By: Ellie Erlich, RDN and Donna Magen
Were you a part of the “eat everything on your plate” club? Does “you must finish your chores before you get dessert” sound familiar? Or was soda and ice cream banished from your household? We all have attachments to food and nutrition that date back to the years that we spent growing up. When entering a new relationship or dating, these differences in food associations might pop up. Whether you are out to dinner at a restaurant, cooking your new partner dinner at home, or sharing appetizers with friends, mindfulness is the key to renewing your relationship with food in a gentle way. The more you incorporate mindfulness into eating, the more you will find it enter your relationships with others.
Here are three tips to get you started on your journey into all things mindful:
1. Slow down and savor. Whether it is twirling your fettuccine and noticing how delicately it wraps around your fork or sipping your wine with closed eyes for that satisfying indulgence, slowing down equals satisfaction. Do the same on a first date: notice the cadence of your words and your breath. You will automatically find yourself slowing down and relaxing into the moment.
2. Be playful. Mindfulness with food means delighting in your food! Eating should be fun! Notice the childhood happiness you feel when you take a bite of ice cream, how crunchy tortilla chips can be, and where in your mouth you feel citrus bursts. Be playful with your date! Did you both reach for the salt at the same time? Was the hello ‘hug’ more of a fumble? Take the pressure off, have fun, and let go!
3. Dessert should be like a goodnight kiss. To end the night with grace and self-respect, two or three satisfying bites will give you the perfect amount of enjoyment. There is no need to finish your plate or “go all the way.” You should walk away satisfied, but not too full.
Remember that mindfulness is a practice, and what we practice grows stronger, whether it is with food or dating. For more mindful eating tips, follow us! @seedandseason_
As sisters and co-founders of Seed and Season, Ellie Erlich and Donna Magen believe that a healthy lifestyle leads to healthy relationships, both with yourself and others. As a Registered Dietitian, Ellie is NYU educated and completed her clinical rotation through Tulane University. Donna pursued the art of strengths-based health coaching through the American Council on Exercise and became a Certified Health Coach from the Dr. Sears Wellness Institute.