Three Ways to Avoid Overeating at Meals
With Easter just around the corner, I’m pretty sure many of you are worrying already about the chocolate indulges that are all in store.
It’s way too easy (and common) to indulge on those days.
But here’s the thing – it doesn’t always stop there.
Sometimes we overeat on regular days. Or at regular meals.
All. The. Time.
Here are three tips to avoid overeating at meals.
(#TopTip: turn these into habits and ditch the willpower!)
Tip #1: Start with some water
When your stomach is growling and you smell amazingly delicious food it’s too easy to fill a plate and dive in headfirst. But did you know that it’s possible to sometimes confuse the feeling of thirst with that of hunger? Your stomach may actually be craving a big glass of H20 rather than a feast.
Studies have shown that drinking a glass or two of water before a meal can help reduce the amount of food eaten. And this super-simple tip may even help with weight loss (just sayin’).
Not only will the water start to fill up your stomach before you get to the food, leaving less room for over indulging but drinking enough water has been shown to slightly increase your metabolism.
Tip #2: Try eating “mindfully”
You’ve heard of mindfulness but have you applied that to your eating habits?
This can totally help you avoid overeating as well as having the added bonus of helping your digestion. Just as being mindful when you meditate helps to focus your attention on your breathing and the present moment being mindful when you eat helps to focus your attention on your meal.
Do this by taking smaller bites, eating more slowly, chewing more thoroughly, and savouring every mouthful. Notice and appreciate the smell, taste and texture. Breathe.
This can help prevent overeating because eating slower often means eating less.
When you eat quickly you can easily overeat because it takes about 20 minutes for your brain to register that your stomach is full.
So, take your time, pay attention to your food and enjoy every bite.
Bonus points: Eat at a table (not in front of the TV/Laptop/Mobile screen), use a smaller plate, and put your fork down between bites 😊
Tip #3: Start with salad
You drooling at the thought of that that rich, creamy lasagne.
But don’t start there.
(Don’t worry, you can have some…just after you’ve eaten your salad).
Veggies are a great way to start any meal because they’re full of not only vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and health-promoting phytochemicals but they also have some secret satiety weapons: Fibre and water. Fibre and water are known to help fill you up and make you feel fuller. They’re “satiating”. And these secret weapons are great to have on your side when you’re about to indulge in a large meal.
Have your glass of water, eat mindfully, and start with your salad to help avoid overeating at meals.
Recipe (Water): Tasty (and beautiful) Pre-Meal Water Ideas
If you’re not much of a plain water drinker or need your water to be more appealing to your senses here are five delicious fruit combos to add to your large glass of water:
- Slices of lemon & ginger
- Slices of strawberries & orange
- Slices of apple & a cinnamon stick
- Chopped pineapple & mango
- Blueberries & raspberries
Tip: You can buy a bag (or several bags) of frozen chopped fruit and throw those into your glass, thermos, or water jar in the morning. They’re already washed and cut and will help keep your water colder longer.