How should you eat? Yes…..how. You may say, “But I know how to eat. I put food in my mouth, I chew, I swallow and repeat. Easy…right? ” Well, yes….and no. Many people today have an emotional relationship with their food. It becomes a friend, a companion to celebrate their successes with or turn to when stress overwhelms their lives. Food takes on a life of its own and becomes a living being.
Food has become a source of pleasure, comfort and reward for people today. Advertisers have developed campaigns to make you think of food 24/7 and we wonder why obesity is at epidemic proportions. It’s on T.V, radio, billboards and our computers. Some of us think about food when we first get up in the morning, all throughout the day and as we lay our head down at night.
How Should We Think Of Food?
Let me ask you a question. If you had a high performance car like a Maserati or like my husband, his beloved Mustang.
His Mustang has a high performance engine and he won’t put anything but the best fuel in her. He makes sure to perform maintenence when it’s due and he babies that car so it will last a long time.
Our bodies are like that car. Food is meant to be fuel for our body. It helps it to run efficiently. Just like gas is used to make a car run.
Without gas, your car won’t get you very far and the same with food. Now what happens to your car if you put bad gas in it? You start having problems like lower gas mileage, it get’s sluggish, no pick up when you press on the gas pedal.
The same thing happens when you eat a bunch of junk! The cleaner you eat, the better you feel. It really is that simple!
The thing to remember is that you have to balance what you take in with how active you are. When you take in more calories than you burn, you gain weight. High fat foods have more calories so it takes less of them to meet your daily output.
So Much Information Is Confusing
There’s been a lot of talk recently about intermitent fasting, the One Meal A Day Diet, and grazing or eating every 3-4 hours. The truth is, you can lose weight using any of these methods. Every person is different.
I’m hypoglycemic so it’s best for me to eat every few hours. Now I can easily eat more than what I’m supposed to using this method so I have to be careful to not eat too much at each mini meal.
How Tracking Your Food Can Help
Tracking your food is a good way to make sure you aren’t eating too much regardless of which method you use. There are many apps and programs you can use to do this. I prefer MyFitnessPal for tracking not only my food but my workouts as well. I have linked my FitBit with it and it keeps track of my workouts, my steps, what I eat, and my water intake. It really helps me to be mindful. You can easily search for foods, create your own recipes and they have super informative blog posts for you to check out.
Why Is Tracking Your Food Important
A study was done by Kaiser Permanente’s Center For Health Research showing that peope who keep food diaries lose twice as much weight as those who don’t. It creates awareness about what you eat, makes you more accountable, and teaches you how much you should be eating.
Bringing It All Together
So let’s bring it all together. You want to break the emotional attachment you have with food and start looking at it as fuel. It doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it but just remember what it’s really for. The key to fueling your body when you are trying to lose weight is to make sure your calories in is less than your calories out. You can do that by tracking your food through one of the many ways that are now available. Tracking your food will also make you mindful, accountable, and teach you how much you should be eating.
Food is great! Food is a necessity! Food doesn’t have to be boring! Have fun with it, experiment with different recipes. Just remember that food is meant for fuel. It’s something your body needs to operate efficiently and the better you take care of your body, the better it will take care of you!
Let me know what your thoughts are on this subject. Any recipes you want to share? I’d love to hear from all of you.