Don’t Let Your Eyes Be Bigger Than Your Stomach
If your mother told you that when you were a kid, she was on to something. One of the tricky parts of maintaining your ideal weight is your perception of how much food is too much, too little, and just right.
Here is an example. A family member recently confided in me that at the end of her work day, when she was ‘too busy’ to eat, she comes home and thinks that she needs three burritos to make up for her loss. A friend, last night at a restaurant, kept ordering more food. In his own words, he was afraid? that it wouldn?t be enough. He confessed later that he had ordered too much.
Here are three tips to get a good sense of how much food to eat to maintain your health and to promote natural weight loss without dieting.
Pay attention to what you imagine before you eat. When slender people say that they eat whatever they want, it is because their perception of a satisfying meal is usually smaller in volume that someone else who pictures and then devours an enormous quantity of food. If you picture yourself stuffing yourself, you probably will. If you picture yourself enjoying a meal for nourishment, you will naturally select a smaller, more reasonable quantity of food.
Pay attention to your emotions. If you are reading this, you are probably not at risk to starving. It’s not realistic. Therefore, if you are concerned that there won’t be enough food, catch yourself before you eat to make up for a fear of insufficiency. At a restaurant recently, my husband and I were going to share some appetizers, a salad, and a side of spinach with garlic. I pictured an abundance of food. He pictured it not being enough. It turned out to be plenty and his fear was unrealized.
Go gradually through a meal. You can always order or select more if you are still hungry at the end of a meal. If your eyes are bigger than your stomach, you will put a huge portion in front of you at the beginning. It might be better to start off with a couple of small plates, check in with your body, find out if you need more, or discover, perhaps, that you were satisfied with less than you thought you would need. Then your body tells you that you are full and you are paying attention.
Eating to nourish your body will empower you to make better, more health-promoting choices. Take really good care of your body, and your body will love you back.
With love and encouragement,
Board Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach
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