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  • 15 Feb 2020 4:00 PM | Jennifer Oetting (Administrator)

    By Caroline Baerten MS, RDN, CDN

    What does Food Justice mean to health professionals and mindful eating teachers?

    A just food system is one in which the production, distribution, and consumption of food is unaffected by systemic inequalities based on race, class, ability, or gender.Through the lens of mindfulness and compassion, we are able to see clearly the injustice taking place on the level of agricultural pollution and harmful food production methods. When we look even deeper, we also become aware of the structural causes for food injustice. 

    For health professionals and mindful eating teachers, it is critical to recognize that food injustice affects those at the bottom of the “power pyramid” the most. For centuries, the Western world has been dominated by White men who prioritized themselves above all else.Women, children, and people of color (Black and NBPOC), in both Europe and the US, have had the least privilege and the least access to a rich variety and supply of food. Reasons could range from limitations on property ownership, where they might have cultivated their own produce, to socially-engineered financial dependence on a male relative.      

    In his  “Food for Thought” article, Chef Alex Askew draws attention to the conditions in which groups of people used to live, and are living now, which may explain in part why certain individuals in our society are less physically and mentally healthy than others. The nature of our relationships at home or in the community can be either supportive or trauma-invoking, and all of these relationships shape our daily food choices, overall health, and psychological well-being. 

    Food justice is social justice, as food is our most intimate connection with ourselves, our communities, and the food traditions that have been passed down through the generations. Unfortunately, many of the bonding and nurturing qualities related to cooking and eating were disrupted over the centuries. In many ways, the (cooking) fire was extinguished and replaced by a troubled relationship with foods, while the rich diversity of female bodies became ruled solely by measures of thinness and fatness.

    Mindful eating helps us look deeply into the belly of the food system and explore how it creates a world where human beings, and especially women, feel disconnected from their food and alienated from the needs of their bodies. The most feared word today is “obesity,” and to be fat is considered a morally repugnant failure. Unfortunately, in a perverse interference with appetite, restraint is offered as the only righteous path to redemption, by both the food and diet industry as well as subsidized health professionals. 

    Eating awareness starts by questioning the origins of food:

    Where is this food coming from and was it produced in a sustainable way? Most kinds of foods, depending on one’s individual body and blueprint, are absolutely fine if they are made with nutritious ingredients (real butter, cream, or cheese, whole-grain flour, free-range meat), instead of foods chemically-modified for a long shelf-life.

    Did the people working in the field, the food production plants, and distribution companies receive equal living wages compared with their male and/or White colleagues higher up the ladder? Food justice addresses racial and socio-economic issues because there cannot be equal access to healthy food without equal access to jobs, income, and transportation.

    What kind of foods and recipes are rooted in your own cultural tradition? Unlike the one-size-fits-all dietary rules certain nutritionists and health professionals are telling us, our behaviors around food and eating not merely individual choices, but expressions of a particular social and economic context. Sharing meals and eating heartwarming comfort foods (often those high in calories!) have been part of our food history for centuries. These recipes and moments of social gathering around the table are especially important for families who migrated, as food is often the only remaining bond they have to their home country.

    Food justice is woven into the fabric of mindful eating. The spiritual practice of mindfulness meditation creates the link between eco-friendly, sustainable food choices and individual wellbeing. It is not just about changing the way we eat, it is about changing the way we live and how we treat each other. 

    Originally published in the Winter 2020 issue of Food for Thought. 

    Get the full issue in the Food for Thought Store!

    TCME Members may access the full issue here.

    Consider signing up for the Food and Social Justice Webinar for more discussion on this topic!

  • 30 Dec 2019 5:57 PM | Jennifer Oetting (Administrator)

    By Lynn Rossy, Ph,D, TCME Board President

    Getting ready for your obligatory diet in January? Well, I have an alternative for you that I think you’ll like better. Even if you ate more than you usually do during the holidays (which is true for most of us and for good reason!), there is a much better way to approach January than a diet. The approach is called mindful eating and let me tell you why you should give it a try.

    This review article published in the Archives of Scientific Psychology makes it very clear that going on a diet might result in a few pounds lost, but those pounds will be regained, and often even more. Through a complicated process, the body has a way of finding a certain weight range that it’s comfortable in and it works to maintain that range.

    The good news is that, contrary to much of the press, being in a larger body does not automatically mean that you are less healthy. Aphramor (2010), who extensively reviews the literature, writes that the belief that weight loss, even if minimal, is related to improvements in health, is not valid and is not substantiated. In addition, weight loss efforts can result in a wide range of eating disorders. And, “yo-yo dieting” where you lose and gain weight over and over again, is related to heart disease, bone density loss, and all-cause mortality (coronary mortality, in particular), as well as a growing number of other health conditions.

    As a much kinder and joyous alternative, mindful eating provides a way of eating that allows you to relish in one of the greatest pleasures of life—eating without judgment. Instead of restricting, mindful eaters know they can have whatever they want to eat so they are less likely to find themselves overeating and then feeling guilty. You train to be aware of your body’s wisdom about what it wants, how much it wants, and when to start and stop eating. You train to be aware of the other needs the body has and you take care of them as well.

    Having taught mindful eating for thirteen years, I can say with conviction that mindful eating changes the way you eat and the way that you feel about your body so that you feel nourished and supported. The focus is not on weight, but wellbeing. Wellbeing is a state of physical, emotional, mental and spiritual attunement, and mindful eating is one of the practices that creates harmony in your body and life.

    Start your 2020 in community with people around the world who will be coming together for World Mindful Eating Month, sponsored by The Center for Mindful Eating. This year’s theme is “Growing your Mindful Eating Practice by Planting the Seeds of Self-Compassion.” We are offering a FREE guided Mindful Eating Program for the whole month of January. You can sign up here.

    When you learn to develop loving-kindness toward yourself, your approach to eating will reflect your growing friendship with your body, mind, and heart. Eating is not just a personal act, but an act of love for yourself, your community and the world.

    Join us for Mindful Eating Month and give up diets forever!

    Aphramor, L. (2010). Validity of claims made in weight management research: A narrative review of dietetic articles. Nutrition Journal, 9, 1–9. http://dx

    Rothblum, E. (2018). Slim chance for permanent weight loss. Archives of Scientific Psychology, 6, 63–69. 10.1037/arc0000043

    Originally published at

  • 19 Nov 2019 7:29 AM | TCME Admin (Administrator)

    Raising Mindful Eaters (While Healing Your Own Relationship with Food and Body)

    By Jenna Hollenstein, MS, RDN, CDN

    In ancient cultures and for thousands of years, indigenous peoples have had a traditional relationship with local foods that includes a connection to the territory, a feeling of being responsible for the ecosystems and a spiritual kinship. 

    Children are born with the innate capacity for mindful eating. They naturally recognize and respond to hunger and fullness and, with skillful guidance from parents, can maintain this satisfying relationship with food throughout their lives.

    Unfortunately, many of us lose our connection with this natural ability as we grow up. The diet culture we live in tells us our bodies cannot be trusted to guide us to eat what, when, and how much we need. Intolerance for body diversity causes even the medical establishment to advise parents to control children’s and young adult’s food intake, ultimately altering their body trust as they mature into adults. Misunderstandings about the connection between eating, weight, and health distort our relationship with food, making it difficult to recognize and respond to what is arising in our present-moment body. Finally, disconnection from our emotions can make it difficult to discern whether the hunger we are feeling (and feeding) lies in our bellies, our hearts, or our minds.

    Such confusion presents an opportunity for mindfulness practitioners to be with what is. By connecting with our bodies, observing our thoughts without judgment, and staying present with our actual experience, we can eat mindfully, modifying our eating according to our body’s’ needs, and experience joy and satisfaction in our food choices. The following framework can help you address your own confusion about food and eating while nurturing and maintaining the mindful eating capacity of your children: 

    1. Model Mindful Eating and Body Appreciation

    No matter what we mean to communicate with our kids about food and our bodies, it’s what they hear us say and see us do that make lasting impressions. Refrain from speaking harshly about your body or anyone else’s body. Treat your body and all bodies with kindness and compassion. Feed yourself regularly and satisfyingly throughout the day. If you have work to do on your relationship with food and your body, now’s the time.

    2. Make a Variety of Satisfying Food Available

    Our bodies need carbohydrates, proteins, and fats to feel nourished and satisfied. All foods contain various combinations of these nutrients. By making a variety of foods available in the home - various fruits and vegetables, grains and cereals, snacks and play foods, proteins, nuts, seeds, and other energy-dense foods - kids are more likely to choose a variety to meet their ever-changing needs.

    3. Leave Morality Out of Eating

    Part of modeling mindful eating and body appreciation is not labeling foods as good or bad, not feeling “guilty” about “indulging” but in mindfully enjoying whatever we choose to eat. The carrot and the carrot cake have no inherent moral value; each is just a different combination of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats and all foods can fit into a healthful and mindful way of eating. When we leave the morality out of eating, the focus can shift to what brings us pleasure and how we feel when we eat different foods. 

    4. Eat Mindfully Together When Possible

    Family meals are invaluable but they don’t need to be perfect or even happen every day to benefit your family. Do what you can, knowing that the connection formed through the cooperative planning, preparing, serving, eating, and cleaning up of a meal creates a lasting foundation for mindful eating.

    5. Demystify Heart Hunger

    Eating serves many purposes, including soothing a hungry heart. There is nothing wrong with comfort eating. Period. It can be empowering and illuminating to understand when and why we are eating to feed our bodies versus soothing painful emotions. Talking about emotions openly and non-judgmentally normalizes them and helps us all learn to tolerate the full range of our experience.


    Originally published in Food for Thought Autumn 2019: Pregnancy and Families

    In this issue:

    • Pregnancy: A Time to Listen Even More Closely to Your Body, by Dr. Cinzia Pezzolesi

    • Educating Parents (and Thereby Children) about Mindful Eating, by Dr. Claudia Vega
    • Raising Mindful Eaters (While Healing Your Own Relationship with Food and Body), by Jenna Hollenstein, MS, RD, CDN
    • Setting Your Mindful Eating Intention, by Jenna Hollenstein, MS, RD, CDN

    Available in our Food for Thought Store for non-members.

    Food for Thought is free for TCME members in the Member's Food for Thought Library!

    Not a member? Join Today! | Member Benefits

  • 11 Nov 2019 11:20 AM | TCME Admin (Administrator)

    Setting Your Mindful Eating Intention

    by Jenna Hollenstein,MS,  RDN, CD

    Setting intentions can help us maintain an essential connection with our mindful eating practice. This issue [of Food for Thought] covered a lot of ground, from mindful eating in pregnancy to introducing the principles of mindful eating to parents so they can guide their children to maintain their own mindful eating sovereignty. From pregnancy to parenthood, when it comes to raising mindful eaters who trust their own intelligent bodies, intentions can be one supportive tool.

    Use the following examples as suggestions or starting points in developing your own intentions for yourself and your family. They can be conversation starters with your children in terms of how they would like to nourish their own relationship with food and their bodies: Sample intention during pregnancy: “May I receive and respond to the sensations my body sends to me. May I nourish my own body as it instinctively nourishes my growing child. May I trust that my body is accommodating, flexible, and wise.”

    Your own mindful eating intention during pregnancy:


    Sample intention for new parents: “May I trust the intuitive wisdom of my child’s body to guide them to eat what, when, and how much they need in order to feel nourished and satisfied. May I support them in maintaining a connection with this wisdom, meal to meal, day to day, year to year.”

    Your own intention in introducing mindful eating to your children: ______________________________________________________________________

    Sample intention for family meals: “May we enjoy this food together, savoring its flavors, nourishing our bodies, and appreciating the simple pleasure of sharing a meal.”

    Your own mindful eating intention for family meals: ______________________________________________________________________

    Originally published in Food for Thought Autumn 2019: Pregnancy and Families

    In this issue:

    • Pregnancy: A Time to Listen Even More Closely to Your Body, by Dr. Cinzia Pezzolesi

    • Educating Parents (and Thereby Children) about Mindful Eating, by Dr. Claudia Vega

    • Raising Mindful Eaters (While Healing Your Own Relationship with Food and Body), by Jenna Hollenstein, MS, RD, CDN

    • Setting Your Mindful Eating Intention, by Jenna Hollenstein, MS, RD, CDN

    Available in our Food for Thought Store Food for Thought is free for TCME members in the Member's Food for Thought Library

    Not a member? Join Today! | Member Benefits

  • 03 Oct 2019 8:13 PM | TCME Admin (Administrator)

    Food for Thought Autumn 2019: Pregnancy and Families

    In this issue:

    • Pregnancy: A Time to Listen Even More Closely to Your Body, by Dr. Cinzia Pezzolesi
    • Educating Parents (and Thereby Children) about Mindful Eating, by Dr. Claudia Vega
    • Raising Mindful Eaters (While Healing Your Own Relationship with Food and
    • Body), by Jenna Hollenstein, MS, RD, CDN
    • Setting Your Mindful Eating Intention, by Jenna Hollenstein, MS, RD, CDN

    Available in our Food for Thought Store

    Food for Thought is free for TCME members in the Member's Food for Thought Library

    Not a member? Join Today! | Member Benefits

    In this issue of Food for Thought, we discuss the essential role of clinicians and parents in fostering mindful eating in the lives of pregnant women and children, respectively. In truth, the capacity for mindful eating already exists in all of us. Our roles as dietitians, therapists, counselors, coaches, parents, and caregivers is to create the container in which that innate capacity can thrive. Communication is key and, in all four pieces, you will notice the emphasis on talking regularly about mindful eating as well as feelings, experiences, and discoveries. 

     In “Pregnancy: A Time to Listen Even More Closely to Your Body,” Dr. Cinzia Pezzolesi highlights the ways in which clinicians can partner with their pregnant patients to nourish and sustain body trust, quite possibly setting them -- and their children -- up for a lifetime of satisfying mindful eating. In “Educating Parents (and Thereby Children) about Mindful Eating,” Dr. Claudia Vega discusses the complexity and nuance of educating parents about how to bring this practice into the home. Both reassuring and practical, Dr. Vega’s guidance addresses the elusive issue of how to introduce these practices. 

     The next two pieces are written by nutrition therapist, Jenna Hollenstein. The educational handout “Raising Mindful Eaters (While Healing Your Own Relationship with Food and Body),” outlines five principles to bring mindful eating into the home, while “Setting Your Mindful Eating Intention” offers a contemplation for helping us all to maintain a connection with our mindful eating practice. Whether during pregnancy or parenthood, examples are given to help you create your own mindful eating intention. 

    Available in our Food for Thought Store

    Food for Thought is free for TCME members in the Member's Food for Thought Library

    Not a member? Join Today! | Member Benefits

  • 12 Sep 2019 12:23 PM | Maggie Sewall

    Food, Sustainability and the Role of Mindfulness

    By Caroline Baerten, MA, RD

    The skill of ecological perception

    “The ecological crisis may be the result of a collective perceptual disorder in our species, a unique form of myopia which it now forces us to correct.” – David Abram

    I take Abram’s statement quite literally. Our “collective myopia” is one manifestation of psychic numbing – a psychological defense against witnessing the pain of the Earth.

    Full awareness can hurt. In response we build defenses, or we choose among a variety of convenient distractions. We become numb to our feelings, to what we might hear and see, and our myopic defense blinds us to the severity of current Earth conditions.

    In his book “The Voice of the Earth,” Theodore Roszak presents a theory in which he explains that the roots of our collective behavior toward the Earth can be found in the split between “in-here” and “out-there.” This thinking creates a large gap we feel between ourselves and the nonhuman nature (animals, plants, minerals). If we would experience ourselves as interconnected and with fluidity of boundaries, this would manifest in more empathy with family, friend, community, humanity and similarly with the whole of the nonhuman world.

    It is a shift of perspective from attention of my suffering (I, mine) toward more environmental, contextual awareness.

    Our sensory capacities – taste, smell, sight, hearing and touch – are the fundamental avenues of connection between self and the world. The deadening of our senses is at the heart of the environmental crisis and reawakening them through mindfulness is an integral step toward renewing our bond with the Earth and all living beings.

    Slowing down and learning to attend

    Attending is the flip side of psychic numbing. Focused attention produces a richness of color, a depth of sensory experience. The ability to fully use our attentional capacity is a learned skill, requiring the practice of mindfulness and awareness. When we slow down and eat quietly, we can really enjoy our food on a sensual level.

    We make behavioral (and subjective) choices based on what we see, smell, hear...

    In the context of our ecological situation and the need for sustainable choices, it would be wise to become more mindful of where we place our attention.

    According to Vietnamese Zen teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, the first step is learning to attend, the cultivation of a “wakeful presence.” When the mind isn’t present in the body, we look, but we don’t see; we listen, but we don’t hear; we eat, but we don’t know the flavor of the food; we breathe, but we don’t feel alive.

    Cherish all life on Earth – cultivating compassion and learning ways to protect our people and the planet.

    In love with the Earth

    When fueled by beauty and sensuality, our relationship with the visual world may move our hearts. As what we see and perceive becomes meaningful and vital, we feel it in every cell of our bodies. Participation is felt by sensations in our bodies and shifts in our hearts. Participation in this way is essential if we are to care enough for the Earth; we need to take time to look and to view her through “love eyes.”

    The bread in my hand contains the universe

    While we eat we can be mindful of the food and mindful of the community. It is a chance to receive the many gifts of the Earth from which we would not otherwise benefit if the mind is elsewhere. Nothing comes from nothing. Bread comes from the wheat fields, which need rain and sunshine. So every slice of bread also contains sunshine, the clouds, the Earth, time, space, and the hard work of the farmer, supplier and the baker. The whole universe has come together in the piece of bread. Eating mindfully is a way of showing appreciation for all the hard and loving work that has gone into creating this meal.

    Interconnectivity and compassion

    Having the opportunity to sit with our family and enjoy wonderful food is something precious, something not everybody has because many people in the world are hungry

    Realizing this makes us aware of the unique eating moment, and care and gratitude naturally arise.

    This awakening through the energy of mindfulness and compassion is what we need to live in a sustainable way.

    It is only through clear understanding of the impact of our actions that we can see how unwholesome food patterns create suffering for the body and mind. Insight into what the short- and long-term impact will be for the body will bring a shift in awareness: Becoming aware of the negative tendencies, especially greed and the feeling of “not enough,” and learning to eat the right amount of food. In our Western society, a lot of food waste is often based on ignorance about what the effect may be on our food production system.

    Thanks to the correct view of our consumption, we will see more clearly the effect of eating behavior on:


          Our human body and emotional and mental states.

          Our production methods (industrial scale, methods, food supplies, forests, grain prices, global emission).

    Eating in a sustainable way is about the quality of our food and the determination to ingest only food that keeps the body healthy and compassion alive. It is eating in a way that doesn’t cover up the stressful feelings but acknowledges them and helps to transform them.

    Mindful consumption and eating involve recognizing exactly what we need to consume (in all senses of the word) and what not to consume to keep our bodies, minds and the Earth healthy.

    This article originally appeared in the Spring 2015 issue of Food for Thought

    Food for Thought store

    Members Food for Thought library

    Caroline Baerten (Belgium) is a mindfulness-based dietitian/RD, qualified chef and integrative psychotherapist (i.t) specializing in work with disturbed eating behavior, weight issues and sustainability. Her passion is urban gardening in the heart of Brussels and organizing farm-to-table dinners in collaboration with local farmers. Comments on this article are welcome and can be reached at

  • 25 Aug 2019 11:07 AM | Maggie Sewall

    The Center for Mindful Eating is thrilled to host a webinar with author and trauma specialist David Treleaven, PhD, “Becoming Trauma-Sensitive: Making Mindfulness and Meditation Safe for Trauma Survivors”

    This webinar will be held September 11 at 1:00 pm EST

    Learn more and Register (link to event on website:

    Designed for wellness professionals, this webinar will introduce you to the topic and begin to equip you with the tools you need to offer mindfulness in a safe, effective, trauma-sensitive way. 

    You will leave the workshop: 

    • Understanding why meditation can create dysregulation for people who’ve experienced trauma and specific ways you can prevent this; 

    • Prepared to recognize symptoms of traumatic stress while offering mindfulness interventions; 

    • Informed about current empirical research regarding mindfulness and trauma, including evidence-based interventions you can apply immediately to your work; 

    • Equipped with tools and modifications to help you work skillfully with dysregulated arousal, traumatic flashbacks, and trauma-related dissociation. 

    • Understanding the relationship between individual and systemic forms of trauma, including responsibilities to educate oneself about power, oppression, and social context. 

    Whether you’re a beginning or veteran practitioner, anyone engaged in offering contemplative practices will benefit from this webinar, including therapists, coaches, and meditation, classroom, yoga, or religious teachers. 

    Learn more and Register (link to event on website:


    David Treleaven, PhD, is an acclaimed author, educator, and trauma professional whose work focuses on the intersection of mindfulness and trauma.

    Utilizing contemporary research to inform best practices, David has offered workshops on trauma-sensitive mindfulness at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, as well as keynote speeches at the Omega Institute in New York and the Institute for Mindfulness in South Africa in Johannesburg.

    Trained in counseling psychology at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, he received his doctorate in psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies and is currently a visiting scholar at Brown University. 

    You can find him at

  • 19 Aug 2019 12:11 PM | TCME Admin (Administrator)

    Join the #MindfulEatingRevolution

    by Lynn Rossy, PhD

    Mindful eating and the associated compassionate approach to our bodies is revolutionary and against the cultural norm. We are revolutionaries when we stake out control of our minds and bodies from the dominant culture and corporate conditioning that says we are anything less than wonderful and perfect just as we are. We are revolutionaries when we engage in the process of looking deeply at our lives and the way we eat.

    Before I taught mindful eating, I had been teaching mindfulness in both the tradition of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and Theravadan Buddhism since 1999. I clearly understood the importance of mindfulness in relieving the suffering that all human beings experience just because they are alive in this world. However, teaching mindful eating since 2007 and being on the board of The Center for Mindful Eating since 2015 have taught me how important the work of mindful eating is to our sanity and freedom with food and our bodies. And since we eat and live in our bodies every day, it might seem obvious that the relationships with have to both are crucial to our wellbeing and happiness.

     In July, we just finished an annual retreat of The Center for Mindful Eating in New York with board members from all over the world. We sat around the campfire and shared our visions, hopes, and dreams. (Full disclosure: there was a campfire but we were rained out and had a “virtual” campfire inside the meditation hall.). The words that kept coming in my head were “we need a #MindfulEatingRevolution.

     It is clear to me that mindful eating and the associated compassionate approach to our bodies is revolutionary and against the cultural norm. We are revolutionaries when we stake out control of our minds and bodies from the dominant culture and corporate conditioning that says we are anything less than wonderful and perfect just as we are. We are revolutionaries when we engage in the process of looking deeply at our lives and the way we eat which can “involve or cause a complete or dramatic change”—the definition of revolutionary.

     As a famous meditation teacher, Shunryu Suzuki, said, “Each of you is perfect the way you are … and you could use some improvement.” Buddhism is full of paradox and this is one of them. Of course, you are perfect the way you are, and yet I’m sure that there are a few of you who would like to improve upon the way that you approach food and eating. Along with the resources available on The Center for Mindful Eating website, I offer a ten program called Eat for Life, with classes staring in the fall.

     The Eat for Life Program has benefited thousands of people and I would love to have you join me on the path to mindful eating and living.  Whether you are a person interested in a better relationship with food and your body or a professional wanting to add mindful eating to your services, this could be the program for you!

     The skill of mindfulness is at the core of Eat for Life, and research on the class shows mindfulness is the key to changing how you eat and how you feel about your body. Learning to practice on a regular basis, mindfulness will be used to examine every aspect of the eating experience, as well as your emotions and thoughts related to eating, to your body, and to the other challenges you might face. Above all else, mindfulness gives you the skills of clarity, resilience, and kindness which provide the basis for choosing the food and the life you want.

     The class is taught LIVE, online over a platform called Zoom. If you have a computer, you will be able to take this class from anywhere around the world. I have both professionals and the general public in the class to create a unique and rich tapestry of learning for everyone. We all have something to learn by examining ourselves more deeply and compassionately. We are all students and teachers.

     Drop deeply into a relationship with yourself for ten weeks and see what a #mindfuleating revolution can do for you.  For more information, click here or you can enroll by going to my website and click on the class that you want. Classes are on Tuesdays from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. Central Time or Thursdays from 12:00 – 2:00 p.m. Central Time starting in September.

     If you are interested in taking the class and receiving CE credits (for mental health professionals, nutritionists, dietitians) please register here. The fee of $63 covers up to 21 CE/CPE Credits.

      Please let me know if you have any questions about the class before you enroll by emailing me at

    Contributed by TCME Sponsor Tasting Mindfulness

  • 04 Jul 2019 7:34 PM | TCME Admin (Administrator)

    Food for Thought Summer 2019: Mindfulness and Trauma​

    In this issue:

    • Mistaken View: How You See Survivors, by Char Wilkins, MSW, LSCW​
    • Mindful Intervention with Trauma Survivors Seeking to Repair Their Relationship with Food and Body, by Alice Rosen, MSEd, LMHC
    • Recovering from Traumatic Experiences through
    • Mindfulness, by Cecilia Clemente Ph.D, Psych.D
    • Walking Meditation, by Cuca Azinovic, Certified Mindfulness Teacher​​​​​​​

    Available in our Food for Thought Store

    Food for Thought is free for TCME members in the Member's Food for Thought Library

    Not a member? Join Today! | Member Benefits


    This issue of Food for Thought investigates the intersection of trauma, disordered eating, and the role of mindfulness in supporting recovery. Trauma can take many forms: experiencing or witnessing violence, abuse, and neglect, sudden loss, and even chronic oppression has been shown to have a traumatic impact. While most people have experienced trauma at some point in their lives, many factors influence their long-term impacts, which can be significant and life altering. Among the lasting effects of trauma are disordered eating patterns.

    In recent years, mindfulness-based therapeutic approaches have been shown to be an effective approach to trauma therapy, when used appropriately and in combination with other therapeutic modalities. While not a substitute for professional training in mindfulness-based and trauma informed therapies, this issue of Food for Thought explores the various ways mindfulness can benefit trauma survivors with disordered eating patterns and the clinicians who work with them.

    In “Mistaken View: How You See Survivors,” Char Wilkins, MSW, LSCW, discusses how mindfulness can help both clinicians and clients recognize the strength and wisdom of survivors of abuse. Many survivors of abuse view their eating behaviors negatively, as evidence of weakness and problems to be fixed. Clinicians who work with survivors sometimes also carry these same misconceptions. As Char Wilkins describes, mindful, non-judging acceptance can help survivors and clinicians recognize these behaviors as evidence of the desire to survive in the most challenging of circumstances, thus honoring survivors’ strength and wisdom.

    Alice Rosen, MSEd, LMHC, discusses the role of mindfulness in trauma informed therapy. As Alice describes in “Mindful Intervention with Trauma Survivors Seeking to Repair Their Relationship with Food and Body,” trauma informed therapy continuously prioritizes the need for physical and emotional safety during the therapeutic process. A clinician’s own mindfulness practice can assist them in navigating this approach with clients.

    The educational Handout, “Recovering from Traumatic Experiences through Mindfulness,” by Cecilia Clemente Ph.D, Psych.D explains for clients how trauma affects the brain and how mindfulness can mitigate these effects. She also provides specific, practical mindfulness interventions clients can use when trauma-related symptoms are triggered.

    Traditional, eyes-closed, sitting meditation can be challenging for trauma survivors, as they can trigger traumatic memories and feelings of unsafety. The scripted meditation, “Walking Meditation,” by Cuca Azinovic, Certified Mindfulness Teacher, is a grounding meditation practice, designed to calm the mind by anchoring it in awareness of bodily sensations.

    On behalf of the TCME Board of Directors, we hope you find this issue of Food for Thought informative and helpful. Comments can be sent to

  • 28 Jun 2019 7:11 AM | TCME Admin (Administrator)

    TCME co-founder Megrette Fletcher discusses her work as a diabetes and mindful eating educator at Hélène T. Stelian Coaching.

    "Prior to meditating on a consistent basis, I worked as a diabetes educator. I think most people imagine having diabetes means that they can’t eat certain foods or that they must radically change everything about their life. These thoughts are fueled by society and companies selling products targeting people with diabetes, but it’s not true. Having diabetes is a condition that requires you to listen to your body and to learn how to balance what you want to eat and need to eat. Mindfulness can help a person hear the story of “can and can’t” and let it go, providing a healing experience that you deeply crave."

    Read more at Megrette Fletcher, Advocate for Mindful Eating for Diabetes, at Hélène T. Stelian Coaching

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