While I was sitting at my desk having lunch this week, I suddenly stopped as I somehow had the feeling that I am not eating. Well I was putting food into my body, but I didn’t enjoy it, I didn’t value it and most importantly my body didn’t really recognize it. I was busier with my work instead of eating.
Unfortunately, it becomes a bad habit having food on the fly and not really taking time for it. That’s why I decided to write a short summary of how important it is to eat consciously and chew your food well.
Probably all of you know at least some side effects of not well-chewed food:
- Acid reflux
- Incomplete digestion with all the related symptoms (e.g. flatulence, abdominal pain, etc)
Benefits of chewing well
The more careful your food is chopped up:
- The larger the target area for digestive enzymes is
- The better the carbohydrates can be digested
- The rarer the rotting and fermentation process occurs in the intestines
- This makes flatulence, abdominal pain, cramps rarer.
- The faster the feeling of saturation occurs
- The less you eat – the better you lose weight
So actually there are two major aspects about chewing well.
- Chewing is the first digestive section and also the last one which we can actively control. By chewing, we crush our food. The taste is also activated during chewing and we achieve a sensation of saturation, the so-called “sensory-specific satiety”, which is not associated with a full stomach and which helps us to finish a meal without feeling fatigue. Further, when you chew properly, your body releases a lot of saliva, which contains digestive enzymes. Those enzymes are also improving your digestive process. Keep in mind that digestion is one of the most energy consuming process of your body, so it is a good thing to support your body, by chewing your food well.
- Chewing your food is also about enjoying your food. You are eating food because you want to nurture your body and your soul. Enjoy the time you have got to eat your food. To taste the different flavor e.g. sour as a lemon, sweet as strawberries, bitter as a grapefruit, spicy as some jalapeños, or salty. It is a gift that we can taste all those different flavors and can mix them with each other.
In order to get aware of your own chewing behavior and feeling the difference, you can do the following exercise. The next meal you will have try to chew each bite up to 30 times. It doesn’t need to be super slow, just chew very consciously. Feel the texture of your food, taste the flavor, is it sweet or a bit salty? And most importantly enjoy it!
Repeat this every now and then and let me know how you liked it 🙂