Jeannette BessingerJeannette Bessinger, Board Certified Holistic Health Counselor and owner of Balance for Life LLC, is a co-author of the upcoming book Whole Life Nutrition A Simple Approach to Nourishing America's Busy Families, and the meal and recipe designer for the Dr. Jonny Bowden’s The Healthiest Meals on Earth 50 Recipes and Why You Should Eat These Foods (release: spring of ’08). A motivational speaker and health/nutrition educator, Jeannette regularly gives talks and classes to businesses, corporations, non–profits, wellness centers, hospitals, colleges and faith–based organizations with an interest in wellness and disease prevention. Jeannette has provided services in health education and prevention for individuals and groups in a wide variety of venues for fifteen years. Her professional specialty is the development and facilitation of unique, effective lifestyle change programs targeting complex health and wellness issues such as obesity, chronic stress, family balance and disease prevention. Creator of the Whole Life Nutrition™ approach to health improvement, she currently runs these successful lifestyle change programs in both hospital and holistic settings. Jeannette acts as a lifestyle health consultant to several public and private groups and coalitions working to improve the health of schools and cities. She was a lead investigator and strategist on a citywide assessment and intervention plan for obesity funded by the RI Department of Health. She also designed and facilitated an obesity prevention program for Head Start with a grant from the American Association of Pediatrics. A graduate among the first class of women at Columbia College, Columbia University, Jeannette has pursued an extensive, multi–modal education in teaching, health and wellness. As a very busy wife and mother of two children, she understands first hand how challenging it can be to maintain a healthy balanced lifestyle as a working parent. With a personal history of autoimmune disease and diabetes, she knows how vital it is to put your health first on your priority list. Much of the depth and practical nature of Jeannette's material arises directly from her own efforts to meet the challenges of balancing health, family and a lively career.
Host: What are some tips for chewing my food well?
Jeannette Bessinger: The first tip, if you tend to be a quick eater, it is for you to try to remember, just slow yourself down. So, if you can put up a little sign where you eat that literally says slow down and chew, that will help you because chewing is such an automatic response that unless we remind it, will go into our natural habits.
Another thing that you can do is to take a few relaxing breaths. By that I mean when you are sitting before your food, typically we dive right in and start to eat it. When you are sitting there, take a moment, relax, feel yourself sitting in your chair and take a breath to about three quarters full, hold it for just a moment and then exhale. If you do that three or four times, it will relax your body, it will slow you down and it will give you time to reprogram your mind to chew that food.
Another tip is to put your fork down between bites, instead of shoveling, take a bite put it down and spend some time. If you are very disciplined you might try counting. Give yourself 15 or 22s or if you can get up to 25 even while you are practicing that would be great.