Multitasking is great! Like calling a friend while you walk after work, or listening to a podcast while you fold laundry. UNLESS you are eating. “Distracted eating” often leads to over-eating, digestive issues after your meal, and not chewing your food properly. (Not to mention the stains on your clothes!) Ugh. Your brain is pretty amazing, but even it cannot figure out that you are eating when it is focusing on other challenging tasks, like walking on a busy street in the city. Your brain is not wired to multitask! The hormone leptin is what tells your brain when you are full during a meal, so if your brain is busy watching a horror movie, it cannot receive these signals. As a result, you overeat.
Eating while talking on the phone or attending a zoom also leads you to swallow air while eating, not chew your food carefully before swallowing, and you practically inhale a slice of hot pizza in under 5 minutes before it is your turn to speak. This scenario leads to misery for your GI tract that must spend the rest of the afternoon trying to digest partially chewed food, and misery for you as you struggle with gas and bloating at your desk.
I know it’s tempting to talk on your Bluetooth while eating breakfast and driving to work in traffic, or paying your bills while reading emails and eating a salad at your desk. But please resist the urge. Take just 10-15 minutes to remove yourself from other stressful activities (reviewing your Visa statement?) and savor your meal. Take a few deep breaths before you begin eating, close your laptop, maybe put on soft music if it won’t distract others, and enjoy the smells and flavors of your lunch. Soon enough you can even sneak outside for a few minutes of Vitamin D. 🌞