Mindful Eating Workshop? I Didn’t Know It Could Cut My Addiction.
How I, A Sugar-Holic, Recovered Via Mindful Meditation.
Throughout my earlier life, I was a sugar-holic! Here’s how I went from sugar-holic to delivering the key ingredient of a mindful eating workshop, and of a mindful eating online course. So try my mindful meditation workshop as a mindful eating challenge. It’s a mini course to get you the best mindful eating Australia has.
My sugar habits probably started with my mother’s cooking, or at least she gave it a good push along.
For instance, we lived in a tiny country town in Australia. Even when I visited my family during university holidays, my mother would send me back to university with my little, old car packed with cakes, tarts, and preserved fruit.
Then, when I started work, my love of fine food, and sugar, was helped by all the delights of food in Melbourne, and beyond.
But, in the last several years, after years of tummy upsets from sweet food, I decided I wanted to eat more mindfully.
Thinking about it all now, I’m still appalled that I only accidentally discovered that crappy food was the problem, and that mindful eating was a solution.
Of course, I had not acknowledged any of this to myself. I just knew that I loved ice-creams, and numerous other foods laced with sugar.
It’s taken me a long time to be in any way comfortable talking about all this.
For me, ice-creams were a reward, and a comfort food. They helped me enjoy my outings, and provided pleasant little events in my day, or by trips out of town.
Only late in my life, did I learn to eat only for my body and mind, and not for my emotions.
Even now, long after I have conquered my sugar addiction, I can still tell my partner about the location and quality of every ice-cream shop in Darwin, as well as across the so-called Top End of Australia’s Northern Territory.
If you don’t have time right now for my story about the horrors I endured, then here are the key points I’m making.
- Mindful meditation is the key ingredient of mindful eating.
- Once you’re mindfully in the present, you can take other key steps too.
- My Breath Meditation Mini Video Course will start you on mindfulness, including mindful eating.
In my story below, see how I (Chris) used sugar for comfort.
But, with mindful eating, via yoga & meditation, I finally got my body working inside and out.
Breath meditation is a key part of mindful eating, including helping to cut sugar.
I only did classy ice-cream!
It turns out that partner’s mother also loved ice-creams. But it seems she was not as discriminating about high quality ice-cream as I was.
In my case, I knew the quality of the ice-cream in every shop that was a candidate for the Christine Lalor best ice-cream award!
I had sampled them all, and indulged a lot in my favourites. (I neither knew nor cared that they were 21-29% sugar!)
So, my partner is always mildly amused when we drive past an ice-cream shop that his mother loved. With a wicked smile, he asks how their ice-cream quality is. I always know!
Of course, my passion for ice-cream was actually the tip of the iceberg.
I loved sugar in anything, including even large, juicy Pink Lady apples.
As you know, in the modern world, excess or added sugar is in most processed food. Even fruit is bred for more sugar.
So, together with fruit, I had plenty of places to satisfy my sugar cravings.
Leaving aside fruit, a government agency in Australia says:
“…Australians, on average, consume about half a kilo of [added] sugar each week…. Much of it is invisible. Large amounts of sugar are smuggled into our diets through sweetened products such as cakes, pies, lollies and sugary drinks.”
Speaking of cakes, that was another of my passions!
Almost accidentally, I discovered the cause of my tummy problems
With mindfulness, I called time on sugar
Every year, I eventually noticed that during the Flametree’s Bali Retreat, my tummy was much happier.
It was the major reason I chose to control my sugar passion.
In other words, during the retreat, I had none of my usual digestion issues, or stomach upsets.
Thinking about this, I realised the food at the retreat was more wholesome than my regular diet.
Among other things, there was more vegetables, less processed food, less added sugar, less rice, and no ice-cream.
So, after the last retreat before the pandemic, I decided to go cold turkey on nearly all types of sugar. Before that, I’d never stopped to think about both the visible and hidden sugars you can see in the diagram below.
For instance, I went through my food cupboards and threw out about three garbage bags of processed food with sugar, crackers, noodles, sweetened sauces, and more.
Immeditately, my body mass started to drop rapidly. (Some friends were even worried if I was sick. But I was in fact healthier than I’d ever been.)
My weight then dropped less rapidly, but still kept steadily dropping over months and years.
Obvious and less obvious sugars that I purged!
My body rejects crap food!
My body mass has steadily reduced.
Best of all, my body has become bodily intolerant of very sweet foods. My digestion won’t put up with them at all.
Clearly, my body was never happy with crappy food.
But now, with my mindfulness, and the increased crap food intolerance, it’s now easy to just exclude them from my food intake altogether.
The result is that I am now healthier than I’ve ever been. I’m also stronger because some of my old weight has been replaced by new, toned muscle.
Me before mindful eating. Less tone, & full of tummy upsets.
Mindful meditation set me up well
By the time I was ready to change my diet, I was also very active from yoga, and very mindful from pranayama breath meditation.
In turn, my regular yoga and breath meditation had caused me to live largely in the present moment, as well as to be highly aware of the world around me.
Being present included being present to the world that was up close and personal to me, including my food.
So, it’s good to see that a noted expert on mindful eating, says:
“Training your mind to be in the present moment is the #1 key to making healthier choices.” (Susan Albers)
Given my mindful skills, from years of pranayama breath meditation, I was able to relatively quickly cut the consumption of the sugary and other foods that I’d discovered were the source of the tummy upsets.
As a result, I reduced my body mass.
Even better, since I implemented my new mindful eating program, my weight has stayed constant. In fact, I have steadily lost body fat, and replaced it with toned muscle.
I’ve also noticed that various yoga poses had become more accessible to me.
So now, let me tell you how I’ve concluded that mindful meditation is the key ingredient of a mindful eating workshop, a mindful eating online course, and implementing mindful eating in your life.
Mindful eating starts with mindfulness skills
Since all this happened some years ago, I have become aware of the massive amount of information on mindful eating.
I actually implemented mindful eating just by using my mindful meditation practice.
So, my view is that very little of the current mindful eating material places enough emphasis on the actual process and practice of actually getting mindful.
Mindful eating steps are only possible if you are mindful, or learn to be mindful.
In turn, the way to get mindful, and eat mindfully, is to regularly practice mindful meditation, and ideally some yoga.
But, if you only want to do mindful meditation, then even without yoga, you’ll still get to a great state of mindfulness.
Once you are mindful, the various steps and activities involved in mindful eating will then be relatively obvious to you. (You can also see some of them in one of the diagrams below.)
In other words, by being more present in the moment, you are more aware of the things to do so as to eat mindfully at any particular time.
You’ll also find, as I did, that you have a greater amount of self-discipline to follow what you already know to be good eating practices.
In other words, you are less impulsive, and less of a prisoner of your passions.
So, that is my story of how I, as a yoga teacher and breath meditator, became more aware of my food passions, and changed my health direction.
Medical doctor on yoga as mindful eating exercise
You could of course say that what I am telling you is self-serving.
So, for some proof of my own findings, I will quote from Dr McCall. He’s a medical doctor and yoga therapist who has studied the food addiction and body mass issue.
First, Dr McCall talks about yoga. He says.
“…In contrast to conventional ideas [about burning fat], what yoga does, is that it relieves STRESS.
It does it by lowering the levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
In turn, this lowers your appetite.
Furthermore, when you eat extra calories in a state with a lot of cortisol [from your stress] in your bloodstream, then your body is very efficiently going to turn those extra calories [you may be consuming], into fat.
In other words, Dr McCall is saying that when you are stressed, you’re more likely to eat. (I’m sure you’ve experienced this.)
In addition, he also says that when you’re in a stressed state, fat will more easily build up. In particular, it will build up internally, around organs where it’s especially dangerous to accumulate fat.
Dr McCall adds that part of the success of yoga, in dealing with body mass issues, is due to how it gives you a yogic or mindful state. So, he also says that this yogic mindfulness also helps deliver mindful eating.
Dr McCall on mindful meditation matters
Dr McCall then comments more specifically on mindful eating. He says.
“…. When you start to be aware of your eating, for example, when you’re really paying attention as you eat, you may notice the subtle cues that suggest that you’re getting full.
In comparison, if you’re distracted… as you’re eating your food, you may not notice those cues.
But, if you make your food time … [more mindful], then you really do notice those cues.
Really, losing weight is part of a holistic plan where you look at everything.
For example, you look at your psychological well-being, and your dietary habits.
…Then, things like body weight tend to just sort themselves out.
Consequently, your body will naturally, slowly move you in the healthy direction.
….To sum it all up, it’s really just about taking the little steps in the right direction every day”
As I’ve told you, I found Dr McCall’s descriptions to be exactly what happened to me.
So, together with my experience, and other research I’ve done, I’ve concluded that mindful meditation is the key ingredient of a mindful eating workshop, a mindful eating online course, and implementing mindful eating in your life.
Mindful eating course
Are you interested to reduce your stress, or body mass, or just cut digestive upsets? If so, come along to some of Flametree’s daily yoga and breath meditation classes.
Another good option is Flametree’s 4 class video course introduction to pranayama mindful meditation.
Flametree’s Breath Meditation Video Course may be the sort of in-studio or mindful eating online course, or mindful eating workshop, that you may be looking for.
As I’ve said, my focus is on teaching you to be mindful. Once you have that skill, much more becomes possible for you.
For instance, just as I did, you’ll then find you can implement the other relatively simple steps in mindful eating, such as you see on the diagram below.
I stress that unless you know how to be mindful, via the mindful meditation process I will teach you, it’s likely you will be much less able to consistently implement the steps in the mindful eating diagram above.
The mindfulness skills I teach will help you do things like cut sugar, and otherwise change your diet, if that’s what you want.
In addition, if you choose, you’ll also have more ability to implement some of the fasting skills I later chose as well. But just my cutting sugar, you’ll notice some remarkable, and healthier, improvements.
Summary: top benefits you’ll get from the mindfulness workshop
From my story, you can see how much I got from my journey.
To summarise, here are some top benefits you can get from my upcoming breath meditation mini-course.
- Mindfulness to make mindful eating work easily and effectively for you.
- A pleasant, powerful meditative process to underpin many other improvements in your life.
- With mindful eating working, less tummy upsets, less body mass, and better health (or whatever your particular goals are).
What our students say about Flametree Yoga classes
One short, powerful review is by long term Flametree student Angie Sublime (pictured below), who says that Flametree classes and courses are “the best investment in yourself you will ever make”.
Or especially if you’re considering a mindful eating online course, here is a review left by Dee Diamond. She says:
“Flametree Yoga’s range of online yoga classes is exceptional, and they are conducted so well that you feel like you are in the studio with the teacher. I’ve enjoyed participating in online classes at home or whilst travelling.”
If you need to hear more about how others have found Flametree classes, please see these many other student reviews.
Flametree’s Mindful Meditation Video Workshop
Flametree’s long weekend mindful meditation video mini course is online. Do it in the comfort of your home.
So, with mindful meditation video mini course, you get:
- 4 video classes on key pranayama breath meditation techniques like Ujjayi, Viloma, Bhramari, and Nadi Shodhana.
- 10 FREE pranayama breath meditation classes (for our regular weekly live pranayama classes).
Via the orange link below, you can buy these pranayama breath meditation classes as a package, at an early bird cost of $49.
Don’t do what I did
When it come to food, I (Chris), was a prisoner of my emotions.
Emotions controlled what I ate, and when I ate.
My mother brought me up to be a strong, independent woman. But neither she nor I, knew that with food, our emotions (and our lack of knowledge about sugar) were feeding us rubbish!
So give yourself the power to decide how you eat mindfully, as well as make mindful choices about many other important aspects of your life.
Among many other things, mindful eating also helps you to implement your own mindful eating for a better climate.
Get all the many benefits you can see in the diagram above.
If you’ve never yet done yoga, then start with the beginner yoga half price 10 class pack at the orange link below, including 2 FREE extra classes.