When there's so much delicious mouth-watering food around, it's hard not to pile a plate sky high. Hence, why people start loosening up their belts after the Christmas and New Year's Eve celebrations. You won't, however. Because you have these 5 tips on how not to overeat this holiday season.
1. Use a smaller plate. It makes sense, right? The less food your plate can hold, the less food you’ll eat. This doesn’t mean though that you’ll be using a saucer as a dinner plate. See, in the not-so olden days plates used to be 10 inches. Now, they’ve made it larger at 12 inches. So, how about bringing out lola’s favorite plates for Christmas? It is a special occasion after all.
Smaller plates will also make sure you’re not getting any food you’ll only be forced to eat in the end. You’ll be picker and will only be getting food you know you’ll enjoy.
2. Fill half your plate with veggies. Eating more than you wanted to isn’t as big of a problem if you’re gobbling more on the good stuff. “When you increase vegetables, you add more fiber and water, and therefore you can eat a larger, more filling portion without lots of calories,” said registered dietician and host of the Healthy Appetite show Ellie Krieger. So go ahead, cram your plate with kare-kare. Just make sure there’s more sitaw and pechay than tuwalya.
3. Limit your trips to the buffet table. Tell yourself you're only filling a plate of food twice. Twice because who can resist another serving of mama's chicken asado? Could be less than that but absolutely no more. Remember, you're using a smaller plate too.
And another thing, who here's guilty of mindlessly picking at pica-pica? If you said yes, here's a tip: keep the platters of chips and peanuts away from arms reach. If it's harder to get at, you're less likely to go through the effort.
“Plate the food and leave the serving bowls off the table because, typically, when food is within reach, we eat more and it has nothing to do with hunger but because it tastes good,” said Brian Wansink, a university researcher and author of Mindful Eating.
4. If you know you can’t stop, don’t start. Once you start, you can’t stop so don’t start at all. Chips are easy to munch on and hard to put down. Resist the temptation from the start. Don’t tell yourself you’ll eat just one piece because, come on, who can live up to that really?
5. Eat slow. Many studies have shown that fast eaters tend to eat more. Slow eaters on the other hand, eat less. One study presented at a meeting of the North American Association for the Study of Obesity showed that a slower eating pace resulted to lesser calorie intake. A Japanese study involving 1,700 women found that eating slowly resulted to feeling full sooner.
One reason might be because “it takes approximately 20 minutes from the time you start eating for your brain to send out signals of fullness. Leisurely eating allows ample time to trigger the signal from your brain that you are full. And feeling full translates into eating less,” said director for nutrition at WebMD Kathleen M. Zelman.
Besides, you should enjoy your home-cooked festive meal. Take this time to chat with your relatives at the dinner table too. Christmas and New Year only come once a year after all.
Sources: Sept. 6, 2015. "Rightsize Your Plate and Your Waist: 11 Portion Control Tips That Work". huffingtonpost.com April 6, 2009. "7 Expert Tricks for Calorie and Portion Control". webmd.com Undated. "Slow Down, You Eat Too Fast". webmd.com