The number one reason why you shouldn’t eat on the go is because of the effect it has on your digestion, the second reason is that it may lead to weight gain….. Many scientific studies have explored the benefits of eating more slowly and chewing food longer and this is difficult to do if you are eating on the go.
Eating on the go does not allow you to relax and eat mindfully and therefore can cause stress in the body and affect the way your digestions works.[bctt tweet=”Eating on the go causes stress on the digeston”]
Amongst many other states, the body has two states where it is either in “fight or flight” or “rest and digest”. These states work opposite to each other like a see-saw, so similar to a see saw where you can only be either up or down, not up and down at the same time you can only be in “fight or flight” or “rest and digest” now you may be wondering why and how this relates to eating on the go…… when we eat on the go we are in “fight or flight” mode, simply because you are on the go, you are moving and do things so the body is prepared for movement and is not in a state of “rest and digest”, we need to be in a state of “rest and digest” in order for the body to break down or food properly, so we can absorb and utilise the nutrients.
Digestion under Stress – Eating on the Go
Our digestion is controlled by the enteric nervous system; this is composed of hundreds of millions of nerves that communicate with our central nervous system. As mentioned stress activated the “fight or flight” response and our gut is especially vulnerable to the presence of any form of stress. Digestion can shut down because the central nervous shuts down the flow of blood to the digestive system and this affects the contractions of the digestive muscles (gut motility), decreases gastric secretions, and increase mucosal permeability. This all means that the food that we are eating is not being properly broken down and digested and this can lead to issues such as gas, bloating, belching and acid reflux and worst case scenario if you are always eating on the go this can lead to inflammation of the gastrointestinal system.
So it is important to eat mindfully and with no interruptions to induce the state of “rest and digest” allowing your food to be broken down and absorbed properly and for you to process that you have eaten a meal otherwise as you can see below this can lead to weight gain.
Eating on the go may also lead to weight gain
A new study published in the Journal of Health Psychology has found that people who eat on the go may increase their food intake later in the day which leads to weigh gain. This may be because we are distracted which disrupts our ability to process the impact eating has on our hunger.
Eating on the Go Affects our chewing: The benefits of chewing
Most people chew and swallow their food without thinking about it, and this is more common with people who eat on the go, when eating on the go you are probably wolfing down your food and not chewing enough. What happens is by not chewing enough you shortchange your nutrition, because digestion actually begins in your mouth, the chewing process is an important part of the digestion as this makes it easier for you intestines to absorb nutrients from food particles
Chewing has many benefits:
- Signaling: Chewing sends signals to your body to get ready for digestion; it starts the secretion of hormones, and prepares the body for secretion of hydrochloric acid, enzymes and bicarbonate are essential for good digestion
- Saliva: Your saliva contains digestive enzymes which are necessary for the first phase of digestion;
- Bacteria: Chewing discourages food-borne bacteria from entering your gut on plus-sized food particles. An overgrowth of unfriendly bacteria in your gut may lead to gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, cramping, and other digestive problems
So be mindful when you eat [bctt tweet=”Be mindful when you eat”]slow down, chew more and savour your food, this will benefit your body, mind and spirit and only eat on the go is you absolutely have to.