Three Ways to Overcome Overeating at Meals
We all do it. Sometimes the amazing aroma and delicious flavors get the best of us. Especially if we're a bit on the hungry (or hangry) side.
I'm talking about overeating at meals.
This can have a big impact on our weight, energy levels, and overall health and digestive function. Of course, our body needs food to fuel it and we often (usually) eat amazingly healthy foods.
But we may still overeat. In this post, I'm going to give you three solid tips for preventing that from happening. Seriously! If you can make these three things a regular habit and part of your daily routine you've got one up on the overeating cravings.
Sometimes those holiday feasts are just amazing.
And it's not just the abundance of delicious food but also the people, the decorations, and the ambiance.
It is way too easy (and common) to indulge on those days.
But it doesn't always stop there.
Sometimes we overeat on regular days. Or at regular meals. Or All. The. Time.
Here are three tips to avoid overeating at meals.
(Psst, turn these into habits and ditch the willpower!)
When your stomach is growling and you smell amazingly delicious food it's too easy to fill a plate (or grab some samples with your bare hands) and dive into the food.
But did you know that it's possible to sometimes confuse the feeling of thirst with that of hunger? Your stomach may actually be craving a big glass of water rather than a feast.
Some studies have shown that drinking a glass or two of water at 30-60 minutes before a meal can help reduce the amount of food eaten & it super hydrates your body (most of us are walking around chronically dehydrated). And this super-simple tip may even help with weight loss (...just sayin').
Not only will the water start to fill up your stomach before you get to the social gathering, leaving less room for the feast but drinking enough water has been shown to slightly increase your metabolism.
Tip #2: Try Eating “Mindfully”
You've heard of mindfulness but have you applied that to your eating habits?
This can totally help you avoid overeating as well as having the added bonus of helping your digestion.
Just as being mindful when you meditate helps to focus your attention on your breathing and the present moment being mindful when you eat helps to focus your attention on your meal.
Do this by taking smaller bites, eating more slowly, chewing more thoroughly, and savoring every mouthful. Notice and appreciate the smell, taste, and texture. Breathe.
This can help prevent overeating because eating slower often means eating less.
When you eat quickly you can easily overeat because it takes about 20 minutes for your brain to know that your stomach is full.
So take your time, pay attention to your food and enjoy every bite.
Bonus points: Eat at a table (not in front of the screen), off of a small plate, and put your fork down between bites.
Tip #3: Start with the Salad or Veggies
You may be yearning for that rich, creamy main dish.
But don't start there.
(Don't worry, you can have some...just after you've eaten your salad or veggies).
Veggies are a great way to start any meal because they're full of not only vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and health-promoting phytochemicals but they also have some secret satiety weapons: fiber and water.
Fiber and water are known to help fill you up and make you feel fuller. They're “satiating”.
And these secret weapons are great to have on your side when you're about to indulge in a large meal.
Recipe (Water): Tasty (and beautiful) Pre-Meal Water Ideas
If you're not much of a plain water drinker or need your water to be more appealing to your senses here are five delicious (and beautiful looking) fruit combos to add to your large glass of water:
Tip: You can buy a bag (or several bags) of frozen chopped fruit and throw those into your cup, thermos, or uber-cool mason jar in the morning. They're already washed, cut and ready to use with ease. In the cooler months of winter and fall add the fruit to warm or hot water & in the water seasons of spring and summer add the fruit to warm or room temperature water (cold food is harder for the body to digest as it slows down the digestive process).
With Sparkles for Health & Healing,
Paula Yolles, FoodTastic Health Digestive Wellness Expert
Great job being an action taker to shift your health!!
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