Guide to help avoid overeating
Self-control is the key to good eating habits. Unfortunately, not everyone is born with the will of steel. Often, we find ourselves either binge-eating or on a diet-spree. None of them is a healthier approach to eating. The truth is that we all are biologically wired to crave sugary, processed foods and eat as much of them as possible. Another truth is that we CAN curb the cravings and halt bad eating habits like overeating. Let’s find out how…
The most important thing about eating healthy is to avoid processed, packed foods that are laced with sugar, trans fat and synthetic flavours. Substitute the junk with wholesome food consisting of fruits, vegetables, healthy nuts and whole grains. A well-balanced diet including fibre-rich and high-protein food may help you stave off hunger and cravings. It also helps in keeping you feeling satiated for long.
Say ‘Yes’ To Breakfast
Breakfast helps kick-start your metabolism. When you wake up, the blood sugar your body needs to make your muscles and brain work their best is usually low. When you skip breakfast, you feel low on energy which is likely to make you overeat later in the day. However, this might not be true for everyone, every time. If you’ve had a heavy dinner, chances are you will not feel the need for breakfast. Listen to the cues from your body and act accordingly.
Stress leads you to emotional eating. If you’re stressed, you don’t digest food properly and your stress hormones slow down metabolism. Chronic stress drives up levels of cortisol which, in turn, increases the levels of the hunger hormone ghrelin that increases appetite. De-stress to stop yourself from overeating. Deep breathing is one way to reduce stress. Taking deep breaths between bites or at the start and end reduces stress and makes you mindful of what you are eating. This helps you eat without going overboard.
Diet, Don’t Deprive
Eating healthy doesn’t require you to deprive yourself of your favourite food. It is about eating properly so that the body gets all the required nutrients and nourishment. When you deprive yourself, it leads to an increase in your food cravings, especially in response to emotions. Eat satisfying amounts of healthier food and indulge in occasional treats to help curb cravings.
Journal The Portion
The best way to stop overeating is to write down what you eat and how much you eat. Ever felt too full or sluggish minutes after meals and wish you had eaten less? Regular journaling keeps you mindful of the food and portion size you consume. It might also help you see patterns between the food you eat and your mood - an excellent way to break mindless eating and other bad habits.
Don’t just gulp down your meals, one morsel after another. Eating too quickly causes you to overeat. Slower, paced eating is associated with increased fullness and decreased hunger. The added advantage is that you will also enjoy the food more when you take the time to savour it.
Stop Skipping Meals
While attempting to lose weight or consume fewer calories, people always make the mistake to skip meals leading to starvation. Studies have demonstrated that eating more frequently throughout the day may decrease hunger and overall food intake. Starving your body by skipping meals invites a lot of health problems like weight gain, binge eating, lower metabolism levels, impairing of mental focus and even an increase in the risk of developing diabetes.
Finally, whenever you crave food, always ask yourself ‘Are you really hungry?’ Eat, if the answer is yes. And stop when you are full.
The most important thing about eating healthy is to avoid processed, packed foods that are laced with sugar, trans fat and synthetic flavours. Substitute the junk with wholesome food consisting of fruits, vegetables, healthy nuts and whole grains.