Mindful eating: A lost art

As we enter into March we also enter in to national nutrition month. Each week one the Dayton Children’s nutrition experts will be guest blogging to bring you the latest nutrition tips and information. Feel free to leave comments and ask any questions that you may have for our dieticians!

Also visit the nutrition and fitness center on our website for more information!

What is the secret key to good health and living at a natural weight? Mindful eating – a lost art that we need to re-find.  Just a few tips will send you on the right path to discovery:

Pay Attention:

  • Enjoy the smell of your food before eating and throughout the meal.
  • Notice the color and textures.
  • Chew thoughtfully (no need to count number of bites!) and fully taste.
  • Sip slowly.
  • Stop eating when comfortably full.


Be Thoughtful:

  • Consider where your food came from.  What hands helped to prepare it before you purchased it.
  • Enjoy the opportunity to eat what you want when you want.



  • What do you crave and why?
  • When are you really hungry for food?
  • When are you really satisfied and by what flavor/texture/smell/memory?
  • Do you really want the next bite or are you just finishing things up?
  • How do you feel after eating?


Raise awareness-Consider tracking to help you tune in:


Mindful eaters eat when hungry and stop eating when full.  They feel nourished and fill up on foods that satisfy.  They recognize opportunities to celebrate with food and do so without guilt.  Mindful eaters know the secret to healthy living!

About our expert Rachel Riddiford, MS, RD, LD.
Rachel has been an employee of Dayton Children’s since 2004. She is currently the Manager of Clinical Dietetics and works as an eating disorder specialist in the Nutrition Clinic. Rachel completed her BS in Dietetics at Western Michigan University, Master’s degree at University of Dayton, and dietetic internship at Indiana University/Purdue University. She has also completed an American Dietetic Association Pediatric and Adolescent Weight Management Certificate.


  1. Reply
    Carly Thurman March 1, 2012

    I love it! It is so hard to focus on mindful eating when the food in front of you looks SO good! 

  2. Reply
    Kristin Hannahs March 1, 2012

    We do so much on the go, rushing from here to there, multi-processing as a way of life. Unfortunately our eating habits often reflect that frenetic pace. It’s good to be reminded to stop and simply be aware of how and what we’re eating, and to savor our food. Thanks for this thoughtful article. 

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