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Mindful eating and keeping weight off

Reason Magazine - Secrets of Weight Loss Revealed!

This review of two recent diet books underscores what most of us already know all too well: while it's easy enough to drop a few pounds for a short while, it's nearly impossible to lose a lot of weight for a long time.

What caught my attention for anyone wishing to apply some fancy book-learning directly to the affected area was this chunk of insight on eating mindfully -- alongside a smart bit of life-hacky weight loss advice:

Wansink’s overarching point is that, when it comes to food, we’re not paying attention. “It takes up to 20 minutes for our body and brain to signal satiation,” he notes, and Americans often finish their meals in less time than that. Instead of internal signals we rely on external cues to tell us when we’re done: Is the plate clean? Is everyone else done? Is there more in the serving dish?

To counteract such cues, Wansink recommends such tactics as using smaller plates (which make portions seem larger), keeping serving dishes in the kitchen (which discourages second helpings), replacing short, wide glasses with tall, thin ones (which make drinks seem bigger), keeping food scraps and bones on your plate (which reminds you how much you’ve eaten), and dividing snacks from big packages into smaller bags or plastic containers (which discourages you from devouring the entire package).

I'm also a big-fan of guesstimating portion with real-world objects. Although, candidly, the last time I ate beef, it was less like a deck of cards and more like the whole blackjack shoe.

[via: Arts & Letters Daily]

brianarn's picture

Mindless Eating isn't just a diet book

Referring to Wansink's book as a diet book is a bit misleading, and somewhat demeaning, IMHO. It's an amazing little book full of great stories that help send home the messages in the book.

My doc recommended it to me about a year ago, and I picked it up but didn't actually start reading it until about four months ago. The simple changes I've put into effect have led to fifteen pounds of sustainable weight loss.

Seriously, having that knowledge made navigating the minefield of the holidays easy. I ate to satisfaction, enjoyed the food, and didn't put on a single pound - if anything, I lost about a pound.

It's a light read, but I tend to only read it while eating, funny enough, so I haven't quite finished it, but it's a great book that I'm enjoying eating and reading my way through. I highly recommend it.




An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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