We are delighted to introduce TCME member Nancy Logue, Ph.D. in our January Member Spotlight. Nancy is a psychotherapist dedicated to helping people improve their lives by taking better care of themselves and their relationships. She has many years of experience working with anxiety, depression, eating problems of all kinds (binge-eating, anorexia, bulimia), behavioral disorders and distressed couples. For over 20 years she has been an outpatient therapist helping men, women, couples, teens and families to take better care of themselves and each other.
She would like to highlight her decades of working with all types of eating problems, her upcoming weekly support group for users of the EatRightNow mindful eating app as well as her Change the Message efforts : Workshop Facilitator Guide, sporks, posters and buttons.
Q. How would you describe your mindful eating work?
Mindful eating is a part of my work in many ways: as a psychotherapist with individuals seeking a healthier relationship with food, weight and body image, as a live group facilitator for the EatRightNow app mindful eating program and as partner in ChangetheMessage.com which offers the Inviting Awareness spork with guidance for mindful eating. See www.nancyloguephd.com for more information.
Q: Please share with us your favorite resource for someone who is interested in learning about mindful eating?
What I am most excited about is the EatRightNow app developed by Dr. Judson Brewer, Research Director at the Center for Mindfulness (and TCME board member). See www.goeatrightnow.com for more information. The way the brief video lessons apply mindfulness to habits, especially eating experiences, is so inviting and clear. The people I have shared it with have found it helpful. The app offers all kinds of interactive support such as encouragement and tools for checking in with stress and paying attention to sensations plus a variety of short mindfulness exercises. I have found the practices to be very easy to use, and deep, expanding my own mindful awareness.
The flipped classroom is great because people take the lessons with the app on their own, at their own pace. The live group I facilitate in my office includes mindfulness practices, peer and expert support to help participants develop a sustainable healthy relationship with food and improved self-care. See www.peacefuleating.net for more information. I am enjoying the live group for anyone using the app with Dr. Brewer and Dr. Boudette on Wednesdays (noon EST).
Another resource I want to mention again is the Inviting Awareness Spork from Change the Message. Not only a cool, earth-friendly utensil, it comes with basic prompts that encourage the user to be aware of self-talk and to explore the sensations, thoughts and feelings of eating experience. See https://changethemessage.com/product/spork/ for more information.
Q: Do you have a few favorite mindful eating tips to offer?
Create a pleasing ritual
Since we eat repeatedly, we can make eating an opportunity for frequent mindfulness. It can be fun or soothing to create a little ritual perhaps before eating, as though to cleanse the palate. Focus on beauty, joy or gratitude. Simply pausing to turn the attention to breathing in and out, even once or twice can change one’s state right there and then. We can do this as a treat for ourselves more than a duty, and focus on the heightened pleasure available when eating this way.
I think many families and ancestors did this regularly with saying grace or enacting other rituals at mealtime.
This fits with another tip or catch phrase I learned from Jean Kristeller, “Eating like a gourmet”. She also taught mindful eating as a dynamic synthesis of inner wisdom (intuitive eating) with outer wisdom (nutrition information).
Q: Tell us a little how you came to this path.
I am fortunate to have been raised in a family that celebrated the cooking and sharing of fresh and homemade food. My grandmother’s simple blueberry pie was a legendary delight. As a young woman, I experimented with all sorts of health-oriented eating regimens. I saw the contradiction of rigidity in pursuit of health. My goals expanded to include a sense of peace and harmony and a respect for the complexity of my own and others’ changing feelings and needs. Mindful eating takes me directly to the goal of health: living fully moment by moment.
Q: What question have you encountered about mindful eating or mindfulness that makes you cringe?
I take a deep breath when people talk about “watching what you eat” in a harsh tone with the implication that awareness is synonymous with negative judgments and critique or see mindful eating as a useful control strategy.
Q: What is your vision for mindful eating? What do you want mindful eating to help or cure?
Mindful eating has so many potential benefits!
Negative feelings and behaviors around eating are having a significant impact on physical and mental health for so many people. Mindfulness practices help us face our challenging situations and emotions and develop the healthy eating habits that enhance our energy for living life.
Mindful eating can become a door to general mindfulness.
For some people, who struggle to sit still and quiet for any length of time, mindful eating might be useful as a vivid focus to engage in the development of moment-to-moment awareness.
Mindful eating is a renewable resource for turning toward life, living more fully and learning through our own experiences. In this culture preoccupied with eating and a whole variety of eating problems, mindfulness can help relieve suffering, improve quality of life and free our attention and energy for other uses!
Q: Would you share with us why you chose to join The Center for Mindful Eating?
I want to support TCME for many reasons. One is that in the wild and wonderful free-for-all internet universe, there are a lot of unhealthy messages circulating about food, weight, dieting, body image and related issues. I am grateful for the quality of material available on the website and the organization’s advocacy for mindful eating as a resource for public health concerns.
Thank you, Nancy, for being a contributing member of The Center for Mindful Eating. All members are welcome to submit their work for our Member Spotlight. Not a member? Learn more about the benefits or join today!
Change the message is a campaign to empower individuals and communities to resist the culture of body negativity. Healthy messages make a world of difference!
Giving time and attention to conscious eating experiences supports healthy relationships with food, body and self. Use the spork to invite awareness of your senses, thoughts and feelings as you eat.
This clever spoon-fork-knife utensil is great for your lunchbox, purse, backpack, picnic basket or briefcase.
Machine washable and very durable, the spork also reduces the negative environmental impacts of disposable plastic tableware. Available in aqua, lime or raspberry, sporks are a great gift for you, your friends and your family.
For every spork purchased before January 30th, Change the Message will contribute $3.00 to support the work of the Center for Mindful Eating.