In our Summer 2021 issue, we featured an interview with Nevill Houston, the owner of Health and Healing Natural Food Store in Co. Wicklow. Nevill had some great advice to share on how we can absorb the highest nutritional content from our food.
Savour and Nourish
Mindful eating for a healthy life
by Aisling Cronin
When you hear the words ‘healthy eating’, you may immediately assume that this term is a reference to what you eat. But many people don’t realise that healthy eating is not just about what you eat, but how you eat it. According to Nevill Houston – the owner of Health and Healing Natural Food Store, Co. Wicklow – digestion can be greatly improved by taking the time to chew your food thoroughly.
Nevill explains, ‘I always advise people to chew their food well. Make sure it is thoroughly liquified. Otherwise, it forms blobs in your stomach that can’t be digested very well by our stomach enzymes, as these digestive enzymes only work on the topmost layer of the food.’
The secret to increasing the bioavailability of nutrients in the food you eat is simple: savour it. Eat mindfully, don’t rush your meal, and chew your food well. Nevill also recommends that people avoid drinking while eating, because liquid dilutes the stomach acid, making it less efficient in its task of activating the surrounding enzymes.
‘Believe it or not,’ he shares, ‘you will actually be able to extract more nutrition from an unhealthy meal that’s chewed very well, than from a healthy meal – such as a salad – that just gets wolfed down in no time. Mindful eating is key. Drink your food, eat your drink, and preferably not at the same time!’
Find Health and Healing Natural Food Store on Facebook.