Mindful Eating: Portion Control and Enjoying Dessert

by Marsha Hudnall

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Portion control and mindful eating | Strategy for successHealthy Eating: When Cake Is Your Best Choice

If you’ve been reading our website for any length of time at all, you’ve heard us talk a lot about normal eating, appropriate portion sizes (the plate model) and making healthy choices. But, if you’ve really been listening, you know we don’t believe there’s any such thing as a perfect eater. In fact, the more relaxed you are about making choices and opting to take into consideration your wants and needs around food and eating, the more effective you’ll be managing your weight.

We all know life is about choices, but that doesn’t mean we always have to be right or perfect. In this context, choosing well means eating food for many reasons. Like, because we’re hungry, or we need more from a particular food group, because we like the way something tastes, or we simply desire an emotional payoff. Yes, ‘normal eating’ is sometimes about emotional eating. Human beings eat for emotional reasons every day, and a great percentage of them are not over-fat.

Normal eating involves acceptance, eating for pleasure, and trusting yourself. Most often it isn’t the food that is at issue, it’s our reaction around what we choose to eat. If you possess a dieter’s mentality you probably frown upon the odd piece of cake. Unfortunately, depriving yourself that pleasure can often lead to eating insane amounts of cake – out of shame, guilt and an all or nothing approach to what you perceive as a forbidden food. Remember, one piece of cake never made anyone fat. It’s what you do after you eat that one piece of cake that matters.

Translation? Choosing a piece of cake, and eating it mindfully with your full permission, can actually be a very healthy choice in the scheme of things. No kidding! Only we can know what is appropriate and normal for each of us. And how great would it be to feel normal again?!

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