Tips For Eating Slowly

The food related rule I have to stick most closely after having my gastric bypass is the one about eating slowly. I occasionally have food issues now and when I do nine times out of ten it is because I have eaten too fast.

There are a few reasons why I need to eat slowly and its important for me to know why I have to do anything when it comes to following a rule. It is vitally important for me now that I don’t overeat and by eating slowly I become aware of when I’m getting full and need to stop before I get to the point of having over eaten.

Another reason is that by eating slowly I really do chew everything as well as I should. Because I have a siliastic ring (a little plastic ring at the end of the tube that goes into my tummy) if I haven’t chewed something down enough it gets stuck above the ring and can take ages to go through. This can be quite painful and it gives me chest pains.

Here are my tips for eating slowly:

Chew, chew, chew

After gastric bypass surgery you need to chew everything so much. This is partly because you don’t have as much stomach and intestine to help digest it you need to do some of the work manually. By chewing each mouthful at least 30 times it really makes you have a decent gap between mouthfuls.

Put your fork down between bites

When I don’t do this and if I think about it at the time, I notice I pick up food with my fork before I’ve finished the mouthful that’s just gone in and it’s too easy to shove the next one in straight away. By putting your fork down you are making sure you are being more mindful about when your next mouthful goes in.

Have a gap between mouthfuls

Have a good minute break between finishing one mouthful and staring on the next. By giving yourself a minutes break you are letting everything go down and making sure you aren’t getting too full.

Slightly distract yourself

I know this isn’t usually recommended but I find if I’m not completely focussed on my meal it’s easier to take a leisurely pace. If I’m eating with my family my preschooler is enough of a distraction but if not I find reading something on my phone helps me not shovel the food down too quickly.

Use small cutlery

If you have a small fork or a teaspoon you can’t get as much in at one time and it in a very unnoticeable way helps you eat slower than normal. Smaller bites is an easy way to slow the pace and once you have small cutlery it requires no thought at meal times.

One behavioural thing I have noticed that is interesting to mention is when I eat something I shouldn’t I tend to eat it quickly. I think because I know I shouldn’t be having it I’m trying to get rid of the evidence quickly and it always backfires. It ends up hurting and giving me grief, this is actually quite helpful because if I know it didn’t go down too well I won’t be keen to do it again.

Do you have a great tip that helps you eat slower? Comment below and let me know I’d love to know what you do.

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