How to Change Your Eating Habits For Good
Have you ever felt desperate to change your eating habits but genuinely felt like you couldn’t?
It’s common for people to try changing certain eating habits only to end up right back at the beginning with an empty bag of chips on their lap before dinner and a sense of guilt for the rest of the night.
This might be a common experience but it doesn’t have to be! You CAN change your eating habits FOR GOOD just by following these 5 tips.
Stop trying to change everything at once and just start with ONE habit.
For most of us, trying to drink less alcohol, drink more water, eat more greens, make sure we have breakfast and meal prep every Sunday just isn’t realistic, it’s overwhelming. More isn’t better here.
So write down a list of all of the eating habits you want to change and choose ONE. Focus on it until you have completely conquered it and feel comfortable with your ability to sustain the change and then move on to the next.
This way you build on the success of the first and so on.
There is always an initial event that triggers you to eat a certain food or make a certain food choice.
For some of us, it’s environmental. You eat the same snacks each day and when it’s time for that snack you become ravenous. Timing is your trigger here.
For others, it’s more emotional. You’ve had a rough day at work and you’re stressed out. So you come home and turn to food as a comfort for your emotional state.
It’s important to understand your triggers (and there may be multiple) as many of them can lead us to overeat and overindulge. Figuring out why you eat what you eat may sound like overkill but it’s this awareness that enables you to change the behaviour.
So, you want to kick these long-standing eating habits because you want to lose weight? Want to feel better? Move better? Sleep better?
Cool, have you ever thought about how that habit may have been HELPING you?
Most of these habits are there to help us cope with our emotions and make us FEEL better about something (relieve stress, cure boredom, fill a void). Food may feel like a magic emotional fix in the moment but it isn’t helping you solve the real problem.
This isn’t a long-term solution and you must find other ways (exercise, therapy, reading, socialising, walking etc.) to cope with stress, anxiety and discomfort.
Whenever anyone attempts to overcome or change a poor eating habit, cravings are inevitable. They come on strong, they come on often and they make you question everything.
These moments might be tempting… but you are still in CONTROL at this point. You can decide what you’re feeling and how you want to respond to the craving.
By pausing in these moments you give the craving a chance to leave and give yourself the space to feel the emotion behind the craving and let it PASS. Next time you feel yourself in this position, PAUSE and take stock.
All of the above is great but without action it’s practically useless. You can’t change the way you eat unless you change your actions with wiser choices.
Once you have decided on the eating habit you want to change, choose an action that will help you break your current patterns and get you there. It could be something as simple as removing yourself from the room for 1 minute or meal prepping every Sunday.
Your actions may seem silly to others but if they work for you, they work for you.
Breaking eating habits isn’t an easy process, many of these habits are formed over very long periods of time and can be tough to crack. But with these steps, you can be confident in making change, FOR GOOD.