I just finished eating and I got to thinking about all the ways over the years I have tricked myself into cutting back food intake at dinner.
I grew up as an athlete, with a brother who played college football, three sisters who were also very active, and a mother who was a PE teacher. We were introduced to healthy foods at an early age but we were all very big eaters. We put in hours a day on a field so the amount of food we consumed at dinner didn't really do much to the waist at that time.
When I moved away to college I knew I was not going to be as active as I was in high school ; although I did hit the gym multiple times a week and went running as much as possible, it was never the same as hours on a soccer field. I started coming up with tricks to eat less since I was doing less. Well those tricks have continued and evolved over the years.
My tips and tricks for eating dinner at home.
1. Serve dinner from the kitchen, do not bring leftovers to the table. You are less likely to go in for 2nds if you have to get up and walk to the kitchen to get them. Having them within arms length (the table) makes it easier to over eat and feel TOO full after dinner.
2. Serve dinner on a smaller plate. If you use large plates you are more likely to serve yourself and others way more than an actual "serving" of food.
3. Serve salad first instead of with the rest of your dinner. You are less likely to serve yourself a huge plate of salad if you have other food to choose from. If you serve your salad/greens first you have no choice but to eat them plus you have just filled up on healthy greens and will consume less during dinner.
My tips and tricks to eating breakfast/lunch
1. Plan your meals for the week so you know exactly what you need and how much for the week.
2. Measure out all your food the night before so you can grab and go. Having all your meals planned and measured means you are not tempted to snack on anything not in your "diet" plan. Although you can give yourself a splurge (chips, pretzels...) but only measure out one serving and throw it in your bag. You can't take more if it's not there :o)
3. Eat high fiber meals for breakfast to help fill you up from the get go.
4. Make sure your breakfast includes a little of everything. A healthy balance of protein and carbs are a great way to start your day off.
My tips and tricks to eating out
1. (This is the rule I live by) Restaurants are notorious for serving WAYYYY MORE than an actual serving. As soon as I receive my dinner I immediately divide everything in half and scoot all the extras to one side to be packaged up and taken home.
2. If you are going to splurge at dinner (and why shouldn't you) make better choices throughout the day. Eat extra fruits and veggies, less carbs and try to watch the mindless snacking.
3. If you must get dessert opt for the Shot Glass versions (if available) or only order 1 dessert everyone agrees and split it. You will feel less guilty at the end of dinner if you didn't consume it all by your lonesome.
4. Always order salad dressing on the side and opt for dry veggies instead of buttered or "seasoned"
I know I have more in my head somewhere but this is the start.
What is your favorite tip to consuming less?
Ciao and sticking to one serving