Mindful Eating: Less than perfect (#38)
Mindful (or ‘Intuitive’) Eating is an evidence based, simple-to-learn, life skill, which can help people to enjoy a satisfying and healthy relationship with food. Being mindful helps people focus their attention and awareness on the present moment, helping them disconnect from habitual, unsatisfying and harmful habits and behaviours. It can also enhance self-compassion, a characteristic that differentiates those who successfully recover from binge eating from those who relapse. Evidence suggests that teaching children to eat mindfully from an early age may prevent food becoming an unhealthy coping mechanism. Extensive research also shows that Mindful Eating can help people control binge eating and overeating, enjoy food and feel more in touch with their body’s internal hunger and satiety signals. And while studies have demonstrated that Mindful Eating can impact positively on blood glucose and cholesterol levels, there is, however, no evidence to show that Mindful Eating results in sustained weight loss for the majority of practitioners. Mindful Eating therefore sits well in a Health at Every Size (HAES©) treatment approach, not one that defines success in terms of weight loss.