As a Certified Nutritionist, one of the things I remind my clients is to thoroughly chew their food. Why is chewing so important? One reason is because physically chewing food in your mouth begins the process of digestion by breaking down larger pieces of food into smaller particles. Swallowing smaller pieces of food takes pressure off of the esophagus, making the act of swallowing more efficient. Chewing also releases saliva, which has digestive enzymes. The release of enzymes into the throat and stomach begins the process of digestion. Chewing helps with IBS, and other digestive problems.
Food & Mood
Have you ever considered what purpose your eating pattern serves? Any type of disordered eating pattern, whether it is restricting food intake (a “diet”),
counting calories obsessively, counting fat grams, avoiding entire categories of food (dreaded “gluten”, “carbs”, or “sugar” are three examples), overeating past the point of satisfaction, throwing up, compensatory behaviors like laxatives or exercising to extreme – all of these patterns are your relationship to food. And your relationship, like any other relationship, serves a purpose in your life.
What would you be doing with your life if you weren’t spending all of your time counting calories? Hating yourself? Wishing you were something – anything other than you think you are? How much time are you spending each day with thoughts about food, feeding, body size & weight? Most importantly, what would you be thinking and feeling if your mind wasn’t occupied with thoughts about food and your body?
Springtime has come to the desert! As I travel around the Sonoran Desert Preserve, I see the signs of spring everywhere. Even in the barren desert, spring brings life and new beginnings to my surroundings. I am reminded of the restorative power of nature, and the ways that all living things go through periods of dormancy, and new life. It’s never too late to create the life you want – look to the desert for inspiration!
Have you thought about the impact that eating and drinking “non foods” has on your body? Have you thought about the difference between real food and food like substances? It can be helpful as you work towards a fuller relationship with food and your body to think about how real food impacts your life, and how non foods interfere with your body’s natural workings.
There are three types of food like substances – processed, junk, and fake foods. Processed food is made from real food that has been put through chemical processes and is filled with chemicals and preservatives. Some examples of processed food include beef jerky, canned tea, jam, hot dogs, and low or non fat yogurt with sugar or sucralose.
As Lisa Schmidt Counseling and the Mindful Nutritionist settle in for the holiday season, I use this time of year to turn inwards, reflecting on both my accomplishments of the past year and my hopes for the future. I am grateful to be part of your lives, and for the privilege to spread the message about mindful eating, mindful living and learning how to be home in your own body. I practice mindful awareness and mindful movement to stay grounded during this busy time of the year, where everything around us tries to pull us “outwards” as December brings us to the shortest day of the year, drawing us organically “inwards.” Use this awareness of opposition to serve as a timeless lesson urging us towards our center – grounded and steady as the bustle and commercialism of the holiday season pulls us outwards, and the colder, darker weather moves us inwards. You’ll find your own personal practices of mindful awareness will help you navigate the abundance, energetics, and stimulation of December.
Between 10 percent and 20 percent of the U.S. population is affected by irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), yet the cause of the common digestive disorder is unknown. Lifestyle-related stressors, poor diet and overeating often exacerbate symptoms, but the opposite also is true: Adopting a whole foods-based, happy belly diet filled with foods that promote digestive comfort is a delicious prescription for digestive ease.
IBS is considered a “functional disorder,” because it refers to a set of symptoms rather than a specific disease. It often causes significant discomfort, though it is not considered a serious health threat. IBS is not related to inflammatory bowel diseases, such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis. Typical symptoms include abdominal bloating and soreness, gas and alternating diarrhea and constipation.