How Mindful Eating Can Help Diabetes Management

Sarah Blunden, P.Dt, CDE, CPT, Professional Dietitian, talks about how mindful eating techniques can help with diabetes management.

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Sarah Blunden, P.Dt, CDE, CPT, Professional Dietitian, talks about how mindful eating techniques can help with diabetes management.
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Featuring: Sarah Blunden, P.Dt, CDE, CPT, Professional Dietitian

Duration: 3 minutes, 27 seconds

Mindful eating is listening to your body, and having a healthy relationship with food. So what this means is taking a step back and listening for your hunger cues and your satiety cues. So when you hear your stomach rumbling, this is a sign that you’re hungry and it’s time to eat.

Once you start eating, to actually get the cue to the brain that there’s food there can take up to even 20 minutes. So there’s different types of cues. There are also emotional cues, and this is when we eat in response to an emotion, like feeling sad, or mad, or bored, or stressed.

To implement mindful eating in a day-to-day way, the first step is really listening to your body and listening for those hunger cues. The next steps are trying to eat with no distractions. So this means turning the TV off, turning off the computer, and sitting down at a table.

Next, when you start eating, you want to start by smelling the food, then you want to really chew and savour and taste the food by taking little bites. So sitting at a table, with little distraction, really tasting the food and having pleasure in the foods that you’re eating, that’s what it’s all about.

There is some research showing that people who practise mindful eating have lost weight. But what’s more important is their success in keeping the weight loss. So what happens is mindful eating becomes a habit; it becomes part of the routine, and this is why there’s more success in keeping the weight loss.

Mindful eating is really listening to the body and listening to those hunger cues so we end up eating smaller portions and making healthier options, and this can lead to healthier eating habits and possible weight loss.

Mindful eating can play an important role in diabetes management. Weight loss is the most important and efficient way to help control blood glucose levels. So mindful eating is taking that step back, really listening to the body and the hunger cues, taking away those distractions, and looking at what we’re eating. So by doing this we’re having more success with weight loss, which in turn can then help control blood glucose values.

Here are some tips to practise mindful eating:

• Remember: slow down, listen to your body. Listen to those hunger cues. • Remember that it can take 20 minutes when that food gets into your stomach to send that message to the brain. • Taking the time to chew and really taste your food is so important. • Take away those distractions. Close your phone, turn off the TV, turn off the computer, and really appreciate the food that you’re eating.

For more questions or information on mindful eating, please reach out to your Registered Dietitian or Professional Dietitian and your healthcare team.

Presenter: Ms. Sarah Blunden, Registered Dietitian, Ville Saint-Laurent, QC

Local Practitioners: Registered Dietitian

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.