Before you just reach for that cookie or grab yourself a handful of chips to stick in your mouth, STOP and THINK about how you would answer 3 simple questions.
These 3 questions provide a quick yet thoughtful process for making better decisions throughout your day.
Question #1: Am I hungry?
Our bodies were designed to tell us when to eat and when not to. If we listen to our bodies, this by itself goes a long way in helping us to manage our weight. Focusing on listening to our physical body helps separate out emotional eating. So before you stick that next thing in your mouth, stop and think for a moment, “Am I really hungry, or am I struggling with some craving, or using food for something other than to nourish my body?”
If you can answer yes to this question, by all means eat. Don’t deprive your body of the nourishment that it needs. Withholding nutrients the body needs will lead to overeating in the future, which will only sabotage your weight loss efforts. If you answer “no” to the question, then find a way to walk away and move onto the next question.
Question #2: Is it Smart?
This question focuses on helping you make better choices. You must realize that everything you put into your body is an opportunity to nourish, heal and strengthen the body, or weaken it with foods that have little if any nutritional value.
If it’s smart and you are hungry, then by all means enjoy. If it not smart then you need to decide if it is worth it or find ways that you could make it smarter ( could I not eat the bun, order it without cheese, hold the dressing etc.).
Question #3: How much do I really need?
The important thing to remember is to only eat until you are satisfied not stuffed! Taking in too much food at a time only leads to fat storage. Also eating slow will help you find the right answer to this question, since it take 15 to 20 minutes for your brain to register that you are full. Eating too rapidly or when you are distracted can quickly lead to over indulging and unwanted extra pounds.
If you make it to this question and the answer to the first two were, “No, you are not hungry and what you are about to eat is not smart” (perhaps like at the office when someone brings in a treat and you are finding the temptation hard to resist) then this question becomes extremely important. Could you possible just get by with a small taste or a few bites? Do you really need to have a whole piece or more?
When you get to this place and you have taken the time to think through and answer the questions, even if you make the wrong choice you will be more mindful of the choice you did make.
So go ahead and give it a try and see if changing how you think doesn’t actually change how you eat!