I am a foodie. I go to bed thinking about food and wake up thinking about food. I hate the feeling of being full but love to eat. I love to read recipe books and love to look at menus. However, I am not a food- a- holic. You see, there is a difference. I love food. I respect food. I love the variety. I love the creative combinations. It excites me. Because of this, I savour it. I do not gobble it. Most people just eat their food without thinking about it, treating food as a noun not a verb. Food gives us life, it heals us, it nourishes us, it makes us feel better. With all that said, let me explain why I have been analyzing this lately. You see, of all my friends who are foodies, not one of them are overweight. They may dream and talk of food all the time, but you would never know it. There is a lesson in this. If you really think about the item you are eating, slowing down while you eat it and savoring the bites, your brain has time to process that you are eating. You eat most of the time to satisfy your cravings, not to fill you stomach. If we ate to only fill our stomachs, we would not eat so much. It is our brains that tell us we need chocolate or that delicious Krispy Kreme, not our stomachs. So then what happens when you give in and get that little piece of heaven? Most of the time we just gobble it up without really thinking about it. Then, the food is gone before you even really enjoyed it. Does the brain even realize that you ate it and thus satisfied the craving? I have been exercising this little thought of mine and it has made a huge difference in how I approach my cravings. You see, chocolate is a definite need for me but I have found that I really only need a little to satisfy this need. I get 8 Giradelli dark chocolate chips, the larger ones and eat them very slowly (only 40 calories), one by one, consciously tasting each bite. It takes a while, but in the end, I have had my fill. The craving would be gone. If I just grabbed a handful and popped them in my mouth all at once, I would still be tasting the same thing as I would taste with just one in my mouth and would have swallowed down all 40 calories in one swoop and of course would need more. Conversly, if I ignored the craving, it would build an build until I ate several candy bars at one sitting. My wonderful friend Miss Molly brought me a box of my favorite treats the other day. I love these and rarely buy them because they are so horrible and trashy but they are my weakness, Zebra cakes (I know, this is horribly wrong on so many levels to like these, I am not perfect!) . I quickly opened the package and started to eat one when the phone rang. As I listened to the person on the other line and hung up, I realized that I ate my treat and didn't even really taste it. I was so mad! I wasted 180 calories and didn't even enjoy it. I quickly ate another with vigor and later had to have my daughter hide them from me. How often do we just gobble it up? American's are famous for this. Other countries take hours to eat a meal. It is an event. A verb. We get it done easily in under 15 minutes! So, this is a bunch of rambling thoughts, but try it out. Take time to taste. Savour your food , it is meant to be enjoyed by your brain, not just your bellies! You may just find that one doughnut or one piece of chocolate is enough and that you really can control these cravings. Think about your food. We do not become overweight by eating one cookie. We become overweight by eating the whole plate!
Random thoughts by the self-proclaimed Enlightened Homemaker