1: Stop dieting
Because 95% of diets don’t work! If you have ever found a 5%er then ignore me, but I am going to take a punt that you haven’t, not one that has worked permanently, or else you probably wouldn’t be on a diet now or just off one.
2: Don’t restrict intake by more than 20%
When we over restrict our eating we can deplete our resources and feel deprived making it harder to stay on track. Studies show that the effort we put into restricting ourselves and 'being good and saying no' can actually deplete us and leave us vulnerable. I know right?!!! After all this time... now you are asking 'why have I dieted for so long?'
3: Downsize your plate
Which over the last 100 years has grown, big plates require big servings. Research shows using a smaller plate is one of the most effective methods for portion control. A small plate looks full and avoids that feeling of deprivation. Don't believe what a different a plate can make? Check out the image below!
4: Don’t fall victim to hunger
Because hunger isn’t our friend, we make poor choices and can’t stay on track. That's also why you shouldn't go food shopping on an empty tummy, you'll quickly find your trolley mysteriously filled with treats. Yes, and if you are thinking, 'what's the point of the calorie restricted diets?'... exactly!!!
5: De-convenience your environment
By moving the unhealthy options away from your desk, to the back of the pantry and putting them in hard to access containers studies show that we eat less of these tasty morsels. It's spring after all, so get cleaning and re-organising the pantry, cupboard, fridge and freezer this week. And, if you find yourself stopping in for a cake after school drop off or on your way to grab a coffee, try a different route to work or school and avoid those triggers.
Half way folks!
Have you picked a tip you are going to start with yet?
6: Include a little protein
Because protein is the satiety nutrient, without it we can eat far more than we need.
7: Dish up and sit down
When eating, avoid having platters of food on your table in front of you; they tend to beg us to eat them. Dish up your meal at night, rather than helping yourself from platters.
8: Wait 20 minutes
Before you go in for a second helping or top up. It takes this long for your brain signals of fullness to switch on after a meal. Yep, that's why you can so easily overeat and end up feeling bloated after a meal that you just couldn't get enough of!
9: Start last and finish last
Chewing well tends to lead to eating more realistic portions; avoid wolfing down your meal, eating fast tends to mean eating more! If you have ever had a tooth ache you will know that this works a treat. Try eating slowly (mindfully if you will) just for a day and you will be surprised at how comfortably full you will feel and how much you will have enjoyed every mouthful without guilt.
10: Ask yourself if you’re hungry
Most of us eat with our eyes and emotions; few of us check how hungry we are and how much we should eat. If it’s there, we’ll eat it, hungry or not. Reconnect to hunger and satiety signals. If I were to ask you if you have ever eaten way more than you know you needed, would your answer be 'yes'? Of course, we have all done this, but now is the time to be more thoughtful about your eating, you'll enjoy your food and feel a whole lot less guilty.
Be kind to yourself, we know it takes at least a month to unlearn a habit and overwrite it with a new one. So, set yourself a target of three of the above and stick with them for 4-8 weeks before moving onto another set of changes.
If you need a little support you can find a fully qualified health coach here.
Ready? Set? Go!!!!
Live, laugh, enjoy
We all have a role to play in community health, the only question is how do we play this role? Through intelligent, evidence-based inquiry we can understand how to health coach to support others in taking on positive behaviour change.