Mindful eating practices are an easy and effective way for people to slow down their eating and listen to their body during meals. Making healthy food choices and behavior modification can be challenging for those with type 2 Diabetes Mellitus(T2DM). You may be suffering from depression induced by the realities of living with a chronic illness, negative side effects of medication, general poor health, and required dietary change1. Mindful eating may help you move forward. Recent studies have shown it may be effective in helping people adapt their eating habits, lose weight, and lower their fasting blood glucosen2.
Breathe — a practice example
Take a few deep breaths as you begin to check in with your belly. Are there sensations of physical hunger? How hungry are you? What are you hungry for? Is there a particular type of food you’d like to have? You might want food. You might be thirsty. You might be hungry for something entirely different than food. Listen to what your body is telling you.Mindful eating BASICS
A history of mindful eating
Mindful eating was developed out of the Zen Buddhist practice of mindfulness, where one focuses on being embodied and fully present in a moment. Loss-of-control-eating may be most salient factor in overeating when hungry3 and mindful eating practices seek to attenuate that. Mindfulness interventions can increase restrained eating behaviors and reduce emotional eating4. A randomized, controlled study of a mindfulness-for-stress-eating program showed participants benefited from a significant reduction in cortisol awakening response and maintained body weight5.
Slowing down for to eat mindfully
If you’d like to learn more about eating mindfully and how to begin the practice. Halebee has a 4-week program on mindful eating that is sure to help you slow down and eat well!
- Semenkovich K, Brown ME, Svrakic DM, Lustman PJ. Depression in type 2 diabetes mellitus: prevalence, impact, and treatment. Drugs. 2015 Apr;75(6):577-87. doi: 10.1007/s40265-015-0347-4. PMID: 25851098.
- Miller, C.K., Kristeller, J.L., Headings, A., & Nagaraja, H. (2014) Comparison of a Mindful Eating Intervention Among Adults With Type 2 Diabetes: a randomized control trial. Health Educ Behav. 41(2): 145–154. doi:10.1177/1090198113493092; Olson KL, Emery CF. (2015) Mindfulness and weight loss: a systematic review. Psychosom Med 77:59–67
- Annameier, S. K., Kelly, N. R., Courville, A. B., Tanofsky-Kraff, M., Yanovski, J. A., & Shomaker, L. B. (2018). Mindfulness and laboratory eating behavior in adolescent girls at risk for type 2 diabetes. Appetite, 125, 48–56. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2018.01.030
- Tak,S.R., Hendrieck, C., Nefs, G., Nyklíček, I., Speight, J., & Pouwer, F. (2015) The association between types of eating behaviour and dispositional mindfulness in adults with diabetes. Appetite, 87: 288-295.
- Daubenmier J, Kristeller, J., Hecht, F. M., Maninger, N., Kuwata, M., Jhaveri, K., Lustig, R. H., Kemeny, M., Karan, L., & Epel, E. (2011). Mindfulness Intervention for Stress Eating to Reduce Cortisol and Abdominal Fat among Overweight and Obese Women: An Exploratory Randomized Controlled Study. Journal of Obesity, 2011, 651936. https://doi.org/10.1155/2011/