4 Mindset Shifts for Weight Loss
Mindset is another piece of weight loss that I've seen make a dramatic improvement in patients' success. If you feel like you've been doing so many things right and aren't losing weight, try some of these mindset shifts that can help you modify habits and look at food in a new way. In this post I talk about 4 mindset shifts to make if you're trying to lose weight.
There can be many reasons for weight gain and you can read about that in my blog 9 Underlying Causes of Weight Gain.
#1 Mindful Eating
Many of us, myself included, don't always pay attention to what or how much we're eating. We're busy multi-tasking, using our phones, checking emails, or watching TV when we should be paying attention to our food.
Mindful eating may be helpful for weight loss, emotional eating, and binge eating. Practicing it requires you to slow down and pay attention to your food so you become more aware of what you're eating and how it makes you feel. By becoming aware of these things, you can start to change your habits to promote weight loss more easily.
Practice mindful eating by:
pausing before you start and appreciating your meal
chewing thoroughly and eating small bites
avoiding distractions while eating
noticing how you feel while you eat and stopping when you're full
noticing how the food makes you feel physically and emotionally
#2 It's Ok to Leave Food on the Plate
Some people have been raised to clean their plate no matter how full they are. They may think it's wasteful to not eat every last bite. This habit may cause you to overeat, eat more calories than you intended, or cause indigestion because you're stomach is too full. If this is something you struggle with try using a smaller plate. You'll naturally put less food on your plate, eat less and not feel deprived because you can see you've eaten everything. If you're still hungry you can always go back for seconds.
#3 Pay Attention to Why You're Eating
We don't always eat because we're hungry. We eat for a variety of reasons including comfort, stress, boredom, fatigue, and procrastination. When you find yourself wanting to eat or snack ask yourself "why." Be honest with yourself but don't judge. What are you trying to get from the food? Is there anything you could do in that moment that would give you what you're looking for instead of food? Try playing a game, reading a book, calling a friend, going for a walk, or snuggling with a pet instead.
#4 Nothing Is off Limits
You may be accustomed to look at food as "bad/good," but food is either "healthy" or "unhealthy." Food is also more than nutrition for us. It represents connection, love, comfort, and pleasure. So give yourself permission to eat what you want. You're human and sometimes you want to eat unhealthy food. It's normal! Don't expect yourself to be perfect all the time. Use the 80/20 rule: aim for healthy eating most (80%) of the time and anything goes some (20%) of the time. Restricting yourself too much can backfire.
In this post I talk about 4 mindset shifts to make if you're trying to lose weight. These mindset shifts may help you modify habits and look at food in a new way. They include mindful eating, it's ok to leave food on the plate, pay attention to why you're eating, and nothing is off limits.
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