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How to Eat Less Without Feeling Deprived
Tip # 7
The Folly of Mindless Eating.
Most of us are guilty of it in some way. Munching on chips right out of the bag during a good movie is a perfect example of mindless eating. Another example is automatically reaching for comfort food during periods of stress or sadness.
Mindless eating has become enough of a concern that there are studies and books on this topic. How can we thwart this fattening tendency by eating less and not feeling deprived? Listed are 12 tips that really work:
1. Paint your kitchen and dining area in happy, warm, light tones instead of sad, dreary, dark tones. Believe it or not, if you are eating in a "happy" colored surrounding, you are prone to eat quicker and less amounts. The opposite happens when you eat in "sad" colored surroundings.
2. Smaller plates and smaller serving spoons = smaller portions. You will eat less without even noticing. Seriousy, it's an automatic, psycological thing.
3. Do NOT eat while atching TV. If you simply must have munchies during a movie, place a portion on a plate and leave the bag of chips in the kitchen (or any other food).
4. When you feel sad or stressed, get into the habit of taking a walk, reading or doing some stretches. If you are creative, make a craft, paint or sketch. Basically, do something that is NON-food related. It may take a bit of time to get into this habit, but once its ingrained, it will stick and you will be less likely to head for the ice cream at the first sign of trouble. Check out the Amazon book I have listed: 50 Ways to Soothe Yourself Without Food.
5. Only eat things that you really like or crave. Don't eat a side dish simply because it's there and available. Be very selective and choose carefully.
6. Eat in front of a mirror and watch yourself. I once overheard someone say that she would eat naked in front of a mirror- that would make most of us not eat at all! Just kidding. Seriously, when you watch yourself eat, you tend to eat less.
7. Eat an apple about an hour before a meal. This will help you feel satisfied and eat less. If you don't have apples in the house, substitute with a full glass of water.
8. Eat slowly. Chewing your food thoroughly and really savoring the flavor will fill you up faster and make you eat less.
9. Always eat salad and vegetables FIRST and then eat your meat and side dishes. This will help prevent reaching for second helpings of the fattening stuff.
10. Feel the heat. Going outside on a hot day and really feeling the heat will naturally suppress your appetite. It will make you thirsty, however. Be sure to reach for water or natural fruit juice and NOT softdrinks!
11. Eat more soup (the healthy kind, not the creamy bisques). A great big bowl of homemade, low-fat soup full of vegetables is not only very delicious, it's also really filling due to all the broth and cooked veggies.
12. Brush, floss and use mouthwash a few minutes after you eat a meal. Fresh, clean teeth may deter you from snacking afterward.
Remember: Your eating habits should come naturally, effortlessly. You should not feel as if you are on a "diet" because if you do, you will automatically feel deprived.
If you have any other suggestions, please leave a comment. Thank you for reading!