Yoga and the underpinning philosophy is more than an elaborate stretching routine: it is a practice. Whether you are stretching, meditating or eating the way of the yogi is to consciously be in the moment and not succumb to the push/pull of whims. This attitude can extend from the practice on the mat and personal eating habits to encompass an approach when moving through the world.

Convenience food and takeaway foods offer high energy, salt and saturated fat which can increase your risk of health risks like high blood pressure, and obesity. There is a dissonance to stuffing your gob with burgers in your fair trade yoga wear so instead of deprivation or fundamentalism conscious eating is about savouring the moment and choosing wisely for the short and long term.

CHOICE – Make healthy eating even easier by optimizing your choices

  • Choose a restaurant or takeaway establishment that you know has healthy options.

  • Look for vegetable-based meals and swap out chips or unhealthy sides with salads.

  • Opt for lean protein option such as lean meats, poultry and fish.  

  • If you are vegan/vegetarian, choose plant-based sources of protein such as legumes, lentils, beans and tofu.

PORTIONS – Control your serve size

  • Choose the most appropriate size of meal such as a small entrée and one main meal instead of a three course meal.

  • If you are ordering takeaway foods which are high in saturated fat and salt such as deep fried chicken, chips, fatty meats and cheese, choose the smallest portion available.

  • Skip the offer to upsize a meal as this can lead to excess calories.

  • Omit extras such as fries, soft drinks and dessert options which are often calorie-dense and low in nutrients.

  • Avoid buffet-style restaurants and “all-you-can-eat” style dining which encourage you to overeat and increase your portions.  

  • A healthy plate consists of ½ a plate of vegetables, ¼ of protein and ¼ of grain/cereals.

  • Ask for dressings, gravies and sauces on the side to control the serving.

COOKING METHODS – Know your cooking methods

  • Base your choice of meal on the cooking method used to prepare the dish and if you don’t know ask the restaurant.

  • Check the type of oil your food is cooked in and opt for healthier oils including olive, canola, sunflower or soybean oil.

  • Choose steamed or grilled foods versus fried, batter or crumbed which are usually higher in fat and salt.

  • Remove the skin and visible fat from cuts of meat to reduce the fat content of your meal.

ENJOY EATING OUT – Eat mindfully

  • Eat slowly and rest between each mouthful.

  • Pay attention to your hunger and satiety signals and stop eating when you feel full.

how to eat well and be social

Food is more than sustenance, it’s a shared cultural and social ritual which speaks to connection and nurture.

Conscious eating is a way to participate in all kinds of food experiences without focusing on deprivation but instead savouring the moment without chasing it.


[1] Dietitians Association of Australia. Fast Food and Takeaway [internet] [cited 2016 Jul 2016]. 
Available from

[2] Dietitians Association of Australia. What Takeaway Foods are Healthy? [internet] [cited 2016 Jul 2016]. Available from

[3] Queensland Government. Nutritional Education Materials Online. Weight Control Resources [Internet] Queensland Health; 2015. [cited 2016 August 3] Available from: