La mindfulness, daughter of the Buddhist meditation, with its alimentary declination, the mindful eating, of which the American guru Andy Puddicombe (Mindful eating, De Agostini, € 14,90) speaks in a freshly printed book, teaches how to live every experience with food "here and now". It is an effective technique for fight emotional tensions e nervous hunger, to cure theobesity and eating disorders, but also to improve our eating habits and help us recover and maintain a healthy weight, without stress.
The secret: eating consciously
"This practice does not tell you what to eat and what not, but how to do it," explains the doctor Teresa Montesarchio, psychologist and psychotherapist in Naples, who wrote a book on this topic: Mindful eating (EPC publisher, 12 €). «Setting very strict rules at the table does not help to solve problems with the scales. On the contrary, it creates the basis for conflicts with food. I can say with certainty because I experienced it firsthand: when, years ago, I decided to lose weight by giving up many foods that I considered, rightly or wrongly, unhealthy, I ended up dreaming of them at night. I was obsessed with it 24 hours a day. Then I discovered conscious nutrition. You do not have to judge what you bring to the table, labeling it as right or wrong, but pay attention to other aspects: your hunger and satiety signals, the sensations perceivable through the sense of smell, sight, taste, in the presence of any disturbing emotions ".
Even the moment of shopping must be "meditated"
To get used to orienting your thoughts on the experience you are experiencing, it is important to do the shopping, cook and eat in the right way. "The moment of shopping is particularly delicate», Says Dr. Montesarchio. «In my mindful eating courses, a whole week is dedicated to food shopping. During the “theoretical” lessons and then in the points of sale we learn to recognize the automatic reactions that are triggered when we turn between the shelves of the super or find ourselves surrounded by products of all kinds.
We can also take "unhealthy" foods, as long as the choice is conscious. The important thing, in fact, is avoid compulsive shopping that are triggered when we feel overstimulated by the sight of "gluttony", banned from the diet ».
The courses to build a healthy relationship with food
La mindful eating it leads you to deconstruct all the preconceived beliefs you have about nutrition. «It is a fundamental step to build a healthier relationship with food», points out Teresa Montesarchio. «It is also very important making trigger foods harmless, those we fear trigger in us a "raptus" for which we either eat them or avoid them altogether.
In the courses of mindful eating I ask the participants to draw up their ranking, starting with more dangerous foods. By practicing mindfulness we can realize that the best solution is not to train our ability to resist favorite snacks, but to understand that taking them may not be pleasant (a group course lasts 2 and a half months and costs about € 350).
Read also: 10 tips for losing weight with mindful eating