Losing weight can be challegening especially when we fail to control our portions. Here are some reasons we don’t control our portions:
- Lack of knowledge. You never learned proper serving size
- Habit or cultural, it ‘s just how you grew up eating.
- Lack of self-control.
- We live in a society where meals are super-sized.
- Emotional eating. When we are stressed we tend to reach for food for comfort, as a result we have the tendency to overeat.
Here are some tips you can follow to help you control your portions:
1. Drink water prior to your meal. Drinking more water will help you fill full without the added calories. Have a glass or two of water before your meal.
2. Use a smaller plate. You are more likely to overeat when you use a large plate, thus using a smaller plate at the onset will limit the amount you take in. Keep in mind this strategy only works if you resist the temptation to reach for seconds.
3. Be mindful. Always remember that you have a goal whether it be to lose weight or you’ve been successful at losing the weight and now you want to maintain. You don’t want to sabotage all of your hard work. If you feel stress go for a walk or mediate. When you are stressed you are likely not hungry. And when you are stressed you are more likely to overeat or more likely to eat something that is not healthy.
4. Fill up on fiber rich foods. High fiber foods will give you a sense of satiety because they slow down the digestive process. Also high fiber foods will help you will fuller for longer periods of time thus you are less likely to eat too soon. So fill your plate with fruits and vegetables. Avoid high-calorie processed foods that tend to be low in fiber.
5. If you are dining out ask for a doggy bag as soon your meal comes to the table. Immediately split your meal in half and save it for lunch the next day.
6. Avoid eating at fast food restaurants where the foods are often super-sized. But if you do go to a fast food restaurant choose from the kids menu.
7. Don’t go too long without eating. Eat smaller meals throughout the day which will help keep your blood sugar levels from dropping between meals. Munch on healthy snacks such as nuts or fruits. Avoid processed foods that are high in sugar and preservatives.
8. Slow down when eating. Life is busy but you need to slow down and enjoy your meal. When you eat too quickly you have a tendency to overeat.
Takeaway point as always is to make changes that you can live with in the long term. It’s a lifestyle not a quick fix.
Look out for next week’s Wellness Wednesday post where I will discuss how to measure your portions.
by Marjorie Binette, MD