Ask anyone to lead you to the one place in the kitchen that contains the items that will make him or her gain weight, and they will be led into a containment housing food. This could be the fridge, the freezer, the larder or simply a cupboard containing bags of crisps. Either way when a person thinks about gaining weight they think about food.
I am on a seafood diet – I see food and I eat it
It is this understanding that food is responsible for the extra padding around your waist, that forces people to go on a diet. Diets are just miserable affairs and this is why I have searched high and low for a different means of keeping weight under control. If Brian Wansink, the author of Mindless Eating, was to lead you towards his space in the kitchen that contained the items that would make him gain weight, he would lead you to the cupboards housing his glasses and his plates.
Don’t dig your grave with your own knife and fork
In the blog post The Mindless Margin I explained how most of do not realise if we have eaten 50 calories per day or 500. Brian Wansink refers to this as the Mindless Margin – the area where we can slightly over eat or undereat without even knowing. A lot of your eating is based on habit and I would like to share one of mine. Each morning when I wake up I make myself a bowl of Muesli. I choose muesli because I think it is good for me (although I have no clue if it actually contains more or less calories that Chocolate Cheerios). I pour my muesli into my white bowl and then eat until the bowl is empty irrespective of how full or empty my stomach may or may not be. I have never realised it before, but this bowl is huge. Just simply removing the bowl from the cupboard and replacing it with a much smaller bowl will help save your 100 calories per day. Now even the people lacking in willpower can surely manage this feat?
The best way to lose 100 or 200 calories per day is to do it in a way that does not make you feel deprived
We are terrible at estimating when it comes to our food. Not only do we tend to over serve ourselves, but an incredible 92% of what we serve is devoured. Wansink has carried out detailed research that shows that people eat 20-25% more when they serve the food using larger pieces of kitchen equipment such as bowls, plates and glasses.
So start to visualise less by serving your food in much smaller pieces of equipment. Start slowly and work your way into it. Take my lead and replace your cereal bowl with a smaller one and you will find that when you have finished you will not feel hungry. This is because your eyes visualise a full bowl irrespective of the size of it. This is especially true if there is nothing to compare the size of the bowl to.
Visualising less is the surest way to lose weight and it doesn’t matter how much of your favourite food you eat, what a great way to lose weight.
I pretty much have the ideal Body Mass Index (BMI) for my age, weight and height. But I am still not happy with my body. I gather fat around my belly and when I write for long periods of time I get a silly red indention where my fat crease is. I call this my fat line. Over the years I have tried various diets in order to lose this, but the results are always the same. It starts of exciting and interesting but then I crave the food I am forbidding myself to eat. Understanding that I can satiate my appetite by eating less, just my removing certain food containers from my kitchen is a revelation. The simplicity of the idea is ridiculous and this is why I wrote this post.