Practice Mindfulness Before Eating Dessert

By Julie Murphree, Arizona Farm Bureau Outreach Director

My favorite time to have dessert is when I go out with my close friends during a birthday dinner. Of course, we have to have dessert to celebrate another special birthday. Certainly, we’re being mindful of how special the occasion is to each of us around the table.

But what about those times you grab a handful of M&Ms from someone’s bowl on their desk? Or, in the grocery store, you pass by the bakery section and quickly grab your favorite pie, cherry in my case. Perhaps those are impulse grabs or buys.

But what about that dinner at home where you did make a dessert as a follow-up to the meal?

Registered dietitians suggest practicing mindfulness when it comes to eating dessert by waiting 20 minutes after a meal and then assessing satiety (fullness) levels.

Nutritionists suggest a few “mindful eating” strategies.

  • Chew your food slowly.
  • Chew your food thoroughly.
  • Check in with your body to see what information it is giving you. If the body says, “I want dessert,” you’re okay. Well, I wish that was always the answer.
  • Wait 20 minutes to see if you’re still hungry before biting into that homemade pie.

In my own life, I try to have what I call a “cheat day” where I can indulge in dessert. Cherry pie here I come.

Arizona Farm Bureau’s Fill Your Plate has a recipe “dessert” section for those cheat days when a special occasion calls for a homemade dessert.

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