Most of us eat until we are uncomfortably full. And the simple reason for this is our lack of awareness. In our day to day life, we’re barely conscious of how much food we’re actually putting in our body.
Even if you’ve never had an eating disorder, it’s very likely that eating too much food and lack of restraint and portion control are negatively impacting your health.
Here’s the truth: Our bodies require much less food than we believe we do. There’s a fine line between being satisfied and being stuffed. Right from our childhood, we are trained to expand our stomachs to fit the massive portions that we are served and as a result, we start believing that being stuffed equals being “full.” Whenever you sense an uncomfortable tension in your stomach, chances are you have crossed the line and had too much.
One key insight that we all must remember is that consuming excess food i.e. unnecessary calories, always leads to discomfort and weight gain. This is why it’s crucial that we learn controlling our portions to maintain our weight and sustain greater energy levels.
The ancient practice of Ayurveda recommends eating two cupped handfuls of food at every meal. If you bring your hands together side by side making a cup, scoop up rice, dry beans or legumes and put the amount into a bowl. Measure out how much you scooped with a measuring cup and that will tell you how much you should be eating to feel satisfied, but not full.
Just keep this in your mind — whenever you sit down for your meal, you want to fill up your stomach two-thirds, while leaving one-third for digestion. Your stomach churns ingested food during digestion, and if there is no room, you will experience a tight and upset stomach, and excessive burping or heartburn. If you feel heavy and lethargic after every meal, there’s a good chance it might be because you’re completely filling your stomach.
So today, be mindful and cultivate awareness when you sit down for your meals; just eat when you eat and do nothing else. No TV, no phone, no reading. Let your body tell you how much you should eat, not your plate. Know that it’ll take a good number of days to change your eating patterns, so be patient with yourself as you do this.
Take two cupped handfuls of food on your plate and put the rest in your fridge so you mentally know how much you should be eating. Savor that food and if you still feel hungry, just wait 15-20 minutes. Chances are, you won’t be once that time has passed.