Food is a loaded word, wrapped in psychology, chemistry and blanket statements. Most of us spend a lifetime trying to control ourselves around it. We try to teach our kids to do the same. We justify our diets with “should of”, “didn’t”, “could of”, “if only”, and more guilt and negative thoughts than can fit inside a cookie jar. Dr. David Lewis, author of Impulse, recommends ten easy changes to improve your eating habits. I have selected five of my favorite ones to share with you today.
5 Eating Habits to Rule Them All
- Eat from smaller plates and bowls- Eating starts with your eyes. Studies show that if your small plate is full, your stomach will feel full faster than if a small amount of food is placed on a large plate.
- Use a tall narrow glass, when drinking beverages other than water- Water is best, but if you decide to drink something else, trick your eyes into think you’ve had your fill. Using a tall, narrow glass creates an optical illusion. Your brain registers the height of the glass before paying attention to the width.
- Eat with chopsticks- I first heard about this trick when I was a teenager (a few years ago…;). Your brain loves a challenge. Eating with chopsticks provides an opportunity to practice your dexterity while taking smaller bites. Your brain needs 20 minutes to register that you’re full. Using chopsticks slows you down and thus prevents you from overeating.
- Get enough sleep- Sleep is necessary for hunger and impulse control. Less sleep = weight gain and poor diet, while more sleep = improved weight regulation and better food choices.
- Use your non-dominant hand to feed yourself- Being from an occupational therapy background, I love this one! If all your life you have used your right hand to fork food into your mouth, using your left hand will feel unnatural to your brain. This forces it to create new pathways and work harder at a habitual task. It also slows your eating down, and forces you to be mindful about your actions.
These five simple changes should help you and your family improve your eating habits. It’s the small steps we take that make all the difference. Happy eating!
Subscribe to our free updates, and get helpful tips on health and wellness, relationships and family life delivered straight to your inbox!
You can also follow us on Twitter: