Mindful Eating

Health Behaviours 5 min

Help students become more aware of their eating habits.

By DFC - PLC, Nutrition Team
teacher eating lunch at a table with her students

Highlights

  • Feelings of hunger and fullness
  • Tips to practice mindful eating

Being Mindful Leads to Healthier Choices

The topic of mindful eating has become popular since Health Canada published a new Canada’s Food Guide in 2019.  The new guide indicates that healthy eating is more than the foods you eat. It is also about where, when, why and how you eat. This mindful approach to eating can help you become more aware of your eating habits and can lead to healthier food choices. 

Want to tackle the topic of mindful eating with your class? Start by discussing what hunger and fullness feels like.

Hunger Fullness Ignoring Signals

You may feel like you are:

  • Running out of steam
  • Having difficulty concentrating
  • Getting irritable
  • Hearing your stomach growl

You may feel like you are:

  • Gaining your energy level back
  • Having an easier time focusing
  • Feeling relaxed
  • Being satisfied (but not too full)

You may:

  • Eat more food than your body needs
  • Experience discomfort, or even stomach pain, after your meal

Help your students determine if they practice mindful eating.  Ask them if they can remember their last meal or snack and if they can describe what they ate or drank. It is possible to have an entire meal without tasting or noticing what was eaten.

Wondering how to practice mindful eating?

  • Make every meal a time to relax. Sit at a table and eliminate distractions (turn off TV, tablets, computers and phones).
  • Use your senses and pay attention to textures, taste, aromas and flavours of food.
  • Listen to the signals your body sends about hunger and fullness.
  • When you feel like eating, ask yourself if you are hungry. If so, have a meal or snack.
  • Eat slowly and enjoy every bite.  Taking your time can help you better understand when you have eaten enough.
  • Notice when you feel satisfied. If you don’t finish everything on your plate, keep the rest for another time.

Nobody becomes a mindful eater overnight, so practice and patience are key.  Getting started at a young age can help set the course for lifelong healthy eating habits.  In addition to being mindful, Health Canada also encourages that you cook more often, enjoy your food, and eat meals with others. For more information, go to:

Canada.ca/FoodGuide

OverView

Grade
Multi level
Language
Bilingual
Curriculum
wellness

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