our meals, practicing mindfulness becomes nearly impossible.

When you eat mindfully, it’s important to slow down the pace of eating. Take a pause or take a deep breath between bites, then fully chew and swallow before the next bite.

Slowing down your eating not only helps you be more present but also promotes a sense of satiety and optimal digestion.

4. Don’t forget to breathe

Pause and take a breath!

This is one of my favorite recommendations for clients. Simply taking a 30-second pause before starting a meal to take a deep breath can significantly enhance your awareness.

A deep breath can even activate the parasympathetic nervous system, letting your body know you’re in a state of relaxation. No need for stress and eating on the go.

This simple practice can help you be more present while eating, aiding you in being aware of what you’re eating, why you’re eating, recognizing your hunger cues, and using your senses to enjoy the food you intend to eat.

This alone can provide you with so many small insights into your eating habits and help guide you toward what’s best for you and your body.

5. Think about the meal as you eat

Sounds so simple, doesn’t it? Yet, it’s not all that common.

When we’re thinking about what’s happening later in the day, what we’ll eat for the next meal, and that stressful conversation we had earlier, there’s no way we’re eating mindfully.

Before you know it, the meal is over, and you barely even tasted it!

Take a moment to pause and experience your food. What does it taste like? How does it look? What do you enjoy about it? What would you change next time you have that meal?

Actively thinking about your meal enables you to practice mindful eating.

6. Prepare your own meals

I’m not saying you should only eat homemade meals – that’s not realistic. Who doesn’t enjoy a tasty meal out?

But what I’m suggesting is to prepare your meals when you can. When you spend time cooking, chopping, frying, smelling, and watching your food being prepared, you’re essentially forced to be present. It puts you in the mood for eating.

It’s about awareness and intentionality. Cooking food is a wonderful way to achieve that!

7. Tune in to your hunger and fullness cues!

We talk a lot about this – to practice mindful eating, we need to listen to our bodies.

Take a moment and pause before eating – how hungry are you? After the meal, do you feel satisfied?

Ignoring hunger and fullness cues is one of the most common ways of mindless eating. This generally occurs when we eat according to a schedule or restrict portion sizes due to diets, detoxes, or cleanses. Tuning in to hunger and fullness allows you to be more mindful of portion sizes and increase satisfaction at the end of the meal.

8. Check in with your reasons for eating

When we don’t eat mindfully, we might eat in response to something unrelated to hunger. Some of the common reasons are stress, emotions, and external cues.

By checking in before eating, you can ensure that you’re truly eating because you want to, not to avoid stress or anxiety.

If you’re experiencing those emotions, you can address them appropriately rather than relying on food.

9. Practice gratitude and appreciation

When we appreciate what we eat and everything that goes into a meal, we’re more aware and present in the moment of eating.

Think about what it took to prepare the meal you’re eating, how good it tastes, and how grateful you are to have this meal.

All of this directs your focus and attention to the meal experience in a positive, mindful way.

10. Chew thoroughly

Although simple, it can make a big difference in the context of mindful eating!

When we don’t thoroughly chew our food, we don’t have time to be present during the eating experience. It also leaves us with poorly digested food that can distract from the meal.

Next time you sit down for a meal, actively think about chewing, and I bet you’ll slow down a bit!

Listen to your individual desires, likes, and dislikes

Eat what you truly want, when you want it. We don’t want to eat based on what we feel we should or shouldn’t do.

The more aligned you are with your individual desires, likes, and dislikes, the more present and attentive you can be during the eating experience.

Food is meant to be experienced and enjoyed, not a chore!


If you’re just starting to think about nutrition and want to begin today, my best recommendation is to avoid trying everything at once.

All of these 10 mindful eating practices are wonderful, but start by choosing just one or two to begin with. This will allow you to integrate these new habits with ease rather than feeling overwhelmed by them.

Once these new habits start to feel somewhat second nature, like they’re rooted in your daily routine, you can add one or two more practices.

Continue this way until you’ve created your own individual mindful eating practice!

Mindful Nutrition Method

Mindful eating has helped countless members of the MM Center achieve balance and sustainability with their eating habits.

Our method teaches them how to create these mindfulness habits with ease, not effort, with enjoyment, not dissatisfaction.

You can start your journey toward balanced eating habits today by joining the Mindful Nutrition method of the MM Center!

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