We aim to reset our clients’ eating behaviours to be based around real hunger (in a good way); so that means not eating between meals, eating appropriate portion sizes, avoiding second helpings and puddings, and so on.
If you reset your expectations to three meals a day you’ll soon get used to it and really look forward to meal times as something special, just how they should be.
We live in an environment where food is constantly available. It’s difficult to go anywhere without having an eating opportunity. Even the countryside is littered with signs of junk food, discarded junk-drinks bottles and wrappers. Never has there been a time of such food abundance. So it’s not surprising that so many of us are overweight and out of touch with real physical hunger.
Just as we can screen out background noise when talking to someone at a party we can do the same with food. If a party has 100 guests it doesn’t mean you have to interact with them all; same with food, just because it’s there it doesn’t mean we have to eat it. Learning to listen to your body’s natural physical signs is a great skill, and to not be fooled by your head and emotions.
If you’re tempted to eat more than you need just stop for a few seconds and grade your hunger like this:
- Feeling a bit bloated and full. Not at all hungry.
- Comfortable, no acute need to eat.
- Starting to be slightly hungry but could wait an hour or two.
- Properly hungry for a mealtime.
- Shaky, low blood sugar, headachey hunger.
If you are 1, 2 or 3 you don’t need to eat yet.
If you’re a 4 then have one of the planned meals.
If you’re a 5 beware of eating too much or the wrong things. Try not to get to a 5!
You can even keep a tick box with the above gradings stuck up where you keep your food and physically tick which level you are.