The Value of a Pause Before a Meal

Pay attention for the next few meals how you eat.

  • Is your body actually hungry?
  • Do you use smell a delicious meal or piece of cut fruit before you eat it?
  • Are your eyes tantalized by the colours on your plate, or maybe a well-thought presentation?
  • How does your meal taste on your tongue?
  • Do you add more food to your mouth before you’ve finished swallowing the previous bite?
  • Do you eat slow? Fast?

Many things affect your digestive system. At your next meal, try to pause before you start eating. Take a minute to collect yourself, let your stress fall away, bring your focus to the food in front of you.

There are various ways to appreciate this moment:

  • Take some deep breaths
  • Pray or say some words of thanks
  • Note the colours of the food on your plate, the smell of the food
  • Sit in a comfortable position and count, slowly, to 25

By pausing for a few minutes before you eat, your digestive system gets ready to receive food. Stress greatly affects this system, so relaxing and breathing before you eat helps. It’s also been found that people take smaller bites and chew more thoroughly when they are in a relaxed state.

Challenge yourself to eat a meal in complete silence, focusing fully on each bite of food. What do you notice that you didn’t before?

It’s also beneficial to rest for a few minutes after a meal, and then follow up with a walk (in nature if possible) to help your body better digest your food. Exercise is great for digestion.

You may be amazed at how much more you enjoy a meal just by pausing for a few minutes.

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