Do You Ever Wonder Why Slow Eaters Almost Always Are Not Overweight? And they stay fit!
I’ve noticed this in my family. My mother was being teased by her siblings as a slow eater. My aunt would always be told by my uncle (her husband) to swallow the food and stop chewing it for a long time. I remember my uncle telling my aunt to “swallow your food now!” And my aunt would always be so annoyed at this remark.
Slow eaters….there are many of them in my family. I’d like to mention particularly my mother. My grandmother and aunt, who I grew up with, used to tell me stories about my mother being a slow eater. My mother was slim in her teens, even when she got married in her twenties and bore eight children. As she grew older, she gained a little bit of weight but the weight would not go overboard. She always remained slim and within the appropriate range to her height.
There are many slow eaters out there and you might have noticed them too. They may be in your family, your friends or your colleagues. And most often you don’t see them overweight.
Now, why is that? Why do people who eat slow not get overweight and stay healthy? Have you ever wondered?
Here’s why…They take the time to slow down and chew their food well!
What does chewing got to do with weight loss and staying healthy? Why is it so important to chew? There are 6 important reasons:
1) Chewing produces saliva that activates the production of digestive enzymes
Do you chew your food well? Or do you eat on the run? When you chew your food, you are activating your saliva to produce enzymes found in your salivary glands that helps break down the food into smaller particles so that the food becomes easy for further digestion or breakdown of molecules in other organs in your digestive system.
2) Food chewed well makes it easy to swallow
When you chew your food well, the saliva in your mouth softens the food, lubricating it so that it is easy for you to swallow it down your esophagus. Have you noticed if you swallow your food after only a few chew bites (when you’re on the run), you have a hard time swallowing. This is because the food has not been coated well with the saliva that has a softening agent to help glide the food through your esophagus.
3) Chewing your food alerts the other organs in your body to start their “engines”
When you chew your food well, you send signals, through other hormones in your body, to the stomach to start its gastric juices and enzymes for digestion. The more you chew your food, the more you increase the production of enzymes and hydrochloric acid (HCL) in your stomach. Enzymes and ample HCL acid are necessary in breaking down the food further into smaller molecules in your stomach.
I would like to emphasize that your stomach has to have the right amount of acidity to further digest and chemically break down those food particles you’ve eaten, particularly protein. With the right amount of acidity (HCL) you will eliminate symptoms of GERD, acid reflux or heartburn. Read this article about GERD, Acid Reflux or Heartburn.
4) Chewing eliminates gas, bloating and abdominal pain.
Food that is not chewed well in the mouth could remain undigested in the stomach (if there is less acid in the stomach) and reach your intestines in the same undigested form. When reaching the intestines undigested or not broken down into smaller molecules, the undigested food starts to putrefy and will potentially lead to gas, bloating, abdominal pain and other digestive problems. So chew your food well before swallowing!
5) Chewing your food well makes you feel full and satiated so that you do not over-eat
When there are more digestive enzymes circulating to break down food, through the initial process of chewing, there are more nutrients being delivered to the cells in your body. When the cells receive the nutrients, they no longer get hungry. Cells get fed and they get full and you feel full. Result: you feel satiated and no longer want to eat more!
6) Chewing helps store more energy in the digestive system for overall health
Your digestive system creates a lot of stress in your body as it works to digest the food. When you chew your food well, you are putting less stress in your digestive system and freeing up some of the energy so it can work efficiently for overall health.
You now might ask how much should you chew your food?
It all depends on the food you eat. Food that’s crunchy and hard needs to be chewed until it easily is dissolved into almost a liquid form. I say liquid form because it is how easily it will get absorbed into your body. If your food has too much calories like having a coconut yoghourt, the coconut has so much calories that needs to be chewed to break it down further to smaller particles for easy absorption.
So now that you know the importance of chewing your food, why not try it with your first meal after reading this post. And then let me know how it went by leaving a comment below.