7 EASY TIPS AND TRICKS TO AVOID EATING TOO MUCH January 28, 2018 – Posted in: Lifestyle
Chinese New Year is approaching. Are you worried that you may binge on all those delicious treats, and put on weight? Do you know that eating too much not only make us fat, but also can cause digestive problems?
Very often we eat more than we should because of our mindlessness, but you can use the same principle to subtly influence your behaviour and mindlessly eat less. Our brain is easily fooled by shifts in perspective. It’s also more responsive to external cues like an empty plate, than internal cues like a full stomach. Let’s use the understanding of these influences to tilt them in our favour with these easy tips and tricks to avoid eating too much every time.
- USE SMALLER PLATES
We all love finishing things, don’t we? For some, it’s a habit and for others, it gives us a sense of accomplishment. That’s why it’s so hard to leave things on our plates. Like that last bite we don’t even want, we will still try to finish it. We will automatically stop eating once we see that our plates are clean.
So, do you try leaving a piece of food on your plate? No, we should start with less. I think it’s even better to use smaller plates. We can’t eat what’s not there, right?
- CHEW THOROUGHLY
If you’re one of those who hardly chews your food before swallowing or shovelling in another fork full, chances are you’re eating substantially more at every meal than your thoroughly chewing peers. When you do not chew or are chewing too quickly, large particles of food enter your stomach and intestines, potentially causing digestive problems. So, although you are eating more, you may not be getting all the nutrients.
What to do? Try to slow down and chew until your mouthful of food is liquefied and lost all of its texture, and finish swallowing completely before taking another bite of food. Counting your chews can help develop the habit of chewing more thoroughly, and you will also find yourselves with better digestive health.
- EAT ONLY WHAT YOU CAN SEE
Your stomach can’t count. When you can’t see how much you’re eating you’re more likely to lose track and consume double or even triple the amount you’d eat if you took the time to serve yourself a proper portion. Use a plate, or a bowl, or even a napkin, just make sure you get a good visual of everything you’re going to eat before taking your first bite. Otherwise, your hand will always reach into that potato chip bag, without even realizing it.
- EAT WITHOUT DISTRACTION
If you eat while you work or read or watch TV, or do anything in addition to eating, you’re going to eat more. For some people. It’s the end of a show or movie that gives them the cue that a meal is over. Pay more attention to your food. Live in the moment. Smell your food. Taste it. Be a food critic.
- EAT PROTEIN FOR BREAKFAST
People love to hype breakfast eating as a miracle weight loss cure, but only breakfast high in protein have been proven to suppress appetite and reduce subsequent eating throughout the day. Skip the waffles and head to the omelette station instead.
- EAT 3 MEALS IN A DAY
Though skipping meals can make controlling your appetite more difficult, eating more than three meals a day has not been shown to have any benefit, and may even be worse for appetite control. Eat when you’re supposed to and you shouldn’t need any extra food.
- BE MINDFUL WHEN EATING IN A GROUP
When you are with 1 other person you’ll eat 35% more, with a group of 4 it’s 75% more and with 7 or more it’s 96% more! Be careful next time you’re in a group.
I was inspired to write this blog because my parents ate too much during their recent holiday. They went on a packaged tour 2 weeks ago. Their group was only 6 persons, but they were given a table for 10 persons. So, for every meal, they were served food meant to feed 10 persons. They mindlessly ate what they saw and so they ended up finishing all the food. Guess what happened? They returned to Singapore with an upset stomach and digestive system gone all hay-wire. They are on probiotic supplement now to relieve digestive discomfort.
June Lin Jun Yin is the founder of Juneberries Haven. With over 15 years of working experience in Japanese MNCs, and as the only female head of department leading a team of 30 engineers, she has built up her leadership, negotiation and marketing skills. As a leader, she groomed several male engineers, helping them to advance in their career. Now as a business owner, she wants to help women to become more confident with themselves.
This blog was written to share her own experiences, as well as that of others to help solve some of the problems, which her audience (both men and women) maybe facing. It also serves as a channel for June to rekindle her love for writing.