Our society has turned eating into an avenue for entertainment. Instead of simply consuming a meal, we “dine.” Gatherings of friends and family often consist of crowding around a table and enjoying the most delicious – and often unhealthy – dishes available.
While dining for entertainment isn’t necessarily a bad thing, when paired with the over-sized portions found in restaurants the country over, it can be a recipe for disaster. Most health professionals agree that treating yourself once in a while is fine, as long as you don’t go overboard. But how exactly do you avoid overdoing it? The answer may surprise you.
What Does Serving Size Have To Do With Overeating?
According to nutrition professor Dr. Brian Wansik, we may not have as much self-control as we think when it comes to knowing when we’re full. In a study he conducted on people consuming soup before the main course of a meal, he found that how satisfied participants perceived themselves to be was heavily dependent upon how much food remained in the dish (and other visual cues) rather than how they actually felt.
This is a major concern for those trying to age well by maintaining a healthy diet. It takes much more willpower than you may have thought to stop eating when you’re actually full while dining out. Serving size could be the difference between losing those last ten pounds and staying at your current weight. So, what’s the answer to this problem? Should you avoid dining out at all costs? Fortunately, you don’t have to go that far; there are simple things you can do to combat serving size sabotage.
What Can I Do To Avoid Overeating?
Luckily, avoiding overeating can be done, even when presented with huge portions of delicious foods. All it takes is a little planning and a lot of awareness – mind over matter. Here are some tips for keeping yourself in check:
- Pay attention to how much and how quickly you’re eating.
- When at home, use smaller dishes for entrees, such as cup-portioned bowls rather than large ones.
- When you do eat out, split your entree in half. You can either share one half or save it for another day.
- Eat soup before the main course, just go for the smallest size and avoid heavy cream soups.
- Eat a small salad before your main dinner course.
- For lunch, eat a large salad with plenty of vegetables and other healthy toppings.
With these simple tips, you’ll be able to enjoy socializing over a meal without feeling guilty. Just remember, it’s all in your head. For more tips on staying healthy as you age, check out Matrix Age Management in Amarillo.