Overeating is a common problem.
It’s obvious that as obesity rates climb for both adults and children, we’re clearly over-consuming as a whole. The urge to overeat is always there. Buffets, two-for-ones, up-sizing and all-you-can-eat dining experiences are increasingly popular.
And particularly at this time of year when events like christmas parties, family gatherings and weddings are on, it’s important to become aware, so you’re prepared in those tempting situations.
Overeating happens when we’re simply NOT present.
Follow these tips and you might see a difference in your usual habits…
Tips on Stopping the Urge to Overeat :
– Become present around eating time. This means putting down your phone or laptop (guilty!), turning off the TV, looking at your meal and really savouring each bite. Enjoy the flavours, textures and tastes. When you really focus on the task at hand – being eating – it’ll slow you down and your brain will register that it is indeed eating (therefore registering when you’ve had enough).
– Slow down. It seems obvious, but if you grew up in a large family (like myself) you’ll know the tactic of fiercely guarding your plate and eating fast to make sure no one else could steal the last bite. Slowing down means really chewing your food, putting your fork down between mouthfuls and actually enjoying the tastes.
– Forget the scarcity – food is abundant. We are very fortunate, we live in a part of the world where food is not running out – there is always MORE. This idea helps us to realize that each meal can be eaten slowly, with enjoyment and gratitude.
– Prone to Hanger*? (*hunger causing anger) To prevent an onset of hanger and overeating, always make sure you have small, easy snacks on hand – raw nuts, bliss balls, trail mix, fruit…for more snack options read this.
– Drink plenty of WATER between meals. You hear it all the time, but it’s too true- drink more water than you think you need. Even slight dehydration will lead to excess hunger. Drink more water, herbal teas, vegetable juices, coconut water and water-filled fruits & veggies like cucumber and watermelon.
– Avoid any caffeine after midday. This will prevent the drop in blood sugar levels which can lead to cravings, allowing you to make clearer choices about what your body needs. Not to mention helping with the better sleep you’ll get in the evenings. If you need something similar to coffee (without caffeine) try dandelion tea.
– Get enough sleep. When we’re tired the hormone that signals to the brain that we’re full (leptin) is not around..he’s too tired. So we often end up overeating and not even being aware of it. Getting plenty of rest will ensure you have more control over your eating habits and the hormones that regulate your appetite.
– Always add greens. If you’re going out for a not-so-healthy or heavy meal, get in the habit of ordering a side of salad or fresh vegetables. Making sure you order vegetables with your meals is the ideal filler and will ensure you don’t overdo it on the pizza or potatoes. (Bonus – eating raw greens / vegetables before a heavy meal helps to stimulate your digestive enzymes and cleanse your pallet.)
– Take digestive enzymes. Particularly if you know your digestion is slow and you’ll be eating a heavier meal. These can be taken just 10 mins before your meal or right with it to give your digestive system a little assistance with the chaos that’s about to begin.
If you did overeat, don’t panic and don’t feel guilty – just take note of how you feel and take little actions to relieve the discomfort. Gentle movement and fluids will help.
It’s all about balance, so rather than depriving yourself all of the time, allow yourself a little bit of freedom to enjoy your favourites now and then. You’ll find you savour every bite.
Life’s too short to beat yourself up over a naughty treat or an overly full belly, so whatever you do, be content and know that it’s what you do 80% of the time that will give you your optimum health.
If you know anyone who’d benefit from this info, please share the love…spreading the word helps others out and that’s what we want!
**Disclaimer: This is in no way medical advice, but rather advice based on my own personal experiences and thorough research. Please do your own research and come to your own conclusions that feel right by you.