Get in touch with your eating habits and understand your hunger patterns. Put a stop to those unnecessary hunger pangs and watch how you can easily shed the excess weight.
We often replace unhealthy food with healthier alternatives in our diet. However, when and how we eat makes a huge difference. A common mistake often overlooked is that you can’t put on weight if you eat healthy. The opposite is in fact true. It doesn’t matter what you eat as long as you eat too much of something, you are likely to put on weight. Mindful eating is necessary as it helps in successful weight management.
The stressful lives we live also make it difficult for us to keep to a fixed schedule of eating. While some of us follow a diet, others choose to binge eat. This can leave you feeling confused as to when you are truly hungry.
Below we have the hunger scale, to help provide a cue when you should eat and when to stop.
The Hunger Scale
1. Starving & Cranky
2. Very Hungry
4. Hunger Pangs, Ready to Eat
6. Almost Satisfied
8. Very Full
10. Food Coma
Rank your hunger level before you start eating. It will give you a good gauge as to how much you should eat. Try not to wait till stage 1 and 2 to start eating. We usually tend to overeat at this stage, going crazy at the sight of food. It is best to eat when you are reasonably hungry, not when you are famished.
Stages 3 and 4 are the best stages to begin eating. At this stage, you will have more control over what you eat and can therefore alter the portions.
It’s best to put the cutlery down at this stage if you feel you are in the green zone (stages 5, 6 and 7). Continuing to eat will just make you feel bloated and lose the lovely feeling of lightness. If you do decide to carry on eating, be honest with yourself.
Avoid stages 8 to 10, this level would mean that you have eaten more than you should have. If you feel like you have eaten like no tomorrow, this is a sign you are binge eating. Emotional eating is another reason why some of us land up in this stage. The issue has to then be dealt with separately.
We were born with internal cues to start and stop eating but tend to lose touch with them along the way. Just by listening to our bodies’ physical hunger and satisfaction cues, we can be more mindful of our eating patterns.