Did you know digestion begins in the brain? Formally known as the “cephalic phase” — the smell, sight, and thought of food are all initial triggers that stimulate your body to prepare for the enjoyment of food. Salivary glands start pumping so that your mouth can start properly digesting and breaking food down. There are physical stomach secretions that occur in this phase as well and it accounts for approximately 20% of digestive juices! Taking advantage of this phase by eating slowly, intentionally, and mindfully can do wonders for the breakdown of your food and the ability to absorb nutrients!
How do you eat mindfully? Try these simple exercises at your next meal!
What are the colors like? What does the texture look like? The shape of the food?
How does it smell? See how many adjectives you can come up with. Is the smell connected to any
How does it feel on your tongue? How many different flavors?
Note your thoughts and feelings:
How is the food making you feel? Any specific emotions that come up?
Try to take at least 10 seconds to chew each bite. Try not to swallow until the food is completely broken down.
Notice the feeling of swallowing the food and the way it moves down your digestive tract.
*adapted from Susan Albers