Would you win the gold medal in cleaning your plate in record time? That’s not a good thing, especially if you’re constantly the first one done at the table and you want to lose weight. There’s a simple trick that will help you achieve your weight loss goal that won’t leave you feeling deprived and may make your meal more enjoyable. Simply eat slower. If you feel bloated fifteen minutes to a half hour after eating, that will disappear by slowing the spoon to your mouth.
Savor the flavor, enjoy the meal.
When you shovel down food, you miss most of the food’s flavor. Rather than scooping it in so fast you don’t have a chance to taste each morsel. Take a bite, chew it longer and really think about the flavor of each bite. Some people take a great deal of time preparing each bite. They cut a small amount into bite size pieces, chew each bite thoroughly before swallowing and cutting the next small bite. Smaller pieces and chewing your food longer can help you lose weight without any extra effort.
While you savor the flavor, enjoy the company.
If you’re eating with another person, have a conversation. It’s a lost art, since most people text and tweet today instead of talk at the table. Turn off phones during dinner time or simply don’t take calls unless they could potentially be emergencies. People with emergencies normally leave messages. You’ll know it’s an emergency by the caller ID or the message they leave. You’ll be surprised at how shutting off phones or banning calls during meals can lead to better relationships with the people you love.
Make eating a big deal.
- How many meals have you eaten while you’re walking around a room cleaning, taking care of the kids, working on the computer or driving. Meals should be a celebration. Enjoy them. Set out the good china for each meal, put flowers on the table, use the real silverware, not plastic. Treat yourself as you’d treat a guest, even if you’re eating alone. Eating should be a celebration, something you do to nourish and please yourself. Some people who are overweight feel guilty and hide when they eat. Relax, enjoy and you’ll eat slower automatically.
- When you eat slower, you give your brain time to get the message from your stomach that you’re full. It takes about 20 minutes for that to happen. Eating fast doesn’t allow your brain to keep up with your body.
- Just slowing your eating pace and focusing on the flavors and textures of food is called mindful eating. One study found that people who ate mindfully lost 26-pounds over a six-month period and didn’t regain the weight.
- Not only will eating slower make you feel less bloated due to overeating and more satisfied with your meals, it will aid your digestions. Increasing the number of times you chew each bite means less work for the digestive system and increased nutrient absorption.
- When you slow down eating and focus on the food’s flavor, smell, texture and how it satisfies you, you learn to appreciate both food and your body. It builds self-appreciation, which is the foundation of self-care.
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