I have never been an advocate of counting calories when eating for health or weight balance. When I read Jonathan Bailor's book "The Calorie Myth" it further convinced me that the calorie model is outdated and that restricting calories may be harmful to health as well as frustrating. In T.C. Hale's book "Done with Being Fat" he discusses the importance healthy digestion for weight balance.
An issue with weight identifies an issue with digestion. How can you expect your body to have a balanced weight if it is not efficiently processing nutrients and detoxifying waste for you? Another key to weight balance that is becoming prominent in the research is having healthy bacteria in the digestive system. There are many approaches to support healthy digestion but one of the most essential and cheapest is to liquefy your food before swallowing. This promotes healthy bacteria as well as proper digestion. So whether you need to lose weight or gain weight, chewing your food will be important:
Chewing each bite until it is liquefied has many benefits:
1) Breaks down food more thoroughly so that harmful bacteria do not digest it and create gas and bloating and difficulty with reaching your optimal weight.
2) Signals the secretion of enzymes in your mouth and digestive tract (like the enzyme amylase) to ensure that get the most nutrients from the food.
3) Gives your glands the opportunity to detect when you are full and send your brain that signal before you have over-eaten.
So what should you do at meal time?
1) Relax when you sit down to eat. Take a few deep breaths and be thankful for the meal.
2) Count your bites when chewing at first until you are accustomed to thoroughly chewing all food.
3) Chew 30-40 times per bite until the food is a paste.
4) Set your fork down in between bites if you must.
Some foods will take more chewing than others.The idea is to chew until the food is a paste before swallowing.