Are You Aware of How and What You Eat?


Restaurant Take Out Boxes

Paying attention to actual hunger is more difficult than one might expect.  Eating habits are a combination of behaviors and rituals that often predate our earliest memories.  Portion control is part of the weight loss tactics that are designed to make people more aware of how and what they eat.

Ever ordered a to-go container at the start of the meal?  If splitting a meal is out of the question, packing half, or even more than half of a restaurant meal into a takeout container can prevent overeating, and has the added benefit of saving money.  Restaurant portions in the US are out of control, and many plates that are served offer quantities of food that can feed even a hearty eater more than once.  While cooking at home is a healthier option, when eating out at a restaurant, splitting a meal with a friend or taking half of it home is better than eating the whole thing out of habit.  Ordering extra forks with dessert and sharing it is a great way to have a taste of something sinful without racking up the calories.

Reducing the size of the plates that one eats on at home is a simple thing to do.  Tricking the eyes can help the whole family pay closer attention to real hunger pangs instead of eating everything on the large dinner plate.  Since for many the “clean the plate” habit is ingrained from childhood, this works on many different and mostly unconscious behaviors that many fight on a daily basis. 

Half a slice of cake has half the calories of a whole slice.  Even when someone cheats on their diet and eats something they shouldn't, portion control can help minimize the damage because the amount of the food is less, and therefore the fat, carbohydrates, salt, and anything else they shouldn't have indulged in. 

 

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