Eating healthfully is an evolutionary process – a gradual shift in your food choices and eating behaviors over time. Naturally, the food you eat and enjoy changes as you grow from a child into an adult. However, young children can teach us a lot about how to eat sensibly as they are born with built-in appetite wisdom. Like the gas gauge on your car that tells you when it’s time to fuel up and when it’s time to stop, children intuitively know when they are hungry or full – they are masters of self-regulation with food.
It is very telling when a child only eats a little and loses interest in food – the child is full. That’s the end of the story regardless of how long you’ve slaved in the kitchen! Fast forward 20 years – that child (now an adult) most likely will keep eating that gourmet meal because it’s not only delicious, but it’s there. Studies have shown that grown-ups tend to eat what is put in front of them – even if it’s too much. Most of us shut off our internal cues of hunger and fullness – because our natural appetite instincts are overridden by the allure of second helpings and tasty desserts. The danger in this is obvious – overeating and weight gain – not great for health!
So what are some strategies to successfully rewrite your eating script to live a healthier, happier life? Take a look at the check list below for some sure-fire ways to rethink what you eat and drink forever.
- Avoid meal skipping, especially breakfast. While all meals are a chance to get valuable nutrients, breakfast truly is the mac-daddy of your daily meal triad!
- Do daily food jotting by keeping a notebook or your phone with you to write down what you eat and drink 24/7. You’ll be surprised where excess, empty calories are coming in!
- Swap sliced chopped or diced vegetables for refined carbs snacks like white flour-based crackers, cookies and chips.
- Banish the regular soda for mineral water or zero-calorie fruit infused water.
- Aim for the better butters such nut butters like peanut or almond butter.
- Go meatless at least one day a week (it’s better for you and the planet!). Make meals with plant foods like as tofu, beans, nuts, whole grains, vegetables, and fruits.
Excerpted from The Essential Guide to Healthy and Healing Foods by
Victoria Shanta Retelny, RD, LDN with Jovanka JoAnn Milivojevic