10 Steps To Change Your Eating Behavior
is about choices. Every day we make lots of choices. From what time
we will get up, to what we will wear, where we will go, and what
we will eat. Every meal we make a choice whether to move towards
our goals or away from them. Below are ten steps you can take to
improve the choices you make every time you eat.
Set Yourself Up For Success:
It is much easier to make the right food choices when you have those
foods available to you. Stock your refrigerator and pantry with
healthy, ready to eat foods. Fruits and vegetables are always a
better alternative to processed junk foods, but you can't be expected
to eat them if they are not available when you are hungry.
Make Daily Eating Goals:
Never underestimate the power of setting a goal. Write out your
meal plan for the next day before you go to bed. In the morning
review it and then watch how much easier it is to make the right
choices come mealtime.
Avoid the Hunger-Thirst Trap:
Many times people will experience sensations of hunger when their
body is actually in need of fluid. To avoid these hunger sensations
make sure you stay well hydrated throughout the day. Find a way
to keep water with you wherever you are. Sip on it throughout the
Progress Not Perfection:
Focus on making progress in your eating behaviors. Avoid the perfectionist's
trap of trying to eat perfectly all the time. Everyone "falls
of the wagon" at times. Look for small, attainable steps that
you could take to improve your eating today. Over time these small
steps of progress will add up to a lifestyle change.
Give yourself the opportunity to have a treat every once in a while.
Some people have a treat meal once a week. Others have a small piece
of candy one time each day. Psychologically, the treat serves to
recharge you and makes it easier to keep on track with your eating
over the long term.
Out Of Sight = Out Of Mind:
Move tempting foods out of sight, and avoid places that might be
too tempting to resist. In your refrigerator, move tempting foods
into the bins, or to the lower shelves so that they are not at eye
level. In your pantry do the same. Move those cookies to the lower
shelves, or behind the healthy foods. Many people find it helpful
to freeze tempting foods, because it requires thawing before eating
and can provide just enough delay to avoid impulsive eating.
Not sure what you should be eating? Then get help from a fitness
or nutrition professional. Or review the diets and eating habits
of those who have the body you would like to attain. Often times
just knowing what to eat can make a world of difference in someone's
eating habits. There are many great nutrition articles available
right here on ShapeFit to
get you started.
Take it Slow:
If you struggle with not feeling full while eating, then slow down
the rate at which you eat. It takes 15 minutes for your brain to
get the message you've been fed. Slow down the rate that you eat,
or take a five-minute break half way through your meal. Give the
body time to send the fullness signal up to your brain.
Record Your Nutrition:
Keeping a record of what you are eating allows you to objectively
analyze your eating behaviors. Studies have shown that recording
food alone causes individuals to eat less. The two most effective
factors reported by those who have lost weight and kept it off are
regular exercise and food recording.
If Your Favorite Chair Is In The Kitchen, Get A New Favorite
The kitchen is for eating. If it is not time for you to eat, then
avoid the temptation by going to another part of the house. You
may even want to get outside to reduce temptation even more. If
you tend to watch TV near the kitchen you may want to move to another
TV that is farther away to reduce the temptation to scavenge during
Begin incorporating these ten suggestions into your life as see
if they make it easier to change your eating behaviors.
Dr. Bret L. Emery