Maimonides (a.k.a: Harambam, or Rabbi Mosheh Ben Maimon), who was a well-known medieval physician and a philosopher, gave some useful (and common sense) pieces of advice about dieting:

  1. Eat according to the stomach and not according to the eye.

  2. Eat until you are 75% full instead of 100% full (= cannot eat another bite).

Now, I've lately thought of a dieting advice of my own that seems like Maimonides would have said, but am not sure this is the case:

  1. Don't eat in haste. Eat in front of a table, well seated and concentrate on the food. Don't take it to the computer to eat next to it while doing something else.

My question is - did Maimonides indeed said it as well?

P.S: I was told that Muhammad (= the Muslim prophet) had originally given similar advice before Maimonides, and it may predate even Muhammad, but in this case I am interested in what Harambam said.

  • BTW In English you would write "The Rambam", not "Harambam". – Ariel Mar 17 '13 at 19:51
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    We can be reasonably certain he never said the part about the computer. – Seth J Mar 18 '13 at 4:51

Rambam MT Hilchot De'ot 4:3:

One should always eat while seated or reclining on his left side. He should not walk about, ride, exert himself, subject his body to startling influence, nor take a stroll until the food has been digested in his intestines. Anyone who takes a stroll or exerts himself after eating brings serious and harmful illnesses upon himself.

Unsurprisingly, he makes no mention of not sitting in front of a computer :)

But not all of his advice holds today. E.g., he also recommends very little water and no fruit.

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  • @ShlomiFish feel free to accept the answer if you find it answered your question – Charles Koppelman Mar 19 '13 at 14:05
  • @ShlomiFish also, you're welcome! – Charles Koppelman Mar 19 '13 at 14:35

Much of the Rambam's advice on healthy eating is in his Mishna Torah (Hilchot De'os Chapter 4). You can read a translation of the chapter to English here.

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    Does he discuss the rule in question? – Double AA Mar 18 '13 at 2:14

Much of the Rambam's advice, predates the Rambam back to the Gemarra, Geonim and other Rishonim. Rabbi Raphael Yedidya Abulafia listed them and their earlier sources in the second edition of his siddur, unfortunately it is not online.

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    Does he discuss the rule in question? – Double AA Mar 18 '13 at 2:14
  • Yes he does. Along with bringing other sources for it as well. – Rabbi Michael Tzadok Mar 18 '13 at 4:58

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