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Meditation on a full stomach?

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Meditation on a full stomach?
Answer
4/20/18 9:24 PM
Apologies if this question has been asked before, but I've never been able to find an answer that satisfied me. Why is it typically not advised to do meditation after a meal? Does it have something to do with blood flow to your brain being decreased? Or is it perhaps because a full stomach tends to be a grounding influence? 
If it came down to it, shouldn't I go ahead and meditate after a meal anyway, if the other option would be to skip sitting altogether?

Thanks in advance.

RE: Meditation on a full stomach?
Answer
4/20/18 9:35 PM as a reply to Rebecca P.
Hey Rebecca,

I don't know the answer to your question, but I thought I would ask whether you can do some mindfulness of eating?  This may not be possible, depending on your social situation. However, if you can be even a little mindful of eating, that may help to sneak a bit more meditation into your day.

RE: Meditation on a full stomach?
Answer
4/20/18 10:16 PM as a reply to curious.
Hi there curious! Yes I have. I've started eating in my room to practice mindfulness because my mom usually has the tv turned on during mealtimes. I used to scarf down my food in 10 minutes but I've really started to slow down and enjoy it more.

RE: Meditation on a full stomach?
Answer
4/21/18 4:32 AM as a reply to Rebecca P.
Hey Rebecca,

I think its just because when you're on a full stomach the system tends to slow down a bit because of the energy that goes into digestion, so it is harder to be wakeful and attentive. But its not "bad" and so, sure its still ok to do if you want to. I don't know if you've ever been on retreat but in those situations it becomes really clear how a full stomach slows the system down for hours actually and makes meditation more difficult.

When it comes down to it I think it'd be something like "if you can only sit twice a day, try to make sure those sittings aren't after a meal"

RE: Meditation on a full stomach?
Answer
4/21/18 9:10 AM as a reply to Rebecca P.
Meditation on a full stomach is definitely grounding and drops energy as we settle into digestion mode, insulin is released, etc. Whether or not this is good or bad depends on what is going on.

If you are sleepy and your mind is dull, eating will likely make you more sleepy.

If you are restless, irritable, headed too far out, having unstable energetic phenomena, anxious, edgy, having bizarre kundalini phenomena, getting paranoid, getting a bit psychotic, pushing your dharma practice too hard, and having a hard time grounding down, then eating a meal, particularly a heavy one, along with physical exercise and lots of other possible actions designed to stabilize practice, can be very helpful to bring imbalanced energy back into balance.

If you are simply very hungry and lacking energy and an ability to focus due to having had inadequate nutritional intake or having hypoglycemia, then a meal might be reviving.

Thus, I would say the effect of meals on meditation is contextual.