Mindful Eating Tips: Enjoy the Holidays Without Regret

Many of you who come to me for help losing weight have developed healthy habits of moderation and use My Fitness Pal to keep from going too far off-track.  Still, most of you are justifiably concerned about how you will get through the “Trifecta” of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s without sabotaging the progress you’ve made and the hard work that you have put in.

One approach to begin working on now is Mindful Eating.  I have written before on this subject and many of you already use mindfulness to manage binge eating (and other compulsive behaviors), stress and anxiety.  Mindful eating means taking responsibility for what you put in your mouth by being fully present at meal/snack time.  An excellent guide to this approach is the CAMP System.  CAMP stands for Control, Attitudes, Mindful Eating and Portions.  The site is full of practical steps you can take to guard yourself against old, harmful behaviors.  I encourage you to check it out!  A must-look is the Basic Mindful Bite, which I’ve linked to and pasted here:

The Basic Mindful Bite  (Courtesy of Day One Publishing)

The basic technique of mindful eating in the CAMP System is the Basic Mindful Bite. You can use this technique with any solid food.
  • As you bring food to your mouth, slow down and become aware of your movements.
  • Once the food is in your mouth, clear your hands. Put silverware or remaining food down.
  • Chew this bite with your mind in laser-sharp focus on the process. Concentrate on the taste of the food and the act of eating. Don’t do anything else while you’re chewing. Simply chew and pay attention.
  • After you swallow, but before you bring more food to your mouth, rest for a few seconds, thereby inserting a pause into your eating.
  • Keep chewing until the food is uniformly smooth. Use this consistency of the food as a signal to swallow.


Does that look like something you can do?  If so, I encourage you to start practicing it today, and at every meal.  Print it out and keep it on you or keep the page in your phone browser bookmarks.   Have a happy and regret-free holiday season!