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When you are learning mindful eating, the emphasis is initially on the eating process. Eating slowly and without distraction. Paying attention to hunger, fullness and taste.

That’s all good and important. What is equally important is awareness after the fact. How does the food you ate feel? How does your body respond? Is your body happy or sick? There may be foods you love but which don’t love you. Take ice cream; it may taste delicious, but if you are lactose-intolerant, the aftermath of bloat and gas is unpleasant.

The mindful choice could be to refrain from eating ice cream because of its consequences to your health. The same may be true for peanuts or corn or wheat, or anything else that causes physical distress and discomfort. Being mindful means paying attention to how the food affects your body.

You may feel disappointed, sad or even mad when you discover that some favorite foods are not really favorites at all. That’s okay; you can still choose them, just do so knowing that you will feel some discomfort as a result. Remember, mindful eating is about awareness and choice, not about rigidity or perfection. Be mindful with your choices, whatever they may be. 

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