In the weight loss industry, it’s popular to tell people, “It’s not your fault.”
And in this case, it’s probably true. Between your parents directing you to “clean your plate,” the abundance of hyperpalatable foods (see Challenge #4), and the mega-meals served by chain restaurants, eating more than you need can feel completely natural.
Which means eating an appropriate-sized meal can feel… completely unnatural. At least until you get you used to it. And that requires practice.
A simple way to start:
Eat slowly (Challenge #3… again), and stop when you’re 80 percent full. Do this no matter how much is left on your plate or how uncomfortable it makes you feel.
This won’t be easy at first, and you may wonder, “Am I at 80 percent full or 70 percent?” or “Did I just totally mess up and go over?”
Don’t worry about it. The point is to become a more mindful eater and pay better attention to your body’s satiety signals. That takes time, and like any skill, you’ll improve with practice.
We’re going for progress here, not perfection.
Of course, it helps to start with a reasonable portion size. But you don’t need to enter your meals into a calculator ahead of time. You can use your hands to estimate how you should eat, with our simple but effective portion and calorie control guide.
With so many temptations on restaurant menus, it’s natural to feel a little tortured about what to order. Once that mental back-and-forth begins, it’s all too easy to say, “Heck with it, give me the carbonara and pass the bread sticks.”
Along with planning meals or your food choices (as in Challenge #2), you can also plan how to show up.
Every time you follow through on your plan, notice how you feel after you’ve finished your meal.
Ask yourself: “Am I just as satisfied as I would have been otherwise?”
If yes, that’s a positive step to encouraging the same behavior next time. (With more practice, smart choices become easier and easier.)
If no, try following these steps:
Is this your top challenge? Make sure to read 25 ways to eat well on-the-go for additional insights and strategies.
Maybe you love cookies. Or M&Ms. Or anything that’s rolled in sugar.
That’s completely normal, according to almost 50 percent of our new clients.
However, it’s typically not just the sweetness that appeals to your taste buds, belly, and brain. It’s a diabolically delicious combination of sugar, fat, and salt that makes certain foods nearly irresistible. There’s even a special name for them: hyperpalatable.
In fact, food manufacturers use this flavor formula to create products you can’t stop eating. (It’s great for sales, after all.)
The biggest challenge with these foods is their availability: They’re everywhere, including your kitchen.
So, remember Berardi’s First Law
If a food is in your house or possession, either you, someone you love, or someone you marginally tolerate will eventually eat it.
This also leads to the corollary of Berardi’s First Law:
If a healthy food is in your house or possession, either you, someone you love, or someone you marginally tolerate will eventually eat it.
We’re not saying you should make sweets off-limits. Instead, shape your environment to set yourself up for success.
What would happen if, next time you visit the grocery store, you bought some fruit for dessert instead of that jumbo pack of Oreos?
Try it, and observe what happens.
To learn more about how to handle hyperpalatable foods, read Manufactured deliciousness: Why you can’t stop overeating.
While this isn’t at the top of the challenge list overall, it was the #1 issue for men—with nearly 60 percent of guys raising their hand.
And turns out, these folks are spot-on. Almost everyone benefits from eating more slowly.
In fact, in our coaching method, slow eating is one of the first practices we ask clients to do. The reason is simple: It’s incredibly effective.
The act of consciously slowing down—even just taking a breath or two between bites at first—can help you eat less without feeling deprived.
And we’ve found it works for everyone from the most advanced dieters to those who’ve struggled with healthy eating for a lifetime.
To experience how you can use this practice to transform your body—starting at your next meal—see The 30-day slow eating challenge.
Ideal Nutrition Center
1602 Lohmans Crossing
Lakeway TX 78734
Ideal Nutrition Center
2410 West Ave N
San Angelo TX 76904