Outsmart your brain with these 3 tips on how to stop overeating at meals
How do you stop overeating at meals when life celebrations and holiday feasts are amazing?
And it’s not just the abundance of delicious food but also the people, the decorations, and the ambiance that may distract us from focusing on the amount of what we are consuming.
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!)
If you have worked with me you know how I feel about relying on straight willpower. It doesn’t work. WILLPOWER has this superhero aura around it, that by a magical force it will be there time and time again. Well, it doesn’t. Mel Robbins says it best:
“Our willpower is not at some constant level all day, waiting around for us to use it. Nope, it gets weaker with each decision we make. This is why, after resisting chocolate all day, you can’t help but have that dessert at night.”
And there’s research backing this. Roy Baumeister, a prominent psychologist, has researched the phenomenon of decision fatigue, which is the idea that our willpower decreases with each decision.
Decision fatigue it what leads to analysis paralysis. When your brain is low on mental energy, it’s really hard to make good decisions on the things that matter–like your goals.
This research has inspired some of the most visionary people. It’s why Steve Jobs wore the same outfit every day, a black turtleneck, blue jeans, and white sneakers. By conserving his mental energy by taking away smaller decisions, it enabled him to focus his energy on big decisions–the ones that mattered. ”
OK back to overeating and outsmarting our brain.
TIP #1: START WITH SOME WATER
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 before a meal can help reduce the amount of food eaten, 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 buffet, 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 also helps to focus your attention on your meal.
Do this by taking smaller bites, eating more slowly, chewing more thoroughly, and savouring 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
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). I’m not totally nuts!
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.
About the Author
Monika Tupholme (BSc. in Biochemistry, CPT, and FNC) is a former professional volleyball player. She is now a Performance Strategist|Educator who helps active people reignite their metabolism so they can lose weight, re-energize, curve joint pain and get their MOJO back. You can follow Monika on social media: Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/monika_tupholme/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mojomoni/?pnref=lhc Visit her website: […]Read Bio Read Posts