I posted one of my go-to tricks for eating in moderation on Instagram yesterday (you can check it out here if you missed it), but I wanted to share a few more tips today because moderation can be a tough concept to put into practice.
We always hear about the benefits of moderation, especially when it comes to food. To actually achieve moderation in our diet we just have to find the balance between two extremes: over-restriction and overindulgence. Sounds easy enough, right?
Maybe it’s easy to understand, but it’s certainly not easy to implement.
If you’ve ever felt so full that you had to sit back in your chair and undo your belt, you know what I’m talking about.
Eating in moderation is incredibly difficult in a world where food is everywhere, sugar is king, and portion sizes are way larger than they need to be. But the trick to moderation is that it has little to do with the actual food, and everything to do with our habits and ability to be mindful.
Everything that exceeds the bounds of moderation has an unstable foundation. -Seneca Click To Tweet
If you struggle with episodes of emotional eating, binge eating, or yo-yo dieting, here are a few tips for implementing moderation into your daily eating habits:
1. Keep cravings in check.
Once a craving hits, it can be hard to convince yourself not to give in to it.
There are a few tricks we can use to be more mindful, and I put them into an easy-to-learn and easy-to-implement system (#SOS). If you struggle with cravings, this system/cheat-sheet will help: click here to download your free copy.
2. When you eat, JUST EAT.
I like to #GSD and multitask as often as possible, but I try to avoid multitasking while I’m eating. When we eat we should focus on the food in front of us, not the newspaper, or our work, or the TV, etc. I
f we pay more attention to our food, we will be much more likely to practice mindfulness and moderation.
3. Try not to eat alone.
Eating alone means no one will know if you binge.
Being by yourself can be a bit of a death trap if you struggle with emotional eating. Emotional eating is triggered by all sorts of things: stress, loneliness, boredom, fatigue, etc. If we can help it, it’s best not to even put ourselves in a situation where these emotions can take over.
4. Eat the good stuff first.
Start your meals with protein and veggies, then move on to the carbs.
Protein and veggies make us full faster than carbs do. In addition to that, studies show that eating carbs at the end of the meal helps to control blood sugar levels. This means that less insulin is released, less glucose is stored as fat, and we are less likely to gain weight over time.
5. Take time to chew your food.
Eat slowly. Have a drink water. Take small bites. Really taste and enjoy your food. The slower we eat, the more time we give our bodies to digest and realize we’re full.
6. Back away from the rolls.
Once you’re done eating, leave the kitchen. If you’re out to dinner, put a napkin over your plate or push the rolls to the other side of the table.
If there’s food in front of us, we tend to eat it. The key is to realize when we have eaten enough (which is usually before we start to feel full), and stop there.
Moderation takes LOTS of practice because we basically have to re-teach ourselves how to eat. This will take time, but eventually it will become a lifestyle and yo-yo dieting will be in your rear-view mirror.
Be patient and do the best you can. Little changes over time will make a BIG difference, and those changes will last a lifetime.
For more nutrition tools and tips, and other exclusive insights, make sure you sign up for my email list!