As a writer, every once in a while you get a topic that can be called nothing but ironic. This is the topic for me.
Although I’m a healthy eater through and through – who knows the health food community – I do have one habit that has followed me from babyhood to present day: I eat like a truck driver.
Sure, I take my time when I cook. Michael Pollan suggests that when you are cooking, you should just cook. So I turn off the TV and I focus on the peeling and the chopping and the culinary love.
Yet by the time the meal is ready, I am starving. Thus, I do what any prim and proper lady would: I inhale it.
There are stories of me doing this since forever. I could eat entire pizzas in University. I ate salads as big as my head in my corporate jobs. Munch, munch, trying to get those calories back that I burned in my whirlwind, Type A life.
I’ll learn with you, dear tujis, how to do the following. Let’s see if we can all slow down through our food:
1. Slow Food Choices. You can start by choosing foods that took their time. Clean food is generally slow food. It had to germinate and grow to be ready for your belly. It didn’t rush itself to get delicious. Taking your time with it is appreciating it for what it is.
2. Slow Cooking. Whether you have a recipe that takes 15 minutes or 30, you can devote your whole attention to it. Not only will this make the recipe taste better, it may also make you pause. Note the word may.
3. Sit at a table. Sitting at a desk or on the couch sure is comfy, but it isn’t special enough. A table lets your brain know where you are and what you are doing. If you like mealtimes, you may find yourself inclined to linger.
4. Put down the fork. We like giving our hands something to do, but the longer the fork is in your hand, the more it will get to work. Put the fork down and tell a really exciting story, using your hands, instead: “I caught a fish that was this big!”
5. Don’t eat when you are starving. If you are starving, the minute your food is ready, it really doesn’t have a chance. While you’re cooking, snack on some of the chopped vegetables. This will allow you to work on developing a mindful eating practice.
Slowing down in any area of your life can have a ripple effect. Slower time in the kitchen can mean a slower time with your friends. Slower time walking to work can mean a slower time to get a project done well, as opposed to quickly.
Reminder to self: chew.