Eat With Your Hands!

Leave your fork or spoon in the cupboard, wash your hands, sit down, take a few breaths, relax, then begin eating. Bon Appétit! IMG_1274

Every time I read "How To Eat" by Thich Nhat Hanh, I'm amazed by his words more and get a deeper understanding of his words. There is so much in this little book. I remember when I was first reading this book, my last roommate told me that she takes so long when she's reading his books because she has to stop and think about the words. What she said was beautiful, and it stayed with me. His words seem simple, but when you read them with full awareness and think about each sentence he writes, you'll discover profound meanings that will make you feel peace in your heart and sometimes sadness for this world and how we are careless when it comes to taking care of it.

Sometimes people eat while watching TV. But even if you turn off the TV, the TV in your mind continues to run. So you have to also stop the TV in your head

It's easy to turn off your tv while eating, but the hard part is turing off the "tv in your head" also in his book, Thich Nhat Hanh tells us how when we think about the past, and plan our future, we end up eating our anxieties and worries. I don't think that's how you want to nourish your mind and body. Eating should be a time of joy and relaxation, so stop your thinking, and just eat.

I keep this book where I usually sit down to eat, as a reminder to be mindful and to read a few lines every now and then. Being mindful doesn't happen overnight, it takes practice and lots of it. Until it becomes a habit. When it does, be careful not to fall back to your old habits, especially at stressful times, keep reading books about mindfulness to renew your knowledge, as it is easy to fall back in our fast-paced lives.

We don't need to "wait" for another second. Instead, we can enjoy breathing in and out for our nourishment and healing. We can use that time to notice that we will soon be able to have food, and we can be happy and grateful during that time. Instead of waiting, we can generate joy.

You don't have to complain about waiting again. What's the rush for anyways? Whenever you're standing in line or in traffic. Take a minute to observe people and the place around you, take a few deep breaths, and focus on your breath. That way you'll never have to wait.


Ahead are four reasons why you should eat with your hands. Give it a try, it's fun!

  1. It makes you eat mindfully

    Get your hands dirty, lick your fingers, screw etiquette, enjoy your food. Instead of mindlessly putting food into your mouth with your food, eating with your hand makes you feel its texture and temperature. Plus, you can't use your phone when your hands are covered with sauce or whatever, you actually can't really do anything besides eating. Even watching tv while eating with your hands can be challenging!

  2. You'll never burn your tongue again

    Your hands will test the food for you so you don't harm your digestive system. If it's too hot, then you won't put it in your mouth, simple, but very effective. Can someone tell why we stopped eating with our hands?

  3. Your meal will be more enjoyable

    Just think, most of our favorite foods are the ones we eat with our hands. Pizza, burgers, tacos, burritos, cookies, oh I can keep going on. Yeah, pasta is great but is it as good as pizza? To prove my point, just think, have you ever went to a fancy restaurant and had to eat your pizza with a fork and a knife? Yup, IT'S NOT THE SAME!

  4. Helps with overeating and digestion:

    I've read many studies that say that when eating with our hands, there are millions of nerve endings that will  make our body aware of the food you are about to eat. Plus, our fingertips  release enzymes that help digest our food more efficiently. I'm no expert on that, but all I know is that when I eat with my hands I enjoy my food more during and after. When you eat with your hands you're more in contact with your body and your meal and you'll be able to recognize when you're satisfied and it's time to lick your fingertips, then wash your hands.

Notes on how to eat with your hands:

In most cultures, including mine, we only use our right hand to eat (well except if you're eating a burger..) the left hand is considered dirty because it's for the washroom. Basically, right hand for clean activities; left hand for dirty ones.

*All the quotes here are from "How To Eat" By Thich Nhat Hanh.