Just in time for Thanksgiving!
With the annual holiday of overeating upon us, I thought the following might be of interest. The Harvard Health Letter reported earlier this year that “mindful eating” could help in losing weight.
Does this sound familiar? You’re at your computer, facing a wall of emails. Before you know it, you’ve finished lunch without even noticing it. A small yet growing body of research suggests that a slower, more thoughtful way of eating could help with weight problems and maybe steer some people away from less-healthful choices, reports the February 2011 issue of the Harvard Health Letter.
Applied to eating, mindfulness includes noticing the colors, smells, flavors, and textures of your food; chewing slowly; and getting rid of distractions like watching TV or reading. If you eat too quickly, your body's signals of satiety (fullness) may occur after you have overeaten instead of providing a signal to stop eating.
Several studies have shown that mindful eating strategies might help treat eating disorders and possibly help with weight loss. One study included 150 binge eaters and compared a mindfulness-based therapy to a standard psychoeducational treatment. Both active treatments produced declines in bingeing and depression, but the mindfulness-based therapy seemed to help people enjoy their food more and have less sense of struggle about controlling their eating.
You can read the rest of the article, along with specific ways to approach eating more mindfully at the Harvard Health Publications website.
Happy Thanksgiving! Please feel free to bring your out-of-town guests to our hour-long meditation this Saturday morning November 26 at 9:00 am.
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Rabbi Mark Sameth is the spiritual leader of Pleasantville Community Synagogue (Joyful Judaism!) an inclusive progressive synagogue–with members from twenty towns, villages and cities all across Westchester. Read The New York Times article. Weekly meditation at the synagogue every Saturday morning at 9 am is open to the public. Everyone is welcome and warmly invited.