“You gonna eat that too?”
I looked over at my son Crosby. He was eyeing the half-empty box of chocolates, gold wrappers strewn before me. Was he wondering how I could possibly devour another piece? Was he daring me to do so? In this case the guilty pleasure was a box of Neuhaus Caprice (Luscious toffee and vanilla cream wrapped in crispy nougatine and chocolate. Seriously. Eat one and weep). I stared back at him, blank-faced.
Shut up and go to your room was what I wanted to say. Instead I leaned over and kissed my little monster on his head. Time to go to bed.
Once he was asleep I returned to the kitchen to put the chocolates away. I stopped to think for a moment. Eating the chocolates had been intensely pleasurable and I sure as heck was not going to deny myself that feeling. Eating should be a sensual experience. But if I was being honest, didn’t the pleasure come from those first few bites? What more was I getting from the 4th, 5th, or 6th?
I believe at some point you stop noticing what your food tastes like. There’s no rule for when this happens but what I do know is that the more AWARE I am of every bite, the more satisfied I feel, and the sooner I stop eating. It’s because I’m TASTING more. EXPERIENCING more. I’m profoundly satisfied. More importantly, I don’t feel deprived.
Weight Watchers says be mindful of what you eat and why. It’s not that you can’t eat this or you can’t eat that. Or that you always have to eat less. Just be aware. Experience every single bite to its fullest. Try it the next time you eat. Move away from feeling that eating is cause for worry, guilt or concern to believing that food consumption is a source of pleasure and vitality—a celebration of the senses. And like most celebrations, the best ones are short and sweet.