How can the principles of mindfulness and compassion support a transition away from overeating and food addiction? I had the good luck of exploring this topic with Karen Steiner in conversation for the Vegan Family Kitchen Podcast.
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Karen Steiner is a Weight Loss Coach, Food Activist and Meditation Teacher. Professionally, she has Master’s degree in Counseling and Educational Psychology, has trained as a Life Coach through The Co-Active Training Institute and the eCornell Certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies.
After nearly 40 years of contemplative practice and study with teachers Buddhist, Christian, and Jewish she finally learned how to take her mindfulness practice off the cushion and into the kitchen. Through mindful eating Karen discovered that dairy was playing havoc with her body and that she was seriously addicted to a number of foods, including cheese. Giving up dairy and becoming fully vegan was a major game changer. Food cravings disappeared, weight came off, and a life-long depression lifted.
In this conversation, Karen tells me about:
  • The start of her vegetarian journey in 1984 with Diet for a Small Planet
  • The distinction between casual overeating and food addiction
  • Why moderation isn’t useful for everyone and why she has to keep her home “clean”
  • What makes her so angry about the food industry
  • How a trip to New Zealand served as an epiphany that led her to make big changes
  • How she decided to quit cheese and the successes and struggles that ensued
  • Her new way of eating, which includes a lot of vegetables

In December and also in the New Year, Karen will be running her program Breaking the Food Seduction One Mindful Bite at a Time. You can also connect with her by visiting her website and downloading her free e-book Six Strategies for Permanent Weight Loss. I also encourage you to visit Karen’s YouTube channel and read more about her journey in Forks Over Knives magazine.