Mindful Eating and Nutrition

Man holding a bag of groceries at a greenmarket

Nutrition can have a major impact on our bodies, brains and overall well-being. Eating well is important, especially when it comes to getting enough fruits and vegetables in your diet. Discover ways to prioritize mindful eating this month and build some healthy habits.

Mindful Eating

Mindfulness is the concept of being fully aware of what’s happening in and around you in the present moment. Bringing mindfulness to the table means a kinder, gentler approach to eating.

The focus isn’t necessarily on changing the food we eat (though it can be) but on changing our thinking around food. Mindful eating applies that concept to eating, and looks at why, when, where, what and how you eat, and your feelings as you do. Mindful eating can help you eat more slowly and control your cravings.

Here are some potential benefits of eating mindfully:

  • Your brain has time to realize you’ve eaten enough, which can take about 20 minutes.
  • You may eat less food and fewer calories.
  • You can choose more mindfully to snack on healthier foods.
  • You can enjoy the experience of your meal, and savor every bite.
  • Think about if you are eating due to hunger or emotions. 
  • Appreciate the time, energy, and resources that went into your meal. 
  • Eat Slowly. Chew multiple times and put down your utensil between bites. 
  • Take Time to enjoy the flavors of your food. 
  • End your meal when you feel satisfied, not stuffed. This may not always look like a perfectly clean plate. 

The Employee Assistance Program has many different offerings that help contribute to a healthy lifestyle.

Try a mindful eating guided exercise by TELUS Health, formerly LifeWorks.

And here is a new recipe with this season’s fresh produce: Spring Salad (Source: Love and Lemons)

Looking for a convenient place to pick up some fresh produce, local dairy products, meat and more?

Visit the Columbia University Greenmarket on the Morningside campus (Broadway between 114th and 116th streets), open year round from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Thursdays and Sundays.

From June to November, there is also a greenmarket at Columbia University Irving Medical Center (168th Street and Fort Washington Ave.) from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesdays.

Resources to Support You

Eating a healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean and plant-based proteins, and healthy fats not only promotes overall good health and weight control but also provides you with essential nutrients that can keep you energized throughout the day.

See how the Office of Work/Life can help support you. 

Wellness Coaching is a healthy lifestyle program available to Columbia University medical plan participants and dependents at no additional cost. Work with a wellness coach telephonically with additional web-based support to help you eat better, move more, and lose weight.  

To learn more or to enroll, call United Healthcare at 800-232-9357 or visit this website.

Columbia University employees and dependents covered under the university’s medical plan may be eligible for coverage for nutrition counseling with a registered dietitian.

For more information or to learn if you are eligible, call United Healthcare at 800-232-9357.

The A1C test is a simple blood test that measures your average blood sugar levels from the past three months. It is used to test and diagnose pre-diabetes and diabetes.

Remember to schedule time with your doctor for your yearly check up to test your blood sugar levels, cholesterol and blood pressure too. Your mind and body are all affected by what you eat, thus check in on your levels to stay in tune with yourself.