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Mindful Eating – The “How Much”

The “how much” relates to the quantity that is being eaten. This is a little bit more complicated because it really depends on how you feel in terms of hunger and fullness. Using a hunger scale is helpful because it will help you assess the level of hunger and fullness.

Consider using a scale of 1-10, with 1 being starving, and 10 being extremely full and bloated. Ideally, feeling hungry around level 4-5 is when you should eat something and not wait until you drop to a 2-3 hunger level. Being extremely hungry can lead to poor food choices and overeating. With that said, try to eat until a fullness of 6-7, where hunger is no longer being experienced, but there may still be room for more food, though it is not necessary.

Consuming to a level of 8-10, when fullness is felt, indicates that the stomach is now trying to stretch and accommodate the extra food that has just been eaten. At this point, the body has been fed more than it needs. Your stomach may start to protest more food because it cannot digest the amount that is being given. However, the body is very smart, maybe too smart. When it is overfed, the excess will likely be stored as body fat – adipose tissue. For most people and as a general recommendation, this is not beneficial to our health.

Additionally, the more we become used to feeling full, the more food we will need to feel full. This cycle is usually what contributes to weight gain. Not to fret though, other ways to feel full include eating adequate protein, getting our fill of fiber, and of course, water! Stay hydrated, as sometimes dehydration can often be mistaken for hunger.

Harmonize with food,


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