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Isn’t it funny that when you’re meant to learn something, you keep getting hit in the head with the idea? Recently for me, that’s been the case with this concept of chewing your food.
As you can probably imagine, I talk to A LOT of people each week in the field of health and nutrition. I also listen to hours upon hours of shows myself so that I can get better and better at what I can do for you guys.
I’ve been getting pelted with this idea of how important it is to chew our food from all angles lately.
The first person recently that brought this idea to importance in our lives is Dr. Steven Hines. I can’t remember he he talked about it during our show or if it was on his 4 hour DVD on digestion.
I don’t know about you but I’ve always been a pretty fast eater. Ever since I was a kid sitting in lunch at school I wanted to hurry up and eat my lunch so we’d have more time to play before we had to go back into class.
Perhaps if schools didn’t rush kids during breaks by giving them only 20 minutes we might not have developed that habit in the first place. But you can learn more about my thoughts about school by listening to this interview or reading what I had to say about that here.
But that’s another subject…
It’s not just school that fosters this idea of rushing while we’re eating. It’s our entire culture. With cell phones, we’re constantly multi tasking, over committing and are trying to fit too many things into each day so we end up stressed out.
This isn’t normal.
I’ve had mini bouts with indegestion ever since I was about 21 years old. I’d go through the drive through at a fast food resturant and eat a hamburger, fries and coke on the way to work with little time to spare.
Lately I’ve been making a big point to sit down and spend time eating dinner with Kate while Maggie sits by the table and begs for scraps of course.
We’re tying to talk less and chew more during our meals. I try to chew each bite of food 40 times. I only want to swallow it as a liquid thouroughly mixed with all my saliva and enzymes.
You might be thinking, “I don’t have the patience for that, I could never do it!”
Remember what I’ve talked about on the show? Food is a discipline. Food is a doorway for accessing higher versions of ourselves.
How is something so simple able to do that?
It has to do with the fact that it involves cravings, addictions, habits and emotions that happen as a result of eating. On top of that it has to do with the fact that you not only eat every single day, but 3 times per day!
So it’s a tremendous tool for personal growth.
Ask yourself why you don’t have the patience to chew your food 40 times with each bite? Is it because you’re actually rushed? If so, have you planned too much for yourself to do today? Or did you wait too long to eat, and all you want to do is inhale your food so you can get the emotional satisfaction of having a full belly?
Let’s get to the root of the matter here.
Whatever the case may be, there are lifestyle choices we’re making that are harming our health.
Do you see how if we look deeper into it, food can be a sign post or a warning of things we can change in our life?
I can say that since being more conscious and aware as I’m eating and chewing, I’ve had much less issues with stomach pain, indigestion, bloating, heartburn or acid reflux.
The slow cooking movement is gaining in popularity and so should the slow chewing movement.
On a physical level some of the most important things you can ever do in a day (in terms of health) are chewing and digesting your food, having 2 or 3 bowel movements and getting a good sleep.
What if I eat bad food?
Well in my opinion if you’re eating heavliy processed food, it’s even MORE important to chew that food up so that more surface area of that food is exposed.
You see when you swallow a chunk of food that’s not broken down or liquified, the hydrochloric acid in your stomach can only beging working on the outside of the food itself.
Imagine your food like a rock and only the outer layers is exposed to your stomach acid. The inner contents of that boulder are never broken down. Once you swallow you can no longer masticate your food.
What’s done is done.
By liquifing your food and making sure all of it is broken down, you’re giving your body a break from needing to produce extra stomach acid. And the stomach acid that is produced, can adequetly break down all the food particles because they’ve already been broken down by your teeth and saliva.
I’m convinced that chewing and eating slow can add years to your life and even prevent disease.
I have no scientific studies to back that up but it’s my assumption. I presume that in time there will be studies that back this up.
As you know health, vitality, energy, long life, disease prevention is all about digestion. Digestion is the number one name of the game.
Digestion starts in the mouth. It starts with how much you chew your food.
So if you want a long happy disease free life, chew each bite of food off your dinner plate 40 times each. If you can’t do that, ask yourself why and focus on making lifestyle changes that will facilitate your efforts.
Talk about an easy and simple health tip that can be applied to any diet in the world right?
How has chewing your food allowed you to enjoy greater health…or has it?
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