When we can’t even make the time to sit down to eat in peace, there’s something wrong.
Indigestion (dyspepsia) is a pain or burning feeling in your upper belly or abdomen. It is common in adults. Indigestion is not the same as heartburn. It is not related to stomach acid. Heartburn is when stomach acid goes out of your stomach and back into your food pipe (esophagus). You can have symptoms of both indigestion and heartburn at the same time.
When you eat too fast, you swallow more air, which can cause bloating and gas. Slowing down to properly chew and enjoy your food helps to break down larger particles of food into smaller ones, aiding digestion.
- Not all “hunger” comes from the stomach. Appetite often triggers desire for food based on seeing or smelling a favorite food. Emotional hunger may stem from emotions like depression, anger, boredom, or tiredness. Brainstorm some helpful, lasting ways to deal with those feelings instead, such as taking a walk, calling a friend or family member, or listening to some music.
- We are often drawn to foods that provide momentary pleasure, but then give us stomach cramps, headaches, and an energy crash later. Notice how foods affect you long-term, and take that into account when choosing what to eat.
- It takes several bites of food before you notice a difference in the way your body feels, and it takes several minutes before your brain alerts you that your stomach is full. Eat slowly, and notice the way your whole body feels as your stomach gradually fills.
The extremes of being either too hungry or too full are unpleasant and avoidable. You can practice compassion toward your body by giving it what it needs when it needs it.
Taking time to eat can help you:
- enjoy your food
- focus on your food
- prevent overeating and indigestion
- enjoy eating with others
- make healthier food choices
- be mindful of your eating habits and choices
Eating quickly can prevent you from knowing when you are full.
There are different ways you can take time to eat.
- Eat slowly and thoughtfully
- Focus on your food, savoring each bit, while you are eating
- Notice when you feel full
- Don’t rush when eating out
- Put your knife and fork down between bites
- Eat with others and enjoy the conversation with friends and family
- Slow down and allow yourself time to enjoy your food
Chew your food thoroughly to experience all of the aromas, textures, flavors, and taste!
Enjoy eating without distractions.
- Computers, cell phones and other electronics distract from eating which can cause overeating or eating too fast. Make mealtimes “electronic free.”
- Sit down at the table instead of in front of a TV. Focus meals around the food.
- At work, step away from your workstation and eat lunch in the cafeteria or outside with coworkers.
- Think about your portions when eating. Eating when you are distracted may increase the likelihood of you eating too much of what you are currently eating.
Healthy eating habits include taking the time to make food an important part of your life.
Eat well, and choose to practice the art of nourishment!
If you are suffering from acid reflux, heartburn, GERD, celiac disease, diverticular disease, hepatitis C, IBD, IBS, hemmorhoids, or suspect other gastrointestinal conditions, contact us at Texas Modern Gastroenterology in Sulphur Springs, Texas. We can help.