6 Possible Reasons Behind Your Tendency To Overeat

6 Possible Reasons Behind Your Tendency To Overeat

Mindless snacking and regrettable binges? This could be why.

We’re all guilty of overeating at times, consuming more than we intended despite our desire to be healthier. But why? Is it simply down to hunger? Here Marina Rösser, top nutritionist and nutrition specialist for the leading fitness app company Freeletics, shares six entirely possible reasons for your tendency to overeat:

1. Plates – Why size matters

“It might sound a bit strange, but give this a thought: Different studies have shown that people who eat from smaller plates tend to eat less than those who use larger ones. Another ‘plate factor’ which might be a reason for your overeating is its colour: if the food and the colour of the plate are the same, people tend to overeat. The reason for this is that there’s not enough colour contrast between the two, which tricks our perception of the portion size. Reducing the size of your dinner plates and choosing the colour wisely to reduce the amount you eat might be a life hack that’s worth trying. Let your plate control your portion!”

2. Snacks – Out of sight, out of mind

“Most people are not aware of how they trigger cravings without even noticing. An example of this is having snacks in clear view. If you put a bowl with chocolate on the kitchen counter and you pass by every now and then, you will automatically trigger chocolate cravings. But it also works the other way around. Just substitute the chocolate for fruit and you can automatically increase the amount of fruit you eat per day.”

3. TV ads – Skip the craving cue

“You’re probably wondering what your TV has to do with weight loss. Actually, there’s one thing that can support you with your weight loss goal: skipping the adverts. Why? Because adverts often show the most delicious foods that do a great job of convincing us we’re hungry – even when we‘re not. Also, if you’re used to nipping to the kitchen for a quick biscuit every time there’s a break in your favourite TV show, it starts to become a bad habit. Be smart and skip the ads.”

4. Eating when distracted – Stay focused

“Ever heard of the ‘mindful eating’ concept? It’s actually very important for weight management, because it counteracts another reason why many people overeat: being distracted. Studies have shown that people who, for example, eat in front of the TV or computer, tend to overeat. They grab their favourite snacks and end up being totally wrapped up in watching their favourite series, that they don’t notice how much they are consuming. Being mindful while you eat can save you a lot of unnecessary calories. Focus on every bite, eat slowly and chew thoroughly.”

5. The post-workout binge – Be realistic about your energy expenditure

“Let’s be honest, who hasn’t pictured the most delicious snack waiting for them after an intense workout? Or used the phrase ‘you’ve earned it’ to justify a post-workout indulgence? We’ve all used exercise as an excuse to binge eat at one time or another and we end up consuming more calories than we’ve actually burned. Eating after a workout is usually encouraged, but you should always try to be realistic about your energy expenditure. Find out how many calories you burn on average, and then try to match your post-workout snack accordingly. It should refill your energy levels and fuel recovery, not undo your hard work.”

6. Using artificial sweeteners – Don’t believe everything you read on packaging

“Artificial sweeteners like aspartame, saccharin, acesulfame and sucralose are synthetically produced food additives that taste sweet while having zero calories. Sounds too good to be true? That’s because it is. Studies have shown that artificial sweeteners have a counterintuitive effect, and can actually cause people to gain weight. Consuming these sweeteners regularly, in diet cola for example, is far more likely to result in weight gain. This is because the brain naturally responds to sweetness with signals to eat even more, resulting in the consumption of excess calories. Instead, why not try natural sweeteners if needed, like honey or maple syrup? Not only will they get the job done, but they also contain some vital nutrients and enzymes for a mini health kick.”

The Freeletics Bodyweight, Running, Gym and Nutrition apps can be downloaded for free in the App Store and Google Play Store. For more information about Freeletics, visit freeletics.com.

 

WordPress Lightbox Plugin