I recently had the pleasure of reading the book Reinventing the Meal, by Pavel Somov. In a nutshell, this book is not only about becoming a more mindful eater, (and quite possibly losing extra weight in the process) but it is also a "how to" guide on bringing mindfulness to your life through meals.
This idea of mindfulness while eating is mostly unheard of in our present culture of guilt, deprivation and mindlessness. Most patients I work with want to ignore food and eating altogether. They are filled to the gills with nutrition knowledge and resultant anxiety over what, when and how much to eat. They are exhausted from the overwhelming amount of information and misinformation on nutrition and health. They have literally thrown in the towel and decided it is best to stop thinking about what they eat completely. They have shut down.
In Reinventing the Meal, by bringing mindfulness literally to the table, Somov turns the idea of "how to lose weight", on it's head. Instead of walking the reader through what to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner he instead takes the reader through a three course meal. Not a traditional three course meal, but rather, three courses of increased mindfulness.
While Reinventing the Meal may be a bit difficult to wrap your brain around, especially for those who are new to the mindful eating concept or are new to meditation, it is full of easy to try exercises for readers of all spiritual levels to practice. No other book that I have read, and I have read a lot of books on mindfulness and weight loss, gives as many hands on exercises for the reader to try, learn and grow. The exercises will help to bring relaxation, mindfulness, sensory enjoyment and nourishment back to our dining tables. For those who are already familiar with mindfulness, reading Reinventing the Meal, can help you go deeper into your practice, particularly around food and eating.
I look forward to recommending this book to many of my patients, especially those patients who have been unsuccessful at traditional dieting. It is also an invaluable teaching tool for those who are nutritionists, health coaches, or mindfulness educators.