Updated: May 17
For lots of people food is triggering. It can be linked to culture, childhood, self-esteem and much more.
You can improve your relationship to food by working on your knowledge about it and the way you consider it.
Here are 5 tips to help you control what you eat.
Come back to the basics
Forget about the trends! That is the very first thing to do!
Once you have understood that all the trends about diets have the same goals as any other trend, to make you buy and consume, you can come back to the basics!
I won't say it enough, protein, carbs and fat are the most important things to know about!
Once you understand the way your body works and what you need to eat to fuel it at its best, everything becomes easier.
Different food has different function. Protein help you maintain your muscle mass, fat is primordial for your vital organs etc. And so it is important to get all the nutrients your body needs!
That is where a better health starts!
Be aware of what you eat
I believe that knowing what you are doing and why you are doing it will help you applying it.
If you know how much protein you need a day and how much protein there is in a piece of chicken, it will be easier to know how much chicken you better eat.
It is not about calculating and weighting everything you eat every single day of your life. It is just about doing it enough times to know it and then repeat it. You probably have 5 to 6 dishes or favorite food you often eat. Learn a bit more about the protein and calories there are in the portions you are serving yourself with will help you know better what you are eating and have an idea about the amount of calories you are consuming in a day.
Being aware does not mean you have to starve or stop yourself, it just means that if you are eating something, you are fully taking the decision to eat it knowing what it contains. And so it is under your control. You know if it is worth it or not.
Try out and find what is working for you
Everyone is different and so there is no magic diet that will work for everyone. You need to try out and find out what is best working for you.
The principles about protein carbs and fat are meaningfull and work for everyone, however you can't know which exact diet will work for you if you don't try it.
You then have to experiment and look for something that suits you.
Whenever you are happy with the impact your food has on your diggestion and your every day performances, stick to it!
Do not do cheat meals
Cheat meals started from a good intention.
However deciding that there is one day of the week where you eat whatever you want sounds more like a trigger rather than a good idea.
Eating food that is less healthy is not bad, as long as it is not done too often and that you keep a regular physical activity.
There are 2 problems that come to my mind when I think about cheat meals.
First, randomly deciding that a specific day will be the day you will eat what you want is a bit counter intuitive. When this day arrives you might not want it anymore, but at the same time you probably don't want to wait 1 more week to 'enjoy' yourself so you might end up forcing you. And that is not a good attitude to have towards food.
Secondly, if you feel that you want to eat something 'naughty' but can't because it is not your cheat day you might create frustration until this day arrives and then binge. And you do not want to do that. Binging means your diet is out of your control and considered as a food disorder.
Instead, you better allow yourself to eat something less healthy anytime you want. Knowing that if you do it too often it won't be the best for your health but if you do it every now and then the impact will be very little.
Enjoy your food!
Eating healthy does not mean tasteless or boring. Everything is about balance! As said before, being aware of what you eat will help you reach this balance.
You want to eat a caloric ice cream today? Fair enough! You have 2 options.
Option 1, adapt your diet on the same day by for example reducing the carbs on one meal and eat more vegetables to reduce calories but keep the fullfeeling.
Option 2, you can decide to get these extra calories today and that is not a problem either! This is your decision and it is under your control!
Having a regular physical activity and a balanced diet most of the time is enough to have results and control on your weight.
Eating the food you want no matter the calories it contains or how processed it is is fine too if you don't do it too often.
Keep it balanced!