Eat with your body, not with your eyes!
Early in November I had the opportunity to attend the Connecticut Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Annual Fall Meeting. One of the speakers was Jim Painter, PhD, RD. He really opened my eyes to how easily our appetites are influenced by portion sizes and food availability.
20 years ago a bagel was 140 calories, now they make them so large that the average bagel is 350 calories. A normal soda used to be 6.5 ounces, and is now 20 ounces, a difference of 168 calories. Even our plates are being made bigger in order to fit more food on them! Most people wouldn’t consider half of a bagel enough food and most people feel the need to completely fill their plates during mealtime, even if it is a balanced, healthy meal.
Not only have our portions grown, but also food availability has grown. You can take a 10-minute drive and it is likely that you will pass multiple food establishments, most of them fast food. By combining these two realities, our society makes it easy for us to not only over eat, but to over eat lower nutrient dense foods. This is why it is important to listen to your body’s natural hunger cues. Sometimes one serving just doesn’t feel like enough, though. One way to keep a balanced, properly portioned, healthy diet is to eat frequent, small meals. This way, your body never reaches such low stores that you are tempted to over eat. We all know that lazy, draggy feeling after eating too big of a meal, it is much nicer to enjoy your food and feel great after eating it!
The larger portions and increased availability of calories have lead to an obesity epidemic in our country. Obesity is associated with many other health concerns such as heart disease, diabetes, and hypertension. In order to keep your body healthy and well nourished, be mindful during meals and snacks while listening to your body. And if you are struggling with losing weight, see a Registered Dietitian/Licensed Nutritionist. Here at Eat Right Bucks County, we can help you lose weight.
As reference, each meal should have 1 serving of whole grains, one serving of protein, and 2 servings of fruits and vegetables. If you’re unsure what a serving looks like, it is about one fist full of food. Check out our other blogs for healthy meal and snack ideas! Or schedule an appointment with one of our Registered Dietitians to help you with an individualized Nutrition plan. Doylestown weight loss