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Gabby’s Top Tips for Eating Smarter

Tips and Tricks for Eating Smarter

By Gabrielle Reece

Healthy eating can be delicious and doesn’t have to require a lot of effort. All you need to know are a few insider tips to make living a healthier, low fat, and low-calorie life with relative ease. These are tricks I use myself and they’re a huge part of why I’ve stayed in shape for all these years.

  1. Sit down when you eat. It’s too easy to forget about the foods that you pop in your mouth while cooking, clearing the table or standing.

  2. Don’t eat while you’re on the phone, checking email or watching TV. One study found that people ate an average of over 40 percent more potato chips while watching TV than they did when they weren't tuning in. This statistic is not surprising since while distracted, you don’t always notice what you’re taking in; it’s helpful to be conscious and in the moment.

  3. Eat slowly. It takes fifteen to twenty minutes after eating for your brain to register that you’re full. Eat too fast and you can take in more calories than your body actually wants or needs. Before you get a second serving or give in to a giant dessert, just wait a bit and enjoy a glass of water or a cup of tea. If you're still hungry a half hour later, then you truly didn’t eat enough and need more food, but chances are, you’ll be full. Also, besides your mother when you were 5 years old, no one says that you have to clean your plate!

  4. Write down what you eat. Keeping a food log helps ward off mindless eating and allows you to be more conscious of every morsel. It also keeps you accountable as you are fully engaged with what you’re putting in your body each day. Knowing that you’ll need to write down that pizza crust you ate off of your child’s plate or that doughnut you ate in your morning meeting, you’ll probably think twice. Studies have shown that those of us who keep a food journal are more often at least 7 pounds lighter than those who don’t.

  5. Don’t sip your calories away. Beverages like juice, soda, and coffee drinks, have calories because they typically don’t leave us feeling full. Just one 8-ounce soda or juice can have more than a hundred calories, as well as a frothy, creamy creation from your favorite coffee shop. Your best bet is to stick with water, it’s calorie free and free of charge. Our bodies require hydration; drinking eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day is the recommended daily dosage from many. According to the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering & Medicine, the male body requires 15.5 cups of water per day and women 11.5 cups daily, so drink up!

  6. Sneak filling fiber-rich produce into your meals (and your family’s) by shredding zucchini into pasta sauce, adding mashed sweet potatoes to muffin recipes and topping homemade pizza with lots of veggies.

  7. Stock up on fresh and even frozen fruits and veggies. Fresh is always best. To achieve this, shop regularly to make sure your produce is fresh and that you’re only buying enough to last for a few days. However, in a pinch, frozen produce is great to have on hand. I use it all the time, especially when favorites like berries and peaches are out of season. They require minimal preparation and in terms of nutrients, they can actually be more nutritious than fresh produce that’s been sitting at the supermarket too long.

  8. Put a curfew on the kitchen. Our bodies need three hours to help metabolize our dinners. Because you’re not as active at night, your body isn't burning off the calories like it does during the day when you’re active. That being said, if you usually go to bed at 11pm, try to not eat anything after 8 pm.

  9. Don’t ban one whole food group from your diet. I’m a big believer in balance. Cutting out a whole universe of food, like sweets, carbs, or fat, has never worked for me. I always wind up craving what I can’t have and then I feel like a failure when I cave in. The real key is moderation. Eat what you want, but be mindful of the amount you are consuming.

  10. Serve yourself less. Researchers have confirmed that you can eat up to 20 percent less and feel just as satisfied! So when you’re serving yourself dinner, or any meal, put about 20 percent less on your plate than you think you’ll eat. Most likely, you won’t be hungry for any more food.

  11. Don’t keep the serving plates on the table. Instead, after you’ll fill your plate, put the rest of the food in the kitchen or even pack it away in the refrigerator and then sit down to eat. This way you’re not picking at food or serving yourself seconds just because it’s in front of you.

  12. If you’re at a party or social gathering, don’t stand near the buffet table. If you’re having a drink, have a glass of water before and after the glass of wine.

Eating should be enjoyed, so sit down, unplug, then focus and enjoy your time together around the table.

Bon appetite,

Gabby

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