Part of the TOPS approach to healthy eating is that all foods can fit, within reason. This works well for me, as I’ve found that every time I try to avoid a food entirely I end up wanting that food ten times more. Lately, I’ve been shifting my focus to feelings of fullness. This way, I can eat what I want without feeling deprived. But this approach does take practice and can be easier said than done. To help you feel more in tune with how full you feel while eating, try one of these tips.
Try the broccoli trick. I recently came across a tip that suggested stopping eating when you first start feeling full and asking yourself, “If this were steamed broccoli, would I still keep eating?” If this answer is yes, keep eating. If no, push your plate away. If you can’t stand broccoli, substitute any other vegetable or fruit that you enjoy.
Distract yourself. It may take your brain a little while to realize that you’re full. When you first start to feel full, push your plate away and distract yourself with dinner conversation, having a glass of water or even leaving the room for a bit (if possible). You may find that within 10 to 15 minutes, you’re more satisfied than you initially thought.
Save room for later. A member of our workplace TOPS chapter shared that, if she stops eating dinner when she first starts to feel full, she enjoys a small treat like air-popped popcorn later in the evening. Think of it as bargaining with yourself or making a simple tradeoff.
Losing weight, and keeping it off, doesn’t have to involve complicated diets or restricted foods. This week, try paying a little more attention to how you feel when you’re eating. You might be surprised by what your body tells you.
Members, you can read more about paying attention to your body and mindful eating in chapter 4 of TOPS lifestyle guide, Real Life: The Hands-on Pounds-off Guide.