Buddhist master chooses to 'Savor' food

by Mary MacVean, LATimesBlog, March 29, 2010

Los Angeles, CA (USA) -- Thich "Bear in mind that everything is impermanent, including your extra weight."

So now. Whose book about food might that come from? Buddhist scholar and peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh. That's right, he's written a food book, "Savor: Mindful Eating, Mindful Life," with Lilian Cheung of the Harvard School of Public Health.

I am certainly of the opinion that food is everything -- nourishment, history, culture, family, industry, career. So I guess it makes sense that he also is concerned with food and with what the authors call "a worldwide crisis" of obesity.

So, they write, being truly mindful about what we eat can "help us avoid the external cues that trap us, avoid mindless eating, and focus in on the practices that keep us healthy."

Certainly there's room for another approach to weight loss than the ones that have not worked for so many people. Consider this approach to eating an apple: "Wash it. Dry it. Before taking a bite, pause for a moment. Look at the apple in your palm and ask yourself: 'When I eat an apple, am I really enjoying eating it? Or am I so preoccupied with other thoughts that I miss the delights that the apple offers me?"

Maybe the Slow Food Movement would like to get together with Hanh?

"Savor" also looks at our industrial food supply, the environment, media and other topics related to food.

Photo: Buddhist scholar Thich Nhat Hanh. Credit: Mark Bolster / Los Angeles Times