Monday, October 6, 2014

Mindless Eating !!

Have you ever found yourself standing in front of the fridge looking for something to "snack on" after work or dinner but have no idea why...Don't worry many of us do the same thing. Problem is that it creates a habit of mindless eating that can create problems down the road. BUT did you know that we make more than 200 food choices a day? Do you want a salad or soup? A little or a lot? Water or Soda? the list can go on and on but these choices are not as conscious as we think. If you look at society, we have many "outside" influcences that shape what we choose. Think of the "low fat" or "100 calorie" pack or "250 under" menu. What happened to just eating clean and healthy food? What if I told you that if you really paid attention to the food you are eating and focused on just that, losing weight and making healthy decisions would be a lot easier than you think! I have a few smart choices that you can make each day to help you eat mindfully and really shape the way you see food !!

At home you want to shape your environment for the best mindful eating outcome. Here is what you can do !

DISPLAY THE GOOD STUFF
- when you open your fridge, make sure you have all the vibrant fruits and veggies in plain sight and cut,prepared and ready to eat !!!

HIDE THE BAD STUFF
- one trick I tell everyone is to put the "bad" stuff that shouldn't really be eaten on a regular basis on the bottom shelf or cabinet out of sight and in the back. Not only will you need to consciously bend and get it but now you have to dig it out. Who wants to do all that work for some chips or cookies??

USE SMALLER PLATES
-so what if you can clean polish off dinner without any left overs. Thats ok! But it's a visual thing that will help you shave off a few calories to your meal. If you use a smaller plate you can't fill it as much and you will have better portion control.

COVER TREATS WITH FOIL
- chances are that if you can see it you will be tempted to eat it. Especially those left over brownies from that last birthday party you had. If it's out of sight, it's out of mind. Sure you might remember that those brownies are under that foil but not seeing it out in the open can be the difference in eating one piece vs. out of mindless munching.

Now we can't always eat at home and if you enjoy the occasional dinner out here are a few tips to help you there too !

PAY ATTENTION TO THE WAY IT'S COOKED
-the wording on the menu can be the BIG difference in calories saved for something yummy like dessert. If the high calorie words like buttery, creamed, smothered, alfredo or white sauce, any type of fried, scampi or load are in the description, those meal options will be higher in calories. Try to find the hidden low calorie words like seasoned, light, roasted, fresh, broiled, marinated or reduced to give you a healthier option!!

SCOUT THE MENU BEFORE YOU GO
-nothing is worse than going into the restaurant and not finding something that fits your dietary needs. Some people like myself need to check the menu beforehand to ensure there are clean and healthy gluten free options. It's always a good idea to look at the nutritional content of the food before you go and have a plan so that you can make healthy choices when you are there.

ASK TO SIT BY THE WINDOWS OR FRONT OF THE RESTAURANT
- sitting in the light or in the front of the restaurant may influences the food choices you make. If you are in a well lit area, choosing foods based on feeling may end up saving you calories as apposed to sitting in a dark corner where food can be eaten mindlessly.

I hope some of these tricks will help you make healthier choices, eat mindfully and create healthy habits both at home and when you go out to eat !!!

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