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Many people think that you have to go on some sort of strange or crazy diet to lose weight. We have heard all of them out there and they are not easy to make ourselves follow – low carb, juicing, etc. We have developed things in life that are the hardest to break – habits. Regardless of what it is, it seems to be hard to change and it should be. We develop habits based on what we “feel” we want. If I like to get a massage its because I have determined it “feels” nice and I don’t have to get punched in the face to know that would not feel good (please don’t go get punched in the face to see if I’m telling the truth). The same goes with what we eat. We eat because we feel hungry and depending on how hungry we feel determines how much we eat.
Like I said earlier, “completely changing a habit is hard to break” but it is a lot simpler to adapt to it. I’ll get back to that, but first let me explain our circle of pain, cravings, food, and satisfaction. This is what we normally think; 1st – “Oww my stomach hurts, boy am I hungry”, 2nd – “Right now I could eat an entire Tyrannosaurus” (for my vegetarian friends “I could eat an entire field of grass”), 3rd – “Num num num numm and num” (that’s us eating and eating), 4th – “That was good, I am stuffed”, 5th – “I’m just going to take a little coma break”. I’m sure this sounds right, I’ve been there and was my normal routine. Why, you ask? It felt good obviously, besides food is delicious!
A little known secret, our brain is not as fast as we think it is. Yes, we only use less than 10% of our brain and some of us even less and even with that little its still faster than a computer. Weird I know, but follow me for a moment. This is the correct circle of pain, cravings, food, and satisfaction. The brain sends its messengers boys to our stomach to beat it up for not paying on time and it starts panicking, then like cavemen we start searching for food and when we find it we start devouring everything in sight. Then 20 minutes later (WebMD), the brain sends its messenger boys again to tell the stomach that’s enough. 20 minutes, that’s a long time, I could have ate a Tyrannosaurus and a Pterodactyl.
So whats the correct method?
1st – Relax before you start eating and the best way to do that is to drink some water first, also taking a deep breath on top of that wouldn’t hurt. 2nd – Regardless of what you have on your plate, break it up into 4 quarters. For example, you have 8 chicken wings, some broccoli, some mashed potatoes, and maybe some corn. I am not saying that each one of them is 1 quarter; I am saying 2 chicken wings with a little bit of broccoli, little bit mashed potatoes, and little bit of corn is a quarter. This way you have a good balance of different things. 3rd – After you finish 1 quarter (at a normal human base not a water buffulo), take a small break to drink something and figure out if your still hungry. 4th – If your still hungry, repeat 3rd step until you don’t “feel” hungry anymore. Chances are you might finish everything in your plate which is fine, you might have set yourself up with the right size portions. If you didn’t finish, do not worry just wrap it up and put it away because you will get hungry later and nothing beats leftovers.
Why this is good?
Your body needs the calories from the food it ate to function properly but it can only do that at a certain speed depending on what your doing. As it converts the calories to energy it generates heat that helps burn the fat (Our bodies will attack the fat only after it has finished what it could with the calories we took in. If you eat too much at one time, the added calories will not have the opportunity to be used as energy and your body will store them as fat. Imagine a jug with a small hole in the bottom and water is being added at the top faster then it can escape. Then several hours later we turn the faucet on again for 20 minutes, now we have more than what we had the first time we stopped. If we keep repeating that then it has no chance to normalize and we end up having more and more water each time. But if we turned down the speed of the faucet with the same hole at the bottom and repeated the process several hours later we could have the same or less water each time. That is the same concept with how much we eat at one time and how our body reacts.
So what changes?
Lets say that normally you eat 3 meals a day; breakfast, lunch, and dinner. If you follow the method above instead of having a groggy feeling of being tired after you eat, you will have more energy. You will end up eating less at a time and your body will properly use the calories it takes in more efficiently. You will find yourself eating snacks, which we all love to do, between breakfast and lunch and between lunch and dinner. So in turn you might eat 5 time a day instead but the difference is your body would have the opportunity to use it correctly and will help you maintain or lose weight.
Are different foods processed differently, absolutely! But even if you didn’t change the foods you ate and only adapted how you ate them, you would still benefit.
For different food ideas and routines checkout my Food Routine page where you will find food ideas for losing, maintaining or gaining weight.
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