Our bodies are equipped with a highly refined guidance system: the appetite. Dietary whims and cravings are normally a function of a desire. Learn to separate “correct” information of a need for food, from the “disrupting” desire for food cravings. For example, an aromatic, attractively presented dish stimulates the senses and there is likelihood of overindulgence with it. Enjoy your food, but learn to stop when you’ve eaten enough. Re-educate your appetite so that you are in control of it. The easiest way to distinguish between craving and appetite is to wait a while before you eat. Give it 20 minutes, if you are still hungry your body needs the food, if it is only a craving the urge to eat passes.
First of all, focus your attention on what you can have rather than on what you can’t. Instead of saying: “ I mustn’t eat jam”, say to yourself, “I can enjoy fresh fruits of the season.” If you want to shed surplus pounds, you really need to change your mindset and take another look at your eating habits. Think of innovative ways to enjoy food without adding extra calories. Enjoy experimenting with different flavors, vegetables, spices, herbs, fruits, seeds and nuts. Be creative! Discover new ways of cooking and experiment with different flavors, so that tasty eating is always a pleasure.
The surest way of sticking to your food plan or diet is to buy just what you need and nothing extra. Also, make a list of your requirements, so that you are better organized when you shop for food. If you are likely to be tempted by the goodies available, make sure you eat before you go to the supermarket. Filling your trolley with indulgences is more likely to happen on an empty stomach.
If you eat while watching television, chances are that you won’t be disciplined about the foods that you consume; the mind gets distracted and is not focused on eating right. It is best to eat on the dining table or at the kitchen table where you bite slowly, savoring your meals. This discipline goes a long way because you are then aware of what you eat and how much you eat.
Exercising control over the quantity of food consumed is a discipline of the mind. Serve yourself small portions of food; you can always fill more later on. Get out of the habit of serving large portions and then overeating. Also, resist the compulsion to “clean the entire dish”. If you are worried about wasting food, distribute the leftovers or refrigerate it for the next day.
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