When tucking into your food or having a quick after-workout snack, you are most likely focusing on making your taste buds happy and giving your body energy. But, regardless of the difference between eating a sugary snack or a healthy meal, the way you chew might have an effect on your enjoyment of the meal.
Chewing seems simple and natural, but over time you can learn bad chewing habits that can affect your oral and gut health.
Why you Chew Food
- Since the beginning of man, chewing food has been the natural way to break food down into smaller pieces, which allows for easy digestion. Of course, some food takes a different amount of chewing to break down than others, and early humans most likely used their teeth to crush plants and get through to meat.
- These days, the process is much more modern. Meat is more tender, high quality and is already produced to cook, but it’s still important to consider what you are doing to your oral and digestive health by quickly consuming food without effective chewing:
- Chewing helps tell your body that the digestive system needs to be ready, when your body releases saliva it helps break down the food into tiny pieces, it’ll also help keep the stomach calm before digestion, which will allow the food and nutrients go through easily.
- If you chew slowly, it gives you stomach enough time to alert your brain for satiety, it’s known that if you chew your food slowly, it reduces your food intake between meals, as you will feel more full.
When food particles are left on your teeth, they can produce bacteria which can cause tooth decay. If you chew slower, it produces more saliva which will help keep your teeth cleaner, and provide the pH for your mouth after consuming acids and sugars.
How to Chew Properly
- There’s no perfect routine for eating properly, due to the many different types of food and the condition of your teeth need to be taken into consideration. There are, though, some tips that can help you chew better. You can, for example, chew 20 times before swallowing to ensure that the food has been properly made into particles.
- If you find that you are eating too fast, you can set some rules that will help you chew more considerately. As an example, you can only eat at arranged times while sitting at a table, avoid various activities when eating, and take time to focus on your food and how much you are eating.
Chewing might seem like an easy task, but the method to which you eat can be a big factor in your overall health. Time to slow everything down, eat carefully, and chew mindfully, and you could see yourself eat less, and enjoy your meals considerably more.