Obesity is on the rise in recent decades because more and more people tend to move less and eat more. With the advent of technology, some people prefer to stay at home and watch TV than go outside and spend time with friends and neighbors. The comforts of this sedentary lifestyle also prevent people from cooking their own food. Instead of walking into their kitchen and cook their own tasty meal, they’d rather call and have food delivered right to their doorstep. Eating out is also becoming popular.
This lifestyle shift has produced more obese people than fit ones. And if you want to get fit, you need to do things differently from what most people do. Because weight gain comes mainly from your eating habits, this is the main thing you need to put more focus on. This doesn’t mean you need to follow a strict diet. Though that could be effective, doing that would be too much for yourself and you might be faced with some inner resistance; you just have to start simple. Do simple tricks that could trick your brain to eat less. But of course, your intention would be on being mindful of what you eat. The following ways may work:
1. Pay attention to the portion of food on your plate
According to a study, the portion of food for a single serving has increased in recent years. This is because restaurants and food chain stores started to offer food in bigger portions, larger drinks, larger pizza slices, larger bagels, larger fries, and many more. Buffet-style restaurants is also on the rise. With all these extras, people start to forget what their bodies essentially need. They just gobble up what’s in front of them. Next time you’re in a restaurant, watch what’s on your plate and don’t be tricked into eating everything you’re being served with. If possible, eat only half portion of a serving.
2. Check the nutrition facts
Foods sold in the market are being regulated to display the nutritional value you can get from the package. Before buying one, check if it’s not packed with empty calories or loaded with salt and sugar, or any other ingredients which could not support you to maintain a healthy weight. When eating in restaurants, check the calorie content for each menu. Always bear in mind that you’re only eating there for one meal, which means you should not consume all the calories recommended for a day in that one meal. Fast foods usually serve foods with high calorie content. To be sure you’re eating healthy, order vegetable servings that are packed with nutritional value.
3. Be mindful of where you eat
Correct lighting plays a big part in your eating habits. One study shows that people who eat in a darker room tend to consume more calories than people who eat in a well-lit place. When eating out, choose a restaurant with ample lighting to be more conscious of what you put into your mouth. Or when in a romantic dinner, if candle lit is inevitable, try to be mindful of what you eat.
4. Don’t be fooled by packaging
Some snacks are offered in single or individual servings. However, one serving can be packed in a larger size. This could mean only one thing – you’ll be eating more than one serving if you’ll eat everything inside the package. There is a way you can eat a healthy snack in the right portion, that is by preparing your own snacks. Bring snacks to your office or workplace. That way, you’re much in control of your own eating habits.
5. Plan your own meals
Planning your own meals is another great way of being in control of how much you eat and what you eat. You can search online for the right amount of servings a particular portion of food offers. Cooking your own food gives you the freedom to include in your meals your choice of food sources, like protein, healthy fats, omega 3s, and other foods rich in nutritional value. This may take some effort and time, but it’ll be all worth it when it comes to not eating more than what you need and maintaining a healthy weight.
6. Eat more proteins before going to a party
A party means lots of foods and drinks. It would be hard for you to say no when you’re in front of mouth-watering and delicious meals. We’re wired to be visual beings. Whatever looks or smells enticing is hard to ignore, especially when other people are gorging excitedly on their meals. You don’t need to get out of the place in order to stick to your healthy eating habits. All you have to do is fill your stomach with proteins before eating a full meal. This can trick your brain into believing you’re already full and will tend to eat less of the high calorie foods in front of you. So before going to a friend’s party, it might be best to gulp on a protein-filled smoothie or high-protein snacks such as protein bars or black bean brownies.
7. Eat the veggies first
Let’s say, you’re invited to a friend’s birthday and you forgot to snacks on high protein foods. There’s still a way you can maintain your healthy eating habits. All you have to do is fill your plate with more veggies and less of some other delicious foods to your liking. Eat all the veggies first. Even if you’ll be eating some of those fatty foods, at least you’ve consumed more of the healthier ones.
8. Choose smaller plates
Yes, whether you may be at home or elsewhere, choosing a small dinner plate is practically right. This is the simplest way to be mindful whether or not you’ve picked the right portion of food. The portion is no longer a question here. You’ll be encouraged to put on your plate your food choices on small amounts. The portion may be small but your plate looks full, and your brain is still happy to think of eating a full meal.