For many women, menopause can be a wolf in sheep’s clothing. While the drudgery of monthly periods disappears, it can be replaced by unwelcome side effects such as weight gain. Thankfully, we can fight back.
Let’s face it food is not just fuel. Food is family, food is love and sometimes it is also boredom, depression, anger and just plain old tired.
We can all relate to using food in less than healthy ways. Ever do this?
What if a dose of mindfulness meditation was the answer to mindless eating?
Mindfulness Meditation was first integrated into western medicine by Jon Kabat Zinn in the late 70’s. While teaching at University of Massachusetts Medical School, Zinn showed that mindfulness meditation could help manage chronic pain, enhance immunity and improve generalized well being in patients being treated for a variety of ailments. Since then mindfulness is advocated for its numerous health benefits, but how can it help our relationship with food?
Mindfulness is described by Zinn as “awareness that arises through paying attention to the present moment, non-judgmentally” It has also been described as a means to disengage from strong attachments to beliefs and to foster clear thinking and open heartedness.
A practice of mindfulness meditation has been shown to benefit our relationship with food in several ways. Among them mindfulness has been shown to:
Don’t know where to begin? There is an app for that! A few of my favorites are Insight Timer, Simple Habit and Headspace. With lots of free downloads it’s a great place to start! Commit to 5 or 10 minutes every day in the morning, before bedtime or when you are considering eating for something other than hunger!
Dr. Adrienne Youdim MD
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