We've recently gotten some very sobering news about the state of our country's obesity epidemic, and it should serve as a wake up call to all of us that dramatic measures are needed if we are to change our eating habits.
One of the main problems behind the weight problem here in the US is that most of us consume way too many calories. Food is there to sustain our lives, and somehow over all these years, it has evolved into a tool we use for pleasure, over consumption, stress control, and socialization. With this knowledge, we can do certain things to reign in our rampant appetites and control it with unrivaled willpower and a quiet self control.
Most people will tell you that they eat too much because they don't know when to stop eating, or they have an appetite that is disproportionate to the amount of calories they should ideally be consuming. You see, most of us should consume under 2,000 calories per day, in fact, 1,500 is ideal for many body types and sizes, but we end up consuming somewhere between 2,000 and even 4,000 because we are making the wrong food choices.
Not only is the wrong choice of foods the problem, but we don't control our portions, and are used to plates of food that are larger than anyone should eat in one sitting. The second problem is that the foods many of us eat are dense in calories, but not in their ability to fill us up and make us feel full for hours before we need to eat again.
If we could somehow control those oversized appetites though, and retrain ourselves to be fully aware of when we are actually full and do not need to eat any more to sustain life (remember, that's what food is for, not just for pleasure or stress release), then our likelihood of becoming obese will decline dramatically.
So let's talk about a few tricks and tips to appetite suppression that can get you on your way to listening to your body instead of eating before you can even give your body a chance to give the "shut off" signal. The tricks have helped me to shed weight when I need to, and I will continue to use them for life to keep myself in my ideal weight zone, and you can too.
Suppress Your Appetite, Rules, Tips and Tricks to Controlling Your Hunger:
1.) Try listening to a self hypnosis CD daily for a few weeks that emphasizes weight loss. You can buy these very reasonably and they will become your "backup conscience" when it comes to getting to the subconscious reasons and roots of why we overeat or can't control our appetites. You'll be amazed at how quickly a good hypnosis CD will work, and even more amazed at how much less effort it seems to take to stay on track.
2.) Drink water first when you feel like you might be hungry. Researchers have said that many times when we feel what we think may be hunger, it's actually our body telling us we're thirsty. Because of this mistaken sense of hunger, we sometimes will eat instead of drink water.
3.) Carry around some sugarless chewing gum. My favorite is Ice Breakers. It makes me feel like I'm eating something sweet because of it's tasty burst of flavor, and it satisfies somewhat of an oral fixation that many people have by constant chewing, keeping the mouth occupied and taking your mind off of food. And at only 5 calories a pop, you're not expending much of your daily caloric intake allotment.
4.) Stay away from hunger-promoting foods when you do eat. Hunger promoting foods are simple carbohydrates like pasta made with white flour, breads that are white, and any highly processed foods. An example of a bad food for appetite suppression would be pasta with tomato sauce. An example of a hunger suppressing food would be tuna fish with a little mayo.
5.) If you're feeling hungry and you know it's not real hunger, but rather the desire to be drinking or eating something, try making yourself some hot tea or even some coffee. I've found that an excellent alternative to chocolate sweets for me has been coffee with cream. It satisfies that sweet craving because I sweeten it with artificial sweetener (preferably the natural alternative stevia).
Coffee also seems to have somewhat of an immediate appetite suppressing quality to it, although I can't say it might not increase it a few hours later, as some people seem to think.
6.) Fiber, fiber, fiber! Each meal should include ample fiber. This could be in the form of whole grain products or fruits or vegetables - eating a large spinach salad with low fat dressing for lunch and dinner is a fantastic solution to this. A tiny bit of olive oil or another omega 3 fatty acid rich food can also help keep you fuller longer. It has to be one of the good fats though to work this way, and omega 3 is the best one out there now.
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