How do I keep myself from overeating?
1. Define overeating
What does it mean to you? Define it. For me overeating means:
- Eating when I’m not hungry (especially in-between meals)
- Eating a bigger portion than is required for the body
2. Find out the root cause why you overeat
You could try to write it down. Or perhaps self-reflect to find out the root cause. For me, after self-reflection through meditation, I realized there were 3 main reasons:
- In the past whenever I was stressed, my habit was to turn to food – hence I could eat/snack even when I wasn’t hungry. To top it off, the more I felt stressed, the more I felt I should reward myself with something nice – which led to over-indulgence.
- Fear of hunger
- Maybe it’s a natural human instinct or maybe it’s a cultural habit. Either way, due to this fear, there was always something to eat in-between meals so that I will never feel hunger.
- I’m greedy about the taste, looks and smell. 🤤 So, if there’s plenty of food that looks and smells really good, I’d like to try them all.
- Sometimes out of greed, I’d order too much food which brings about guilt and then I’d force myself to finish as much as I can.
- I chase the happy feeling that comes with great-tasting food. This leads to overeating as well.
3. Eliminate the root cause
Based on your own reasons for overeating, take action to get rid of the root cause. For me, that meant meditation, self-reflection and some research:
- Getting rid of stress
- This is easy. As I started meditation, stress was the first thing that reduced so much – that there is no need to use food as a stress relief mechanism anymore.
- Getting rid of the fear of hunger
- It took me a few years of meditation to even realize I had this irrational fear. But once I’m aware of this fear and how false and unrealistic it was in my current situation, it was very easy to discard the fear through meditation.
- Reducing greed
- This is still work in progress, partly because I’m not ready to completely let go of the greed quite yet. What has changed though is that I don’t order too much food now – so I eat just what I need.
- Before eating, I’d also stop to ask myself this question – is it my body that is hungry or my mind that is hungry? If the answer is my mind (usually is) – I’d just decide not to overeat.
- From reading online I found out that the sensory pleasure that I was chasing from great-tasting food – reduces with each bite. This meant that even if I were to eat a lot of delicious food, I won’t be able to get back the same happy feeling that I had from the first few bites. This knowledge was helpful for me to reduce overeating.
I hope this helps. I’m also dropping a video link below which explains some more reasons for overeating – that hopefully can help you further. 🍀
Thanks so much for reading. 💛😊