Eating in Silence

Contributed by Mireille Delman

The idea behind silent eating is to create a state of inner coherence for harmonious functioning of the body’s biological rhythms. Silent eating can improve digestion, reduce stress, and put you in touch with your most intimate relationship, the relationship you have with the food that becomes who you are.

This may be read at table before a period of silent eating of, say, five or ten minutes, as you wish.

Suggested Cues

“We are eating in silence so we can tune in.

Most of the time our energy is directed outward. We expend too much energy by talking.

There is no need to talk, argue, debate, evaluate, think. You experience just being in your body.

Tune in to the body and focus on posture for good flow of energy.

Tune in to the body so that you eat only what your body needs.

Breathe to relax the nervous system and enhance blood flow to the digestive organs.

Focus on chewing: Digestion initially begins in the mouth. As you start to chew your food, digestive enzymes found in the saliva begin to break down, preparing for nutrient absorption.

Engage the senses.

Take time to look at the food and appreciate its shapes, colors and textures. Smell the food and enjoy its aroma.

Look at the colors: Eat from the colors of the rainbow.

Savor the first bite.

Let it rest in your mouth and see if you detect what tastes are present.

Chew well.

Chew slowly and thoroughly. Notice the impulse to swallow prematurely and resist it. Try chewing the food for as many as 30 times to the point that it is liquefied. The more you chew the better your digestion will be.

Take time.

Take breaks to stop chewing and breathe. This calms your nervous system and encourages optimal digestion. Eat until you are 3/4 full.

Observe.

Bring awareness to the mouth and belly.

Be present to the sensations of eating. Notice what images, feelings, inspirations arise for you when you eat. Whenever your mind wanders, bring it back to chewing, breathing, lifting the fork, swallowing, putting the fork down.

Continue eating in silence.”