Well, not all of the time. There are some times you need to listen to your mother and other times that her well meaning advice probably should just be left alone.
There are two things that most of our mothers would have said while we were growing up which are not necessarily true, especially if you are trying to lose weight.
Unfortunately when you have been told these two points your whole life, it is difficult to ‘untrain’ your brain as they are ingrained in your eating subconscious.
These two points are:
- Finish your meal
- Don’t snack between meals
My mother still sprouts this at me often.
So why are these statements not helpful when losing weight?
Finish your meal
When you are born and as a young child, you will have a natural sense of satiety. That is, when we begin to feel full, we stop eating. Simple. Simple when you do not have to think about it.
Society has a fondness for chubby ‘healthy’ babies and every mother gets immense satisfaction from a child finishing a meal.
The problem is, often as mothers, we push our children for one last mouthful, one last taste, to finish the plate we have lovingly prepared. Although it is seemingly innocent, by pushing the child that little further, pushes them to lose their natural sense of fullness.
By forcing babies and children to finish their plates, they eat more then they need and they lose that innate sense of when to stop eating. It is lost, and as we all know, it is very difficult to relearn.
The best way to address this point with ourselves and our children is to:
– Put less food on the plate.
– And if the child or ourselves are still hungry, have a second helping.
If using this method you not only address the issue of wastage but you also address the issue of not eating as much. If you pause for a few moments before getting up to have a second helping, then you might actually realise that you feel satisfied and not get more food.
If you are worried that you will feel like you are not eating enough, looking down at an empty plate, maybe try using smaller plates so they appear fuller. This is a very simple trick on our minds.
Do not snack between meals
Again my mother still says this to me. She is specifically talking about sweet biscuits, which is true, but in terms of other healthier options, especially when aiming to lose weight, then this statement is not true.
When we are trying to lose weight, we will have to eat less calories, which often means less food (sorry, it is true!). By doing so, at the beginning of our journey we might feel a little hungry between meals or feel our blood sugars drop.
The BEST way to address this IS to HAVE A SNACK.
Of course, there are snacks and there are snacks. The important point is to choose the right snack.
– Choose a snack which is potentially lower in fat
– Choose a snack which is potentially high in protein
– Choose a snack which is potentially high in fibre
Some good options are:
– Reduced-fat yoghurt
– Reduced-fat ricotta on toast with banana
– Rice cakes with nut butter
– A piece of fruit
– Hummus and vegetable sticks
– A small vegetable soup
By having this snack, you will keep yourself feeling satisfied, with energy and push yourself to the next meal where you will fuel yourself for the rest of the day.
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