3 Simple Steps to Rewire Your Relationship with Food
Are you a slave to your appetite?
Throughout life we learn patterns of behaviour and connection to food that serve our emotional needs rather than our need for nutrition.
We celebrate our lives by drinking and eating. We drown our sorrows with food and alcohol. We eat when we are bored. We crave for food at habitual times of the day and resort to food in times of anger or stress. There are ‘foodies’ who take photos of it and others who obsess it, they’re thinking about what to have for the lunch while already eating breakfast . Many of us reward, punish and comfort ourselves with food too.
We may blame our grumbling stomachs, but it is really our brain that is at the root of the way we relate to food. For those of us that are already victims persistent cravings, a food addiction or are challenged by yo-yoing weight, rewiring our brain with a healthier relationship to food and eating is necessary if we wish to create change permanently.
Research into how the brain learns tells us we can train our brain to change impulses and urges. We all try to find the motivation to go to the gym and start yet another diet, but according to studies, people who make commitments to themselves to get healthier, choose better foods, lose a little weight or get fitter numerous times every year. (Clients in my clinic admit that they try at least 20 to 30 times a year to commit to these new habits). Research found with the attempt to lose weight people admit that they try and fail at least 3 to 4 times a year.
To truly succeed at habit change in the long run, requires that we change the way we think of food, find more connection and compassion for our body so that we wouldn’t want to harm our body with excess poor choices.
My three simple steps to start rewiring and reprogramming:
- Become mindful of food urges and choices over the next 72 hours. Curiosity is the key to awareness and awareness is the key to choice-power.
- Chew more slowly with every mouthful. Research shows that the neurochemical mechanics of the brain will mean when you chew more, you’ll eat less without thinking about it. You will naturally feel fuller faster because the act of chewing causes the hunger hormone to reduce and the satisfied and full feeling to increase.
- Every time you have a craving or urge for excess or an unhealthy choice, simply take three deep breaths and roll your eyes clockwise slowly, then anti-clockwise. The strength of the craving will naturally decrease.
By doing these three steps you’ll begin the process of interrupting the neural connections causing the habitual responses to food and emotions.
A great way to start is also to do my stress eating quiz which will help you determine the starting point. The quiz results are personalised with ideas to begin to take control. https://www.thepotentialist.com/stress-eating-quiz/
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