Friday, June 19, 2015

Mind Tricks for Healthy Eating

All of us struggle from time to time with making healthy food choices. Here are a few tricks I use to help me eat moderately.

When you are preparing or eating a meal, promise yourself that you will eat healthy for Just This Meal. It can be overwhelming to think about sticking to your food plan for the entire day, and especially for the entire week. But most of us can adhere to healthy eating for one meal. Once you have success with that meal, often you will be encouraged to continue through to the next. Always give yourself a "high five" for choosing healthy food at a meal.

Another strategy for success can be delayed gratification. After eating your healthy meal with moderate portions, you might still feel hungry. Promise yourself that you will eat more if you are still hungry in 30 minutes.  Usually, at this point, your body will have had time to process the satiety signals and you will feel satisfied. If I have been exercising a lot, sometimes I will still be hungry after the 30 minutes. Then I will have a second small meal.

Many of us like to have something sweet at the end of a meal. A giant bowl of ice cream or a hunk of cake can fill that need but what other options do we have? I mentioned before in my previous blog on Talking Yourself Out of Temptation that the first few bites of any food are the most satisfying. Given that logic, we only need something small to give us that sweet satisfaction. A date is very sweet as is a handful of raisins. Any dried fruit is super concentrated and sweet. A lollipop or a peppermint or a chocolate kiss all give that sweetness without a calorie binge. My daughter makes sweet protein balls with peanut butter & dried fruit. I like non-fat plain yogurt with a drizzle of honey. A sliced banana and a tablespoon of peanut butter is sweet & filling. Being prepared with a sweet option in mind can help you say NO to the ice cream & cake and still enjoy that sweet taste at the end of a meal.

Eat Thoughtfully, Stay Active & Enjoy Your Food

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