The Mindful Eating Class is designed to help people alter their behavior and improve their relationship to food, eating and their bodies. With mindfulness as the foundation, the class will provide participants with the tools, understanding and practices to alter unhealthy behavior, thoughts, and habits that are at the root of mindless over-eating, binge eating, and body dissatisfaction.
The goal of the course is to assist participants in developing long-term, sustainable practices that support a healthful approach to eating and food-related thoughts and behavior. The practices taught in the class are designed to enable a more peaceful relationship with food, eating and one’s body by disrupting the vicious cycles that chronic dieting and binge eating tend to perpetuate.
Because the class is interactive and experiential, it is essential that participants be “fully present” for class. Therefore, a computer or other personal device that has both audio and video capability is necessary and students should plan to attend all 8 classes.
You can expect to be both challenged and supported in this class as you endeavor to make healthy, sustainable changes.
Topics we will explore:
- Diet culture: why restrictive diets are counter-productive.
- The causes and conditions that give rise to the development of disordered eating and food/body struggles.
- The Health at Every Size (H.A.E.S.)® model of health.
- How emotional triggers contribute to mindless/emotional eating.
- How Self Compassion practices are key in altering unhealthy behaviors.
- Removing barriers to exercise and shifting to movement that is joyful.
- The interconnection of earth, living beings and cultural practices and the impact of food choices on these systems.
You will learn how to:
- Practice formal and informal methods of mindfulness.
- Incorporate mindful eating into your daily life.
- Combat Internalized body/weight shaming and self-criticism.
- Disrupt the vicious cycles of restrictive dieting and over-indulgence.
- Work with difficult emotions and “surf the waves” of craving.
- Use Inner and Outer Wisdom to build healthy habits.
- Navigate medical appointments and unsolicited diet advice.
- Begin to make peace with the body you were born with.
Mindfulness Eating Class FAQs
Who will benefit from taking the Mindful Eating Class?
- People interested in developing a healthier approach to food and eating.
- People who want to break free of yo-yo dieting, diet mentality and body dissatisfaction.
- People who want to learn mindfulness and a more sustainable approach to food, eating and health management.
- People who have taken the MBSR class and want to apply the practices to food, eating and body image.
What is the class format?
The class follows a structured format that includes:
- Educational components (e.g. concrete information about food, myths about restrictive diets, weight loss and health).
- Experiential components (e.g. guided meditation, mindful eating practices, gentle movement).
- Time for participants to ask questions and share experiences in small groups (“Break out rooms” on Zoom).
Do I need prior experience with meditation?
No prior experience with mindfulness practices/meditation is necessary.
I’ve tried to meditate and cannot stop my thoughts. Does this mean I will not be able to benefit from the class?
Humans are not designed to be able to stop their thoughts. In meditation, we learn how to notice the thoughts that invariably arise and then practice letting them go rather than try to stop them from happening.
Anyone can learn how to do this.
Will I lose weight if I take this class?
Weight loss is not the goal of the Mindful Eating Class. People may or may not lose weight because of taking this class. The goal of the class is to help participants to break free of habits that contribute to mindless eating and the related sequelae that contribute to food and body image difficulties.
Should people with eating disorders take the class?
If you have an active eating disorder, please request an individual conversation with Barbara Maille, LCSW when you register to determine if the class is appropriate for you at this time. The class is not a substitute for professional eating disorder treatment but may be augmentative to individual therapy (depending on the nature of the eating disorder and where you are with regard to recovery).
How long is the class?
The class will meet for 2 hours for a total of 8 consecutive weeks. A 9th class may be added as a meal sharing “potluck” if/when the class is able to resume in-person meeting and if enough participants are available and interested. This is a wonderful way to celebrate the completion of the class as well as an opportunity to employ the practices learned in the class.
Can I receive Academic or Continuing Education Credit for this course?
The class is intended for personal development. No academic or professional CEs are available.
Fall 2023 Class starts September 18, 2023
Location: Live online via Zoom
Your instructor has requested that video monitors be present for the entire class.
Date: September 18- November 6, 2023
Time: 4:30 p.m. 6:30 p.m.
Eastern Standard Time
Register Online then pay here: Pay Online via UVA EPay
Please pay more, if you can, to help support those less able to pay. Thank you.
$225 – reduced rate
$325 – standard rate
$425 – supporting rate
Instructor: Barbara Maille