Life gets busy. We often travel through our days rushing here and there attempting to get everything on our lists done. Work, family, school, extracurricular activities, they all require our time and attention. Often what we eat throughout the day takes a back seat when it comes to priorities. We grab something on the way out of the door in the morning that is quick. We end up in the drive through for a fast lunch and who has time to plan a healthy dinner? It can be a vicious cycle that leads to unhealthy eating habits and often overeating.
Never let yourself get too hungry
Sounds strange right? But if you think about it, when we get overly hungry, we don’t often make the best food choices. Our instinct to survive can take over, throwing aside our best efforts to eat right. We often eat something convenient, not necessarily healthy. And studies show that we tend to overeat when we are extra hungry. The body and the mind do all they can to avoid going without food. They prompt us to stock-up or overeat when they sense it’s been too long since our last meal. It’s human nature. If we do a better job of listening to our hunger cues and eat meals before we feel ravenous, we can often eat with our health goals in mind.
Snacking the right way
Snacking is essential to keep our metabolism fires burning. Going for long periods without food causes our bodies digestion to slow down. The key to not overeating when snacking is to plan out portion sizes. Take the time to read the labels on snack foods. Choosing options high in protein and low in sugar will help stave off hunger. And just as important is looking at portion sizes. Measure out one serving before you plop in front of the TV. Mindless snacking on the couch with a whole bag of chips can lead to snacking remorse. Take a moment before you snack and you’ll feel better at the end of your show that the snack back isn’t empty.
With all the rushing around, we must keep in mind that eating too quickly can foil our healthy eating attempts. Make your meals a social event whether you’re with family, friends or co-workers. Slow down. Chat with them. Ask questions. Take a moment between bites to put your fork down or to sip your water. Savor your food. Not only will you enjoy your meals more but your brain will have time to let you know when you are full. Food is a wonderful part of life. Make time to enhance your eating habits all while helping your health.