When you’re trying to lose weight you need a whole arsenal of weapons, tricks, and tips. Losing weight is hard, so why shouldn’t you get all the help you need? You might have heard that your stomach tells your brain when it is full. Problem is, that it’s not a switch that is flicked on that you can react instantaneously to. This means you can carry on eating despite the fact that stomach and brain know you’ve had enough. So how do you get there? How do you stop eating when you’re full?
Through our upbringing and culture, the majority of us have been conditioned from an early age to clear our plates of all food so as not to waste anything. Experts feel that over time we have learned to choose our portions by the size of the plate rather than the size of our hunger. Next time you have dinner try halving the portion that you think you might need. You will be surprised that you will probably end up feeling just as full.
It may seem like a silly thing to do but it really works! When we hold our forks for the entire meal our minds create a motion rhythm of plate to mouth, plate to mouth, plate to mouth. By actually putting your fork down in between bites and allowing your body to digest your food a little bit slower, you may begin to feel fuller quicker, and you will find that you do not have that sudden feeling of over fullness from cramming it all in too fast.
Another interesting way to stop eating when you’re full is to try to eat with the TV off. This idea stems from the fact that, on average, we tend to eat around 14% more food if sat in front of the television. The theory behind this is that we find it harder to practice mindful eating when distracted by the events of television show, almost going onto autopilot and eating more than we need to feel full.
This one is a little more psychological, but has been proven to help. Experts have claimed that making a fist with your non fork hand at the beginning, middle and end of your meal can work as a reminder to keep on track and help you not to overeat. The sentiment comes from the fact that the word ‘no’ has the physical manifestation of a clenched fist, so in doing this you are saying no to overeating.
This is a tip borrowed from the way that Europeans tend to use their cutlery eat their food. Instead of using your fork to scoop up food for your mouth, turn it upside down and practice a more poking, stabbing kind of eating movement. This slows down the rate of food going in to your mouth and also encourages you to focus more on the act and process of eating itself. You also take smaller mouthfuls this way cos less fits on the fork, thereby slowing down the eating process.
Though it may seem and feel like a completely different bodily need, you would be surprised at the amount of people who mistake thirst for hunger. A good way to get around this is to drink a full glass of water approximately 30 minutes before a meal, and in doing this you may discover that you start to be satiated by a much smaller portion of food than you had previously.
In these fast paced times it appears that many people will sit down and hurriedly eat more food than they need to and then go off and do something else. Don’t forget that eating is a sensory pleasure as well as an act of sustenance. Savor each bite and take your time with a meal. You may find that you become full much earlier than you expected.
What it boils down to really, is being more mindful of your eating process. Don’t spend time thinking about and preparing a healthy delicious meal and then undo it my mindless eating. Do you think these tips will help you? Let us in on your weight loss journey.
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