Slow Your Roll!
Finding yourself with New Year's intentions of resolving to improve your diet and lose weight, AGAIN? They say insanity is doing the same thing again and again but expecting different results, so be willing to try something you haven't considered before. Our registered dietitians can help you navigate WHAT to eat for weight management, but have you ever stopped to explore HOW you are eating, as well? Breaking a goal like "I will lose 15 lbs" down into action steps like "I will sit down when I eat" or "I will eat slowly, taking at least 7 minutes to finish a meal" can make all the difference in your success.Do you consider yourself a fast eater? A slow eater? Or you're not really sure? Lacking insight into our problems or weaknesses can sometimes impede progress. If you're not sure where you fall on this spectrum, observe your habits next time you're dining in a group atmosphere. Are you the first to finish your meal by a long shot, the last one still chewing, or blending in somewhere in between? (Chances are, you may have been told if you're a slow eater, but others may be less inclined to point out that you've just inhaled your meal!)So why does the rate at which we eat even matter? Simply put, the faster you eat, the more likely you are to overeat. It takes time for your gut and brain to communicate that it has had enough and feels satisfied, so if you're scarfing down your meal, you may take in more energy than you needed by the time you get that memo. Do you routinely leave the table feeling stuffed? Maybe eating too quickly is to blame. Studies have also found that eating more slowly improves digestion (you chew your food more and swallow less air) and increases the feeling of satiety as well.Your health advisor can help you on your journey of eating more slowly. Want to get started on your own?
Here are some strategies to slow your roll!
1) Put down your fork in between bites.
2) Sip water in between bites.
3) Add a course. Instead of plating everything together, start the meal with a salad or a piece of fruit and pause for a few minutes before bringing on the main course.
4) Try eating with your non dominant hand when using utensils (or using chop sticks if you really want to have fun with it). This can be especially helpful early in the process when eating slowly doesn't feel second nature yet.
5) If you love feedback in the form of numbers, try timing your meal and adding a minute to your weekly lunch time average, or count the number of times you chew before swallowing and be intentional about adding to it. (if you're not into counting or numbers, no pressure to do this! )