Your diet is travelling along nicely until something happens. That ‘something’ is an eating trigger that causes you to overeat or eat inappropriately. Knowing your eating triggers is the first step to overcoming them. Here are some tips to beat one of the four common categories of eating triggers – Sensations.
Sensations are the physiological and biochemical changes that occur in our bodies in response to eating food or being deprived of it. These sensation triggers include; an empty stomach, low blood sugar levels or an unbalanced ratio of neurotransmitter chemicals in the brain.
How to beat ‘sensation’ eating triggers:
Tick the eating habits you’ve already mastered. Cross or highlight the ones you need to work on:
- Eat regularly and avoid skipping meals, which can leave you hungry and prone to overeating.
- Choose foods that fill you up with fewer calories and help level out blood sugars. For example, sources of low glycaemic index (GI) carbohydrates such as rolled oats, yoghurt and grainy bread.
- Include some higher-protein foods including; lean meat, chicken, fish, dairy or beans at lunch and dinner to help you feel satisfied.
- Where possible, try to limit or avoid stimulant foods such as coffee, cola drinks and chocolate, particularly at times when you crave them. This pattern of consumption reinforces the negative habit.
- Beware of depriving yourself too much and eating too little food. This will amplify your sensations of hunger and cravings, which will make you more prone to experiencing the other types of eating triggers.
The key to beating sensation eating triggers is to level out your body’s natural chemical highs and lows.
Remember, keep your eyes on the prize.
By Matt O’Neill, Dietitian - SmartShape.com.au