Tips toward better eating

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Here are just a few of Susan Albers's mindful-eating tips:

-- Sit down when you're eating.

-- Use a plate for everything; don't just grab handfuls of snacks from bowls.

-- Leave evidence -- candy wrappers, empty wineglasses -- of what you've consumed in plain sight so you don't lose track.

-- Take time out to calm your mind, especially during stressful periods.

-- Store less-healthful foods where you can't easily see them; keep healthful foods such as fruit where you can see them.

Here are some ways to eat well, though mindlessly, from Brian Wansink:

-- Be aware that the greater the variety of foods you're faced with, the more you're likely to eat. Decide before a meal just how much you want to eat. And make half of that amount fruits and vegetables, the other half protein and starch.

-- Aim to be the slowest eater at the table: Start last and finish last. If that's too hard, identify the slowest eater and pace yourself by watching him or her.

-- Bear in mind that hosts and hostesses notice the number of servings you take, not the amount in each serving. So taking a teaspoonful of seconds will satisfy the food-pusher host as much as taking a full second helping.

-- Recognize that we all are subject to the environmental cues that drive us to overeat. Even experts such as Wansink aren't immune.

-- J.L.H.

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