Struggling with leaving food on your plate when you have had enough to eat!!
Do you struggle with leaving food on your plate when you are full? Do you keep eating when you are full and then feel sick later from eating too much?
This has been a major issue for many people and we believe this has come about by children being constantly told, when they are growing up to eat everything on their plates. They may also have been brought up in a family where there wasn’t enough food on the table. Their parents may have struggled financially and did not get enough to eat.
Children grow up being told by their parents or primary carers things like:
- “What about the starving people in Africa (or wherever)”
- “Eat everything on your plate or you won’t get desert”
- “If you don’t eat everything on your plate you won’t grow up to be a strong boy or a healthy girl. etc etc”
- “It is not right to throw away food”
Habits and Beliefs
Habits and beliefs are handed down from one generation to another. For example, grandparents may have been brought up in the Depression where food was scarce creating fears in the family, around lack of food.
When you think about it, a baby is born with an inbuilt food control mechanism, whereby they simply stop eating when they have had enough. The parents then override their baby’s inbuilt system, due to their own anxiety and fears about food as described above worrying that their child may not be eating enough quantity of food.
We have all know what it feels like on those days when we are hungrier and other days when we do not feel hungry at all. This is especially so for both babies and children when growing up. There are times when children experience a growth spurt and they will be very hungry and then the next couple of days they may not feel like eating.
We also sometimes confuse hunger with thirst. So it is important to ensure that we drink at least 1.5 to 2 litres a day. If you are prone to over eat, next time you think about eating something, wait and drink a large glass of water. If, after 10 -20 minutes, if you are still hungry then have your meal.
So what can I do to help myself?
Well start by just leaving a mouthful of food on your plate. Then when you discard the food that you don’t need, remind yourself that it is ok. Remind yourself that there is plenty of food in the world.
If you find that friends and family try to deter you from your new habit, don’t take any notice. Discard it anyway. Do this as much as you can at every meal. Do this even if you are eating a snack. The more you do stick to this new habit the easier it becomes.
Send us your feedback as we would love to know how you go.