By Jim Nettleton
Remember your mom saying something like “You can’t leave the table until you finish your food”? Usually, this command was accompanied by a solemn statement concerning the number of hungry children in the world and was fashioned into the reason that we were not to waste our food.
The more sarcastically inclined among us would retort with a snappy line, urging mom to send the food to those kids. This response was rarely well received. The serious side of this childhood ritual was that it implanted a life long psychological bombshell that sneakily nudged us toward consuming large quantities of food. Following that blueprint is one of the major ingredients that lead people to crash diets to lose that extra weight that is piled on their bodies.
The new mantra has to be, ‘eat until you’re satisfied, not until you’re completely full.’ Leftover food will keep very well. There is no need to consume all of it at one sitting. In days past, when your mom gave you the ‘eat it all’ ultimatum, people didn’t realize the harm that kind of thinking could create all through life. At the time, it seemed a sensible approach. Today, we know that nothing could be further from the truth. Bad eating habits learned early can be an unrelenting albatross throughout our lives.
Here’s a valuable tip. If a lot of leftover food is more the rule than the exception after you and your family has finished a meal, then you need to rethink the quantity of food you’re preparing. That should be obvious, but many families just keep churning out excess food day after day, week after week. A bit too little food is far better than too much.
Another trouble area is going out to eat, whether at a restaurant or at a friend’s house. Being the polite folk we are, there is an implied obligation to play magician and make all food presented disappear. Many of us are reluctant to ask for a doggie bag at a restaurant, or to tell our hosts that we just can’t eat anymore. Don’t fall victim to this big diet mistake.
Another diet buster is our habit of putting all food that has been cooked for a particular dinner on the dining table, turning the meal into a sort of rotating buffet. A better idea is to fill a plate and take it to the table, eliminating the temptation of reaching for additional helpings that are just inches away. If you can reach more food easily, chances are you’ll grab it. For more tips and ideas, visit my web site through the link in the resource box below.
Maintaining a healthy weight is fast becoming a formidable challenge to all of us, especially Americans, whose tendency toward being overweight has been thoroughly chronicled in recent years. Following the above advice can help us break what has become a vicious cycle and get us moving in the right direction for our overall health. We need to seriously address our calorie intake and find creative ways to make our ideal weight a reality.
The old adage about getting exercise by pushing ourselves away from the table has never been more true, or more vital.
About the author:
Jim Nettleton is a radio and TV professional with wide-ranging interests. Visit his all-inclusive diet and weight loss site at http://www.jaynetinc.com/LoseWeight.