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Nutrition experts say social distancing can be used to reconnect our relationship with food

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Posted at 2:55 PM, Apr 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-16 15:55:10-04

WACO, TX — We've all seen the memes joking about over eating quarantine supplies, but in reality experts say this time could be spent reconnecting with our bodies.

"A lot of us are pretty disconnected from our bodies" said Registered Dietitian, Ashley Hurst, M.S. R.D. L.D.

She explained that because of the hectic nature of most modern day lives, most people have a disconnected relationship with their bodies and in turn, the food they feed themselves.

"I think this is a great opportunity right now to check in with yourself and practice some intuitive eating,“ said Hurst.

Explaining intuitive eating as listening and being aware of your body's ques, which can be different for everyone.

“ Is it hunger that I feel? Or is it emotion coming up that needs some recognition,“ Hurst said.

Saying that hunger can manifest in many ways, like cold sweats, stomach rumbling, and more, whats tricky though, is that thirst and other feelings can manifest as what might be perceived as hunger.

“Maybe drink some water and check in with yourself As to how you’re feeling, am I feeling scared and my feeling happy Am I feeling restless?“ said Hurst.

Experts explain its important to be in a more relaxed state when eating, as digestion is highly affected by emotion.

“Basically only have two modes, we have a fight or flight and rest and digest, So it’s really important to transition your body, To that rest and relaxed state, Well you can digest better,“ said Hurst.

Before a meal, Hurst suggests practicing relaxation breathing, like 5-7-3 breathing, for a few minutes to get your body settled.

With 70% of the body's immune system stemming from healthy gut bacteria, Hurst explains its important to be able to read the signals your body is sending you.

“You can really use this time in a way to become more connected with food - and understanding how to support your immune system,“ she said.

They also said that social distancing could be a good time to reconnect with your body, listening to what it needs and addressing feelings you're experiencing.