Dining in the Dark & Mindfulness with Meal Makeover Moms

Can you imagine what it would be like to eat a meal blindfolded? Well, call me crazy, but I signed up (along with 34 other dietitians) to dine in the dark. It was a event through the Massachusetts Dietetic Association. The evening began with a mindfulness exercise, which I led. The exercise was followed by a 4 course meal (blind-folded).

But I don’t have to tell you about the event. The Meal Makeover Moms invited me in for an interview to talk about it! Janice (one of the Moms) and I dined together. So enjoy the podcast (episode 139). For about 40 minutes, we have a great time discussing our dining experience, mindfulness and why it’s so important for our health.

Picture Source: Janel Ovrut

Below are some basic principles of mindful eating:
1. Develop an awareness of the positive opportunities of preparing and eating meals guided by your inner wisdom
2. Use all of your senses when eating and exploring your food
3. Acknowledge food preferences (likes and dislikes) without judgement
4. Become aware of physical cues of hunger and fullness to guide when to start and stop eating

If you are interested in learning more about mindful eating, I highly recommend two books. First is “Mindful Eating” by Jan Chozen Bays. The second is “Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat” by Michelle May.


  1. I LOVE this idea Marci! I heard about a couple of restaurants that do this so I was just saying that I want to plan a dinner like this during our Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Retreat in August. Thanks for your post! Michelle

  2. Thanks for your comment Michelle! If you do dine in the dark at the retreat, tweet about it. 🙂 I’d love to hear your thoughts! I was astounded at how much is actually lost when you don’t have the visual input. So grateful to have all of my senses intact!

  3. Marci, what did you do for the mindfulness exercise you mentioned above? The whole retreat will explore various mindfulness experiences so I am collecting ideas. Michelle

  4. I got the exercise from Jan’s book “Mindful Eating.” It’s called the 7 hungers and I use it with my clients a lot! You take a neutral piece of food (like a cracker or craisin) and evaluate your level of hunger on a scale from 1-10. The 7 hungers you evaluate

    are eye, nose, mouth, stomach, mind, heart, and cellular. It’s awesome!

  5. Great post! I’ve often wondered what would happen if I ate with my eyes closed. Very interesting idea… I think we often lose most mindfulness in our lives, and it’s great to develop the practice again.

  6. Thanks Karolina! I totally agree, it’s easy to get distracted with so much busyness in our lives. Taking time to stop, slow down, and pay attention takes intentional effort…and can even be a little fun. 🙂

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