Meal Time – No Screen Time

June 3, 2021
By Swati Chandrasekhar,

Way before the Covid 19 pandemic struck, the world population was stuck to another health changing phenomenon – eating in front of a screen! Oh yes, if you are going to say you hardly watch TV, you are still guilty.  Here we are referring to all types of screens, be it the television, desktop, laptop, smart phones and even e-book readers. If you are used to having your food while looking any of these screens, here are some useful tricks to overcome this not so healthy habit.

Let’s start with why we are insisting on working around the way you consume your meals. To answer that, start observing how discreetly this habit modifies your food intake.

  1. Overeating: With no eye contact with the food you are eating, you tend to eat more than what you eat in a regular meal.
  2. Low satiety: Satiety, or the satisfaction felt after consuming a meal, is closely related to the senses- smell, sight, taste and feel. The sense of sight plays a major role in enhancing the whole experience of eating. Remember, we always enjoy a well-plated dish, served with the best garnishing. With your eyes glued to the screen, the level of satiety will be at its lowest.
  3. Higher chances of overeating: With your eyes glued to the screen, there is a high possibility of binge eating while binge watching. Large portions of salted and sweetened food (ok, let’s call it junk food), are often eaten while watching shows. This lethal combination produces an automatic hand-to-mouth motion, which continues until the food is gone; e.g. two persons sharing a 1.5-liter bottle of cola, can easily consume 42 teaspoons of sugar between them.
  4. TV commercials are loaded with ads on fast foods and packaged foods, which in turn make you opt for unhealthy food choices. The same can be said about commercials and pop ups while using the internet. Sadly, you won’t see any commercial hinting at eating healthy wholesome foods.
  5. Inactivity and the risk of obesity and type 2 Diabetes: Sitting in front of any screen and eating is the same as putting things in your mouth mechanically, without realizing how much you have eaten. You are at risk of many lifestyle diseases like as obesity, heart disease, diabetes mellitus, and more. Prolonged inactivity, without stretching and bending, leaves you prone to injuries too.

Say Yes! if you are ready to make 5 small and easy changes to reverse this situation.

  1. Stick to a designated dining area: Always eat your meals in your dining area, be it the kitchen, dining room, any area which has been designated for meal consumption. And no, that does not include the living room sofa!
  2. Declare the screens off in the dining area: When you turn off the screens and eat, the concept of mindful eating kicks in. This way your mind is now focused on eating. You can sense an increased enjoyment in the food you eat.
  3. Work on plating even the simplest meal aesthetically: Well-presented meals make eating an engaging joyful activity. Moreover, seeing how much has gone from the plate makes you aware of the portion sizes, which in turn helps you become more sensitive to the feeling of fullness or satiety.
  4. Set a rule and follow it: Make a commitment to yourself – first eat and then head to the screen. Involve your family for more help. Get them talking about how you enjoy the aroma, taste and texture of the meal. At the end of the day, it’s not just you, but the entire family who will start enjoying the process of mindful eating.
  5. Move: Most people who spend a chunk of their day in front of a computer screen or any other screen, are always complaining of muscle stiffness. Our bodies are made to move, so some bending and stretching is vitally important to keep your joints flexible and our muscles toned. Yoga, Pilates, isometric exercises and Zumba, all achieve this, and are useful for giving you ‘body awareness’ that will help to keep you on track food-wise. After a good workout you are unlikely to come home and dive onto your sofa with a bag of chips.

These lifestyle changes are very easy to incorporate in your daily routine without much effort. Follow these basic recommendations and include them more often in day-to-day schedule for a long-lasting habit of mindful eating. Apart from changing your screen engagement, it will have a positive impact on your digestive system, eventually reducing the incidence of chronic lifestyle diseases like diabetes, heart diseases, thyroid imbalances, PCOS and cancer.

For more insights on healthy eating, check our blog Healthy eating . Alternatively, you can download the app to take a quick health assessment. Leave us a message to get in touch with you and know more.

Leave a comment


    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop