Eyes Bigger Than Your Stomach? Well, Maybe Not…

December 8th, 2010 by Amy Gonsalves Leave a reply »

Professor Brian Wansink is a smart guy.  He has written a number of books and more than 100 academic articles on eating and why we eat more than we think we eat.  Fascinating.  He’s one of the smarties behind the 100 calorie snack packs.

I told you he’s a smart guy!

I know for me that I realized when I was trying to lose weight that it was better for me to accept that I could not (and still can’t) stop eating halfway through a bag than it was to try and change that about myself and my eating habits.

But what I could change, and did change, was the size of the bag.

I’m sure we’ve all hit blood sugar numbers way higher than we expected because we weren’t paying attention to how much we were eating.  I’ve been known to frequently double-bolus (prior to eating for what I think I’m going to eat, and then after eating when I try to compensate with extra insulin for the additional food I did eat). 

So how do we change our eating habits if we don’t even know what those habits are??

No easy answer, of course, but Wansink has some suggestions to change some habits that won’t be so threatening:

  • Sit next to the person you think will be the slowest eater when you go to a restaurant. 
  • In a group, be the last one to start eating when a plate is put in front of you.
  • At home, put high-calorie foods on the plate before you sit down at the table.  Conversely, bring the veggies with you to the table.
  • At a buffet, put only two items on your plate at a time.
  • Never eat directly from a package.
  • Wrap tempting food in foil so that you don’t see it.

I’ve got a few additions to this brief list. 

  • For me, it works to keep the more dangerous foods out of the kitchen and put them in another space altogether, like in our garage.
  • If I don’t want to eat it, I don’t buy it.
  • If my husband buys it, and I don’t want to eat it, I ask him to keep it on top of the fridge.  (He’s a foot taller than I am.)
  • I drink a lot of water.  If I want to slow down my eating at any certain meal, I’ll make myself drink twice the water than I otherwise would.

None of these strategies are going to melt off any weight on their own… but they won’t sabotage your efforts, either, and they are pretty subtle changes that make it easier for you to take off the pounds one at a time.  It’s worth considering.

Have you come up with strategies that have helped you?  Please share them!

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