Eat what you want. It seems so simple. So obvious. But for many of us, this isn't as easy as it first appears. Especially if we've struggled with our weight and been on countless diets that have overridden our intution.
How many times have you stood in front of the open refrigerator or stared at a menu and thought, What should I have? What do I want?
Figuring out what you want to eat and then eating what you want can be key to living the slim and healthy life you desire. But it takes some practice.
Why Should You Eat What You Want?
So, why am I suggesting that it's okay to eat what you want when most diet books forbid such behavior, instead prescribing what you should eat? When the voice inside your head is telling you it's "bad" to have that piece of pizza or candy? Here's why…
- If you don't learn to responsibly and joyfully indulge your cravings, you'll consume lots and lots of calories trying to substitute for what you really want and still not be satisfied.
- Once you eat what you want, you can relax and stop. You will have filled your need. (Provided you're eating a mostly balanced healthy diet, you're not letting yourself get too hungry and you're not living on lots of processed food - which will totally mess with your hunger signals and cause you to overeat!)
- When you eat what you really want, you'll most likely be happier and end up slimmer because you are not denying yourself. You are not punishing and depriving yourself. You are satisfying your true desires.
I believe you can eat what you want, provided the portion size is reasonable. (This isn't permission to eat with reckless abandon. If you're eating sweet, fried and high calorie foods in large quantities every day that's a whole other story!)
So, while you can eat what you want, you just can't eat lots of what you want all the time if you want to be slim & healthy! And when you eat slower and take the time to really savor what you eat, you'll discover that you don't need a whole lot to be satisfied.
How to Figure Out What You Want to Eat
So, before diving into that plate of several day-old cookies staring at you from the lunchroom counter or mindlessly munching your way through that bag of slightly stale potato chips, pause and ask yourself, "Do I really want to eat this?" You may discover that you're just eating it because it's there or because you're bored or because it's a habit to have a cookie every afternoon.
Pause, take a deep breath and think about it. Ask yourself, "Is this what I really want? Is there something that I would rather have?" Perhaps, a handful of dark chocolate covered almonds? Or a fresh-from-the-oven cookie, even if it means holding out until you have time to bake the cookie dough you have stashed in the freezer?
Sometimes, what you really want to eat will take a little effort, but it's usually worth the investment of time and/or energy required to get it.
Enjoy and Indulge without Guilt
Once you have figured out what you want. Eat it without guilt. Savor it. After all, eating is one of life's great pleasures. Delicious food isn't bad, wrong, evil or sinful. Let go of the regret. Lighten up. Have what you want and don't beat yourself up about it. If you aren't getting pleasure from your indulgences, what's the point?
Remember, it's all about balancing your love of delicious food and desire to be slim & healthy!
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*PointsPlus® and SmartPoints® calculated by Simple Nourished Living; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc. All recipe ingredients except optional items included in determining nutritional estimates. SmartPoints® values calculated WITHOUT Weight Watchers Zero Points fruits and vegetables using the WW Recipe Builder.
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