I usually don’t eat when I’m distracted and I think it’s a huge overlooked factor when it comes to digestive disturbances.
When most people think about digestion, they often think about digestion beginning in the mouth (by chewing food with saliva), although digestion actually begins in the brain (called the “cephalic phase” of digestion”). This phase begins when we see, smell or even just think about food we are about to consume.
This phase prepares our body for the meal we are about to eat – which is why mindful eating is so important.
Preparing the food yourself and allowing your body to utilize its senses gives your body enough time to increase saliva production and for your stomach to begin producing enzymes and acid needed for optimal digestion.
Mindlessly eating and not taking the time to actually appreciate the food we consume can actually set us up for digestive concerns. Mindful eating is so important when it comes to digestion.
Digestion takes place in a parasympathetic state (aka when you’re relaxed) and is greatly impacted when you are in a sympathetic state (aka fight or flight)
It’s important to know that any type of stress can affect digestion – and your body perceives distraction as stress.
Not only can distracted eating (eating while walking, driving or even watching tv) impact your digestion – you can also easily miss your body’s cues and overeat.
Are you mindful when you eat?