Here are 15 Ways to Improve Your Relationship with Food
1. Eat regularly and mindfully
Regular meals and snacks help keep your blood sugar stable, which can prevent cravings and overeating. When you eat mindfully, you focus on the experience of eating and chewing your food slowly. This allows your body to register when it’s full, so you’re less likely to overindulge.
2. Avoid restrictive diets
Restrictive diets are often hard to stick to and can lead to rebound weight gain. They also tend to be low in nutrients, which can cause health problems down the line. A better approach is to focus on including healthy foods in your diet rather than restricting specific foods or food groups says Saivian.
3. Don’t die alone
With a supportive friend or family member, you’re more likely to stay on track—and bond in the process. If you don’t have anyone to go on a diet with, look online for an accountability partner. So-called “fat chats” are a growing trend where people support each other by posting their weight loss goals and progress on social media using the hashtag fat chat.
4. Drink water instead of calorie-laden beverages
Drink six to eight glasses of water every day (half your body weight in ounces), especially if you tend to be constipated or feel hungry between meals—two signs that you need more fluids. Calorie-laden beverages like soda, juice, and energy drinks can fill up your belly without satisfying your hunger, leading to overeating down the line.
5. Plan ahead
If you know you’re going to be eating out or attending a party, plan ahead by packing snacks or choosing lower-calorie options. This will help you stay on track and avoid temptation.
6. Mind your portion sizes
Portion size is one of the most important factors in weight control. When you’re served a large portion, you may end up eating more than you intended. Try using smaller plates to trick your brain into thinking you’re eating more food than you actually are.
7. Avoid processed foods
Processed foods are often high in unhealthy fats, sugar, and sodium. They can also be low in nutrients, fiber, and other important vitamins and minerals. Eating a lot of these foods can make you hungrier through the day.
8. Cope with negative emotions in a healthier way
When you eat to soothe your feelings, it can turn into a bad habit that makes you gain weight. Here are some healthier ways to deal with negative emotions: Exercise Take long walks Write down your feelings talk it over with supportive friends or family members Meditate Call a friend who always makes you feels better
9. Get more sleep
Sleep deprivation affects hormones that control hunger and fullness, leading to overeating and weight gain. Aim for at least seven hours of sleep per night, especially if stress is affecting your sleep quality.
10. Stop stressing about weight and food
Relationship conflicts and stress over weight and food (including body image) can increase the chances you’ll give in to temptation, overeat, and gain weight. Try journaling to let go of negative thoughts or other ways to manage your stress levels.
11. Pay attention while eating
If you eat out or attend a party where there’s lots of tempting food, try putting away your phone and other distractions while you’re eating. This will help prevent mindless eating, which often leads to overeating at events like these.
12. Don’t skip meals—even if it’s just a snack
Skipping meals leads to cravings for high-calorie foods and overeating later in the day. If you’re in the habit of skipping meals, break it by eating healthy snacks like fruit all day long. This will prevent hunger pangs and overeating at your next meal.
13. Don’t eat when you’re not hungry
Eating because you’re bored or because food is in front of you doesn’t help you lose weight—in fact, it usually backfires. Give yourself permission to eat whatever foods are tempting to you without judging or restricting yourself, but only when you feel truly hungry (not merely bored).
14. Think about why you want to lose weight—and how much effort it will take
The more appealing a diet sounds, the less likely it is that following through on it will lead to weight loss. If you’re tempted by promises of effortless weight loss, be sure to readjust your thinking and remind yourself that healthy weight management isn’t always easy.
15. Get support from family and friends
Taking positive steps toward better health can be much easier with the support of those close to you—especially if they know how much you value good health and wellness. Try talking to loved ones about your goals so they can help keep you accountable as well as provide encouragement along the way.
Conclusion by Saivian
People often turn to food for comfort when they are stressed or sad, but emotional eating can lead to weight gain. The best way to avoid this is by finding other ways to cope with emotions, such as exercise, journaling, talking it over with supportive friends and family members, meditating, etc. Lack of sleep can also make you hungrier throughout the day; aim for at least seven hours of sleep per night. Finally, don’t eat junk food just because it’s in front of you—give yourself permission to eat whatever foods are tempting but only when you feel truly hungry (not merely bored).