Why do I munch?

why do I munch - too many cashews

This is a problem that plagues me incessantly. Even though I have changed to eat almost all wholesome, organic, raw foods, I tend to just mindlessly munch away on them until I’ve eaten way to much. For example, I like cashews, dates, goji berries, 100% raw chocolate, cranberries, pistachios and they are all good in their own right with lots of nutritional benefits, but I eat way to many.

Why do I munch mindlessly?

why do I munch - too many goji berriesOne of the big problems is eating while doing and thinking about something else. This engages the conscious brain in an activity other than eating, and leaves the subconscious brain to handle everything to do with the eating side of things. We know from the post –Appreciating your subconscious mind – and working with it – that the subconscious mind has a multitude of apps running that are responding to inputs either from the senses or from conscious thoughts. In this case the conscious mind is off doing other things, so my subconscious mind starts running some apps that it installed most probably when I was very young. Apps like;

  • if you don’t eat enough you’ll be hungry later
  • if you don’t eat quickly, there won’t be enough left for you
  • you haven’t eaten enough yet and you deserve more
  • that food tastes nice and it makes you feel good when you eat it – you deserve to feel good
  • all of this healthy food isn’t enough to feed a big, strong boy

why do I munch? - too much 100% raw chocolateStruggling with my subconscious

There are many, many apps like this running in my subconscious. If I can bring my conscious mind into the present and observe what’s going on, I can sense these apps running. I can feel what’s going on. It’s still hard to stop them. I have to really get my whole conscious mind working on the problem to convince my subconscious to stop forcing me to eat more. I don’t feel hungry at this point, I just feel the desire to put more things in my mouth.

At this point, it’s nice to recall the quote from the Dalai Lama (copied here from the quotes page);

What we call “mind” is a very curious phenomenon. Sometimes it is rigid and resistant to any change. It can also be very flexible as long as we make constant efforts to transform it and convince ourselves, through reflection, that this change is not only possible but essential. To do so, wishes or prayers are not enough. We need to use reason based on experience. One should not expect this transformation to happen overnight, as our old habits will resist any rapid solution.

His Holiness, The 14th Dalai Lama

Calling on my conscious brain to keep up the fight

So I’m going to keep up the effort and try and change the habits of my subconscious mind. Try and change the apps that have been running for so long. I can also try and use EFT or tapping (see The Tapping Solution Website). I’ll try everything. I think the most important thing is bringing the conscious mind seriously into the picture, as often as possible. If I can do this with enough mindfulness, I’ll be able to resist the urge to munch. I know I can succeed.

Also see these pages;

I’d love to hear your experiences and thoughts about this problem of munching. Please leave a comment. Thanks.

4 Responses to “Why do I munch?”

    • Pete

      So true. Those subconscious programs (apps) have been running for such a long time (at least since my teens) and they’ll still run whenever they get the chance.

  1. Roya

    I am a muncher on healthy stuff. Have not controlled it yet and very unhappy about it. Reading your note makes me wonder if making a list of what I munch on maybe the solution. I’ve read about it in the past but never did it. Maybe writing down what I am about to eat will triger the conscious mind. Or maybe looking at a long list of “stuff” I’ve eaten may create some hesitation.

    • Pete

      Hi Roya,

      I’m still struggling with munching. Sometimes I’m in control but not at others. One thing that helps is to put everything I want to eat on a plate. I used to just grab nuts from a bag, and then grab more and more. If I take some of each of the things I want to eat (like cashews, almonds, goji berries, dried figs, dried dates, etc.) and put them all on a plate, then my mind realizes that this is quite a large amount of food. Then I try and eat it as slowly as possible, chewing it a lot, considering the tastes, then after all the chewing, “allowing” it into my body. So really keeping the conscious mind in control.

      If I can do this, it works great, but it’s hard work. I’m always fighting the mindless desire to just overeat stuff.

      Good luck with your fight against this.


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