If you’re dieting and watching your weight, chocolate can be the evilest and most sensational temptation. It’s one of the foods to be avoided as much as possible when on a dietary kick. However, if you deny the cravings for sweets or high sodium food for a long time, it leads to more binge eating and mindless consumption. According to Michelle May, MD, including small portions of chocolate mindfully can put a stop to the guilt-inducing binge. Keeping this in mind, the mindful chocolate challenge was born.
The Mindful Chocolate Challenge
The 30-day wellness challenge was created by New York Times Well editor Tara Parker-Pope, who talks about building healthy habits instead of focusing on just dieting. According to her, the four fundamentals of building good habits are movement, nourishment, refreshment, and connection. For the challenge, Parker-Pope urges the reader to take a single piece of chocolate or fruit and savor it mindfully. It will satisfy the taste bud and also nourish the body and soul.
Change the Way You Think About Eating
The way you practice eating and talk to yourself about eating sets your eating habits, says Dr. May. According to her, changing the narrative can change your eating. Change the vocabulary from ‘I feel like indulging’ to ‘I am doing self-care’ or ‘I am nourishing my soul’. This will help you build a healthier relationship with food and you’ll feel better after consuming it. Eating one piece of chocolate mindfully leads to satisfaction, self-love, and guilt-free eating.
The Steps of the Challenge
The practice of mindful chocolate eating is done in certain steps. Unwrap the chocolate while sensing the aroma, taking in the sounds of the wrapper, and then breaking off one piece of the chocolate and slowly tasting it. Notice how the texture changes and the flavors dance around with each chomp. After the piece is finished, you’ll feel relaxed and remain guilt-free. Apply this mindfulness technique while eating other foods and meals as well. Being attentive to what you experience with all senses while eating can be very beneficial for your long-term eating habits. This is the basis of forming healthy eating habits and letting go of the ones that lead us to have a bad relationship with food.
The Reason Why Mindful Indulgence Is Effective
Including one piece of your favorite snack not only leads to a wholesome, healthier diet but also prevents further unhealthy eating. Eating mindfully and incorporating the practice in each meal helps in actually discovering what foods you like, what makes you feel good, and what works for your body. While allowing yourself to be honest with your eating habits, don’t be judgemental and feel guilt. Rather focus on small actions you can take each time you eat. Start slow and make progress in creating the right food habit. Dr. May, who is herself a past prisoner of the yo-yo diet, suggests eating fearlessly by eliminating terms like ‘self-indulgence’ and ‘treat.’ A piece of chocolate is key to peace of mind. Try it out yourself to change your habits today.