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Mindful Eating, Mindful Life

By Thich Nhat Hanh and Dr. Lilian Cheung
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  • Contains 11 key ideas
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Savor by Thich Nhat Hanh and Dr. Lilian Cheung

Savor (2010) provides advice and inspiration on how to find inner peace, joy and strength – especially for those trying to sustainably lose weight – with Buddhist teachings and techniques for appreciating the richness of life in the present moment. It also draws on the latest nutritional science research on the best ways to eat and exercise, presenting readers with a holistic method for improving their physical, psychological and spiritual well-being, and thereby transforming their lives.

Key idea 1 of 11

Buddhist teachings backed up by nutritional science provide an effective, holistic method to tackling your weight problem.

There is a growing, multi-billion-dollar weight-loss industry in the West, but, despite this, rates of obesity have increased to epidemic levels. Many people spend years struggling to lose weight with fad diets and pills, often with very little success. Clearly, the current market solutions are failing to solve their weight problems. 

The reason the weight-loss industry is not solving people’s weight problems is that it pays little attention to the deeper issues of physical, psychological and spiritual suffering. This suffering is not just the individual’s responsibility; it is also the result of wider societal influences.

Society today encourages more eating and less exercise – mass advertising promotes excessively salty, sugary and fatty foods, while meals have become oversized. At the same time, people’s lifestyles have become much more sedentary. For example, the average North American home contains more TVs than people, and studies confirm that spending several hours a day in front of the TV is highly correlated with obesity.

Given these issues, it is evident that to tackle your weight problem you need to be aware of how forces in society are impacting your own life; namely, how they encourage an unhealthy lifestyle that causes you to suffer, and how this suffering in turn causes you to eat more. If you reflect deeply on this vicious cycle, then you can begin to resist it.

This is where a Buddhist approach gets to the heart of the problem. It teaches you how to gain deep insight into the suffering that underlies your unhealthy lifestyle. This insight enables you to take control of your thoughts, feelings and behavior so that you can transform your life.

Combining the approaches of Buddhism and the advice of nutritional science, you have a sustainable, holistic method to losing weight and transforming your life.

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