Potato chips are mine. We all crave different foods for different reasons. Perhaps it is hardwired into our minds, the desire for salty or sweet foods, because in actuality our bodies require salt and sugar to maintain life. For some, junk food cravings stem from emotions or even boredom. Anyway you slice it; cravings often lead to mindless, overeating with accompanying guilt.
But you don’t have to beat yourself up over the occasional treat. Instead honor yourself and your appetite without depriving it from an enjoyable eating experience. So rather than restricting that joyful delicious food all together, treating yourself every so often may do the trick. But the key is being mindful and in control. Often times the foods we love are not the most nutritious. So when you do splurge on those foods there are a few tricks to keep calm and in charge.
Tips to avoid over-eating your favorite “occasional” foods:
- Store the food in a place that makes it harder to get. For example, the back of the shelf or the highest shelf in the pantry, in the crisper, or any place where it will be out of sight.
- Never eat from the package. Instead portion out a serving in a bowl or on a plate. Wait 15 minutes after eating and ask yourself: Having a hard time concentrating? Is your stomach growling? If not, then you are not truly hungry.
- Eat slowly. Chewing your food slowly helps slows digestion, improves absorption of nutrients, and gives you time to realize you are full.
- Appreciate the food. Remember why we must to eat; it is a fundamental need of life. Food should nourish us, taste good, and fulfill true hunger.
Be present in the moment, enjoy your food, just don’t overdo it. Bon appetite!
By Liz Schneider