Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Trader Joe's Tuesday -- Mindful Eating and Buying

I just got back from Trader Joe's and here's what I bought: raw almonds, celery, goat cheese, peanut butter, apples, nectarines, watermelon, blueberries. Why is that worth noting? Because while my Trader Joe's back is most often full of healthy stuff, when I shop when I'm hungry I usually end up with more salty and sweet treats thrown in.

I was hungry when I was shopping today, but as I walked in I asked myself "What does my body want me to eat?" And, I instantly gravitated to fruit, fruit, fruit and then celery, with a a little protein thrown in.

A couple months ago I read "Women, Food and God: An Unexpected Pathway to Almost Everything," and while I loved it, I felt like I couldn't do what was recommended in the book. But yesterday very syncronistically I saw an episode of Oprah where the author Geneen Roth was answering questions from women who had read the book. It was synchronistic because both Saturday and Sunday night Aaron and I made two beautiful beautifuls but we really overate. It was all so delicious and we just very simply ate too much, so we were both so full afterwards -- and two nights in the row.

One of the main tenets of the book is mindful eating, so that you are aware of when you are satisfied (not overly full!) rather than eating so fast and unconsciously that you miss the "I'm satisfied" cue your body naturally gives. I've never taken so long to eat a salad as I did today. I was between appointments and sat quietly, just me and my food, and watched as the world went by, fully tasting my food, chewing more than I ever do, and stopping when I was satisfied. It was actually the most peaceful meal I think I've ever had. I was just eating. I didn't even allow myself to check my Blackberry!

And, when I got back from Trader Joe's I was hungry, and all I wanted was an apple. I ate it mindfully and it became clear I've missed so many flavors I've had in my mouth. I say I love food so much, and that I love making beautiful flavors come together, and yet I eat so quickly that I miss most of them.

It's been 24 hours, but I feel so much lighter already. I haven't overeaten once, and I've enjoyed every bite I've eaten so very much. And, Trader Joe's is my new buddy. And, now when I enter their lovely doors, I have a new mantra: "What does my body want to eat?"

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