Are you guilty of any of these bad eating behaviors?
1. Your meals regularly come out of a carton, a package, or over the deli counter.
2. You almost never eat alone: TV, the Internet, phone, or your favorite magazine is there for nearly every meal.
3. You find it next to impossible to walk away from free food, even if you’re not hungry – including all-you-can-eat buffets, supermarket sample tables, and those “taste me” booths at flea markets.
4. You spend more time feeling guilty about what you ate than the time it took to prepare it.
5. You eat when you’re hungry and continue eating once you are full.
6. You eat when you’re sad, mad, hurt, annoyed, irritated and even when you’re happy.
7. Your happy eating is followed by more guilt.
If you are reading this and thinking, “That’s me,” you may have fallen prey to one or more unhealthy eating styles or lifestyle habits that can get in the way of losing weight.
Sometimes, destructive eating patterns are easy to notice, such as when you turn to food every time you’re facing a problem. But often, the cues are so subtle you don’t even notice what’s happening.
Habits once formed by the brain, require very little cognitive thinking. The brain creates a quick path for the behavior to follow and doesn’t trouble itself to focus on that area anymore. That’s why until you really come face-to-face about your behavior, you don’t even notice that they exist.
So while you might recognize that you overeat when you’re very upset, you might not realize how much you eat or the types of food you choose to eat.
Behavior Patterns That Are Hard To Break
While eating styles are as individual as we are, some researchers believe they can be grouped into just a handful of behavior patterns. Many of these patterns, once discovered are much easier to break.
Some of the behavior patterns that wreak havoc on your weight loss attempts can be found below:
Food Fretting: You’re overly concerned with what you eat, and have a negative relationship with food. You feel guilty about everything that you put in your mouth and spend an hour worrying about what you ate and condemning yourself for eating it.
Mult-Tasking and Snacking: You almost always eat while doing something else — like watching TV, answering email or even cooking. You barely taste your food, because your mind is preoccupied with your tasks. All of these factors can lead to overeating.
Emotional Distress Eating: You turn to food not only during life’s traumatic moments, but anytime you feel stressed, anxious, or a little upset.
Fast Foodie Fiend: It seems as if you are “hooked”on or addicted to processed and convenience foods, and you gulp them down fast!
Solo Dining: You use food to fill a social void – and the more often you eat alone, the more you eat. Without active conversation, you will usually eat more than you would if eating with someone else. However, some people actually eat less or not at all, which is worse.
Unappetizing Atmosphere: You eat behind the wheel, at your desk, or standing up in front of the refrigerator. This keeps you from concentrating on what you’re eating, and makes it more likely you’ll overeat. You need to make eating a celebratory time, use nice china or plates, use candlelight to add ambience to your dinner hour.
Sensory Disregard: Mealtime is hectic, and you disconnect entirely from the eating experience. This leads to eating without thinking, and that usually means overeating. If your mind is on cleaning the kitchen rather than eating your meal, you just won’t enjoy it. Chances are, you’ll gobble your food, or lose your appetite during the meal, in either case, many times, the real down side is that you return to the kitchen later for high calorie snacks.
It’s times like these, when a fitness journal can help to bring about success. It brings you face-to-face with what you are eating, when you are eating, how much you are eating, and all the feelings in between.
The best way to get positive results from your fitness journal is not only writing down what you ate, but how much you ate, where you were when you ate it, the time of day it was, why you ate it, if you were alone or with someone else, and, most importantly, what else you were doing while you were eating.
After one to two weeks of journaling your food habits, you should begin to see a pattern emerge.
Your Eating Style
Figuring out your eating style is important in helping you to make better choices. Armed with the pattern you have been able to determine by using your fitness journal, you can begin to make changes so that you eat healthier.
Much of the way we eat is just habit and habits can be broken. It just takes willpower and brainpower to put those changes into effect.
Each week, make a meal plan for the upcoming week and purchase all the foods that you will need from your grocer. This will keep you from being forced to eat quick foods, when you already have a meal planned.
Choose foods that you enjoy but try to make better choices in terms of fat, sugar and sodium content. Don’t try to restrict your diet too severely or quickly unless advised by your physician. The object is to adapt to new eating styles that you can live with for the rest of your life.
Resist the temptation to grab a quick bite at a fast food joint. Although those places do offer some nutritionally sound menu items, when you drive through the window, chances are you are getting fried foods that are easy to eat from a bag.
There are many sins, or mistakes that can lead to unhealthy eating habits, but the good news is, all of these habits can be broken and changed for the better. It takes commitment to make changes but the rewards are worth
Start a discussion by leaving a comment: