The Rewards of Mindful Eating

By Laura Dawn

Part of Mindful Eating For Dummies Cheat Sheet

The benefits of mindful eating can most certainly help you find a more balanced approach to eating and relating to food. How often do you turn to food when you’re feeling tired, stressed, anxious, lonely, over-emotional, sad, or depressed, or because of low self-esteem or poor body image? Or rush through eating something without paying attention?

More specifically, on top of all those wonderful mindfulness benefits, a few additional rewards of mindful eating include helping you to:

  • Cope with disordered eating
  • Regulate eating habits
  • Modify or change eating behaviors
  • Work with impulse control
  • Reduce binge-eating episodes
  • Manage weight effectively

Don’t you just love how one simple act can lead to a whole ripple effect of more positive benefits? Call this the up-spiral. So many more rewards ripple out to affect all areas of your life — like improving your relationships with other people, improving your work life and your spiritual life. These kinds of benefits — truly feeling amazing in your body, mind, and spirit — are the deeper reasons that you’re embarking on this mindful eating journey.

If you’ve struggled with food in one way or another, some of these benefits may strike a chord. Whether you’re struggling with losing weight, suffering with a disease like diabetes, trying to change unhealthy eating patterns to healthier ones, have been caught in a cycle of binging, or are suffering from impulsive or mindless eating, then mindfulness can help you to carve out a new path and offers you truly profound benefits that may include:

  • Finding a healthy balance within your relationship with food.
  • Discovering peace of mind.
  • Reconnecting with nature and your food source.
  • Feeling good in your body, mind and spirit.
  • Feeling a sense of happiness, meaning and purpose in life.

Underneath the more superficial changes that everyone seeks and strives to make lies a fundamental and human desire to feel in balance, peaceful, content, healthy, happy and, ultimately, fulfilled in your lives.

In your mindful eating journal write down your top three initial benefits that you hope to gain through mindful eating. Now look at this list. What intentions or motivations lie underneath your desire to achieve these benefits? What are the deeper, more meaningful benefits that you’re looking to align with?