Skip Nav
Healthy Recipes
This Creamy Banana Cashew Overnight Oatmeal Offers 15 Grams of Protein
Try These Overnight Oats Recipes — All Under 400 Calories
Healthy Recipes
20 Hearty, Healthy Sweet Potato Recipes Full of Protein, Fiber, and Everything in Between

Pavel Somov Offers Tips on Eating in the Moment

How to Eat Mindfully

As someone who loves food but wants to eat healthy, I'm always looking for ways to savor the process of eating — from chewing my food more to making meals last at least 20 minutes. If you also like to think what you eat, then you'll appreciate this recent Huffington Post column in which Pavel Somov, author of Eating the Moment, offers some pointers on eating mindfully.

From the way you eat to the way your table looks, many factors affect how mindful you consume your food. So in the interest of not scarfing it all down, check out Somov's tips when you


When sitting down to a meal, suggests Somov, take a page from the feng shui philosophy to create a sense of calm. First thing's first, turn off the TV. Here's what he recommends:

  • Clear the table so it's free of reading material and other distractions. As Somov points out, "The less there is on the table not directly related to your eating, the more room there is for your mind to focus on the food."
  • To create even fewer distractions, create a place setting that uses minimalist tableware, possibly something Asian-inspired.
  • If you want to get really extreme, create a separate eating space in a spare room. With just a table and chair, try dining all alone with nothing else to focus on.

I am definitely guilty of reading while eating, but when I really take the time to focus on my food, I appreciate it more. How about you?


Join The Conversation
sham28 sham28 8 years
Having a chair/ table alone in an "eating space" would give me a complex. You kind of lose the "healthy" aspect to eating if you're eating in isolation.
almostloli almostloli 8 years
guilty. (reading while eating) :D
opentypeA opentypeA 8 years
I like crosswords. Or my computer, which is probably worse than TV, but otherwise I get sooo bored eating.
ashopaholic ashopaholic 8 years
I have just taken the baby step of no longer eating on the couch, but I still need to read something while eating. Hopefully I can ween off of that in the coming weeks.
Wild-Magelet Wild-Magelet 8 years
Also if I'm going to take time for myself, which again I agree is important, I would find it much more relaxing to just sit and do yoga or try meditation or something than to have 'me time' that involved eating. I think that would train my body to reach for food every time I got stressed.
Wild-Magelet Wild-Magelet 8 years
I get that this is a good idea, but I enjoy food and eating, and I especially enjoy relaxing on the couch after a long day with my dinner and a good movie or TV programme. I realise I've programmed myself a bit, since I tend to want to watch TV as soon as I've got a plate in front of me, heh, but it's not like I eat every time I watch TV and I don't think it means that I eat all that much more. I fill up my plate with lots of veggies and fruits anyway; I wouldn't just sit in front of the TV with an open box of snacks. Part of the enjoyment in eating for me is to combine it with fun activities like TV that I use to wind down. If I sat by myself at a table in an empty room, I think it would make me feel like there was something institutionalised and unnatural about eating.
Karelynn Karelynn 8 years
Very interesting, I like the idea. I think it's important for a person to be left alone with only their own thoughts for a short time. We're all often distracted by other people, tv, radio, computer.. and others, and sometimes it's good to just get away from it all.
goddessru goddessru 8 years
I like the crosswords idea, I might try that soon.
lollofit lollofit 8 years
I think taking a second to make my food look pretty- arrange slices or drizzle a sauce- it kinda makes me slow down and enjoy it a little bit more.
miss-malone miss-malone 8 years
I always take the time to eat slowly and enjoy my meals without any other distractions.
Style2Demeanor Style2Demeanor 8 years
I just wanna know if it's true that you can eat in proportions by using a cereal bowl?? Is that really a good idea or not??
michlny michlny 8 years
I eat lunch by the computer; dinner with a crossword and TV. I cannot imagine just eating. I have been told to try that before by my acupuncturist but it is near impossible. However, I have been more mindful of what I'm eating as I'm eating it -- the process of chewing etc. It helps with digestion.
Tiger_Lily Tiger_Lily 8 years
Usually I manage to focus only on eating. It's hard, especially in the morning. I just love to read stuff while I eat.
kclulu kclulu 8 years
Yeah I can't see myself doing this. I would also rush through eating and not enjoy it at all. I don't really find it neccesary to focus on every bite of food to enjoy it. I take my food from the kitchen in the portion I want to eat, plop down in front of the tv, then I eat and then I am done. Maybe if I had someone to eat with that would change but doing absolutely nothing would be a totally painful snooze fest.
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
to be honest, with how hectic life is, i'm guilty of a lot of those things, but it's not likely that i'll be changing my habits any time soon. like the turning off the TV part. i don't think that it makes me any less mindful of what i'm eating if i'm watching tv.
mamasitamalita mamasitamalita 8 years
that is a really good idea about the crossword puzzles. something to do, but that needs some concentration and focus to slow you down.
Spectra Spectra 8 years
I like to do crossword puzzles while I eat. It actually makes me eat slower and it's nice to have something to do while I'm eating. I do agree with getting rid of the stuff on the table though...right now, my dining room table has a bunch of stuff on it and I need to clear it off so it's not so distracting.
blackdresses88 blackdresses88 8 years
I agree with the comment above. Nothing to focus on? That doesn't sound pleasurable at all. Maybe reading a book is less intense than watching TV. But I don't want to do nothing at all...
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
I think I'd get bored, honestly. With no one to talk to, nothing to read or look at, I'd probably hurry through my food to get back to doing something interesting.
Ingredients You Shouldn't Put in Guacamole
Mindfulness Challenge
$5 Meals
Should I Watch What I Eat on Vacation?
From Our Partners
Latest Fitness
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds