It’s important for everyone to be able to understand the basic concepts of nutrition the question how much are you really eating is very important to diabetics especially in regards to sugars and carbohydrates. It is virtually impossible to overeat a salad, it doesn’t matter how big the bowl is there are not enough sugars for it to be serious. In fact, a salad bowl for two in our house would normally be enough for 10 people in a restaurant.
Even if you think you’re pretty smart about food and nutrition it is a fact that today food manufacturers hide certain foods which make it even more critical that you learn how to read a food label. It’s not just what is in the food in terms of sugar, that carbohydrate content but also portion information. How many others can look at a cream sponge for four people think I can eat that myself? We all fall into the trap of container eating that is weak and soon whatever is in the container. I can’t guarantee that reading a label stop you eating all four pieces of cake, but it will stop you from being unaware what one portion should be. You will also be aware of how many calories you are actually consuming which in itself can sometimes act as a stop measure.
Today buy very cheap measuring spoons measuring cups for both wet and dry ingredients and small food scales. It’s always a good idea to use them sometimes it is amazing how little 50 g of dried weight lentils actually is. Historically a lot of diet books used to give you the pictorial guide to how much you’re eating, in other words, a piece of beef should be as big as a deck of cards. The unfortunate thing about that is the fact you don’t usually have a deck of cards in front of you are sure eating. Accurate measurements are a much better way for you to monitor what you are actually eating.
Another great way of self-monitoring what you’re eating is to keep a journal for two or three weeks. Not only does our appetite generally exceed our calorie requirements quite often diabetics have an appetite control mechanism which is broken. A lot of us for various reasons indulge in mindless eating. We may eat and drink whilst we are watching a ballgame on the television. We are so engrossed in the game that we do not realise how big that packet of peanuts was and they have been consumed in minutes without is even noticing it.
Many medical studies have shown that keeping a food diary with an effective weight loss weight loss maintenance mechanism. Recording what, where, when, why and how much we eat is a fantastic way to give us both immediate and delayed feedback. It makes as consciously aware of what we are eating when but also it can give clues as to why. Not everybody eats when they are hungry.
Emotional eating is something we are all guilty of times. When we were growing up we all attached memories to food and most of these were comforting and it is prevalent in adults to revert to comfort heating when we are stressed. Lots of us have a row with our partner, children parents et cetera and decide to eat a packet of cookies. Seeing what you’re putting in your mouth actually written down in front of you makes it harder to fool yourself. Granted it may not stop you wolfing down those cookies every time but it may make you more aware of the triggers that precipitate that behaviour. If you know what triggers you to comfort eat then you can alter your behaviour if necessary. If you write down the contents that are the calorific contents and sugar contents of a package of cookies before you eat them it sometimes makes you think twice before you eat when you’re not hungry.
Do You really know How much are you really eating?
We have all had that delusional experience where we think we would just eat a handful of potato chips from a large packet! You open this massive bag and it seems enormous, you eat mindlessly in 10 or 15 minutes later without you even realising it the bag is empty. If you have to write down every potato chip trust me there is a deterrent factor here! Writing down potato chip may seem ridiculous but it actually does work.
Some people have great success if they weigh themselves at the beginning as general and at the end. Nothing is more likely to make you succeed with some weight loss than to see progress. If you can actually see you are losing weight are more likely to stick to your plan. Incredibly recent research has shown that Wednesday is statistically the day that your weight fluctuates the least. That sounds a nonsense since reading that a couple of months ago I have weighed myself every day and some days there is a difference of 5 kg or 11 pounds. Strange as this seems, there is less fluctuation on Wednesdays.
Leo also wrote down in his food journal is fasting cholesterol, insulin and glucose levels as well. He said actually seeing those reduce was a very powerful motivator to carry on to cure his diabetes. You may also want to know whether other health issues you have been improving. You may find you have more energy or you are mentally sharper or just feel better than when you started. Definitely self-monitoring your progress will help to your diet plan. I tend to think that by enhancing awareness we reduce unconscious eating habits and reinforce better behaviours.How much are you really eating, is not usually a single answer. You learn other reasons why you are eating as well.