In early December, we had a wonderful Moms Night Out on the topic of Mindful Eating, or The Slow-Down Diet.
Holistic health counselor Cameron Rupprecht of Vitality in the City talked to us about how to eat for health, no matter what it is we are eating (which, she has found, often needs to be different diets for different people).
One of the key points was to chew your food! When we fail to adequately chew our food, our brain does not get the signal that we have eaten; we might get hungry again a lot sooner. Additionally, proper digestion starts in the mouth with digestive enzymes breaking down our food. If the work isn't done there, the stomach can't make up all the slack, and some of our food will go through our bodies undigested instead of nourishing us. Be sure to chew each bite at least 20 times (some sources say 40!) before swallowing. It helps to put down your fork in between bites!
Another helpful point among many in Cameron's great presentation is that nighttime is when our bodies detoxify, an important process that cannot occur (or at least not very efficiently) if our body is engaged in active work to digest and process food. Therefore, it's wise not to eat at least three or four hours before you go to bed. If you have to eat after dinner, keep snacks light to something that can be digested easily and quickly (usually more toward the carbohydrate end than the protein end).
There were lots of other great tips shared, and it was educational and enjoyable to learn from each other, too, including sharing how we deal with mealtimes with our kids, manage our own eating needs while nursing, and other challenges unique to moms.
Thanks to Cameron for giving such a great talk and to Natalie for setting up this Moms Night Out!
See an article about sleep by Cameron in our January chapter newsletter, edited by Natalie and available at our monthly meetings and on the chapter member Yahoo group.