How to Know If You’re Overeating and Take Back Control
There are many factors that contribute to obesity. The condition, defined as having a body mass index of 30.0 or higher, is a rapidly growing crisis in America in particular, where almost 40 percent of adults and 20 percent of young people are obese, a record high.
Experts on public health say the two biggest culprits are unhealthy diet and a lack of physical exercise.
While the difficulty of finding and affording healthy foods to eat is one reason many people have an unhealthy diet, it’s not as simple as that. In addition to eating the wrong kinds of foods, Americans are eating too much food, consuming far more calories than they can burn throughout the day, which leads to the buildup of adipose tissue. This causes problems for people trying to lose weight by changing their diet.
Even if you successfully cut out unhealthy foods, you won’t lose weight if you’re still binging on relatively healthy ones. That means portion control is a major concern. Read on to learn about some signs you could be overeating, and some solutions to help you stop.
1. You Eat Quickly:
It takes some time for the brain to receive signals from the stomach to let you know you’re full. The hormone that signals you’re sated is called leptin, and it isn’t produced immediately. But many people, consciously or unconsciously, eat so quickly that they’ve already taken in far more food than they need by the time they start to feel full. The solution? Pace yourself, taking time in between bites to have a sip of your beverage, converse with your dining companions, and savor your food. You’ll enjoy your meals more this way, and be less likely to stuff yourself.
2. You Get The ‘Meat Sweats’:
The ‘meat sweats’ is a term describing the perspiration that occurs after eating a large amount of beef, pork, or poultry. It’s caused by the thermic effect of feeding. Your body has to work harder to convert protein into fuel than any other food. While protein is good for you, especially if you’re exercising, it’s often accompanied by fat. If you get the meat sweats frequently, increase the ratio of veggies to meat in your meals.
3. You Clean Your Plate Every Time:
If your eyes are bigger than your stomach, you tend to end up with food left on your plate. That’s healthy! But the human tendency toward finishing the job often forces us to keep eating long after we’re full, doggedly shoveling down food in order to achieve a sparkling clean plate. Try keeping Tupperware on hand so you won’t waste your leftovers, and you won’t feel as guilty about leaving some food on your plate.
4. You Feel Heavy or Sleepy After Lunch:
While it’s natural to get a little drowsy after a big meal, if you feel like a nap every day after your lunch, you’re eating too much. This is the result of eating too much of heavy foods. Your body isn’t designed to keep moving after you eat massive amounts of starch and fat. Take the hint from your body and eat smaller portions, otherwise you’ll find yourself being less physically active, thus having a compounding effect on your weight gain. One trick is to schedule activities that require alertness after lunch, so you’ll have a reason not to pig out.
5. You Always Eat Alone:
If you’re always eating on your own, it may be because you feel ashamed at the amount you consume. This is a sign that you’re eating too much. If it’s not convenient for you to eat with other people, then try to moderate your portions so they don’t exceed what you’d feel comfortable eating in front of a prospective romantic partner.
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