Nutrition is an evolving field. We learn more each day, making it an interesting and challenging profession. Working in hospitals for many years, I know how important our health, body, mind and spirit are to our well-being. Too often we take these aspects for granted.
American adults and children weigh more than ever, yet we lack basic nutrients in our diet. We eat foods quickly, hardly tasting a bite. Eating on the run is a way of life; never mind that often our choices are loaded with calories, fat, and sodium but with minimal amounts of vitamins and minerals. Fruits and vegetables on the other hand are naturally low in fat and sodium and usually high in vitamins and minerals.
The reasons this has occurred are numerous, but one is that we live in a culture where we are expected to multitask. I work downtown in Washington, DC and the number of restaurants, coffee shops and take out places is staggering; even if I don’t have time to go inside for fast food, I will pass a cart on the corner that has hot dogs, sausages, etc. ready to eat. I can gobble high calories foods with a minimal amount of vitamins. In just a few bites my meal is finished; never mind that I didn’t really taste or enjoy my food.
Other examples of eating while multi-tasking are: eating food while driving or eating while in front of a TV, computer or movie screen. Do you really taste your food when you are distracted? Do you even know how much you ate?
This is not intended to be a lecture. Instead, this is a challenge to take one step today towards nourishment. By eating more vegetables and fruits and actually slowing down and enjoying our food, we can begin to respect and nurture our body. The next time you eat a piece of fruit notice and enjoy the smell of the fruit; take a small bite and sense the texture and how it feels in your mouth. Was that bite juicy, sweet, tart, soft, etc.? Also acknowledge that this food has vitamins and minerals that your body needs daily.
Make meal time a single task and really experience and taste your food. Start to nourish yourself and discover its benefits.