If you have trouble getting full at supper without becoming stuffed, a few tips from Sparkpeople.com might help you fill up without filling out when you sit down for a meal.
Do you have trouble feeling full at mealtime? Do you go from starving to stuffed before you realize it? Well, check out a few tips from Sparkpeople.com before you give up and give in completely!
According to Becky Hand, Licensed & Registered Dietitian, our food choices go a long way in our becoming satiated, or feeling full without feeling stuffed and uncomfortable. Many of us blow right past the point of no return without giving it a second thought until it is too late. But, with a little thought added to the eating process, you may never have to feel that unzip-the-jeans moment at the dinner table again.
It is important, Hand suggests, to eat more low density foods, i.e. foods that contain a low number of calories per gram. But, many of us see such foods as unfilling. However, there are low-calorie, low-density foods out there that can help fill us up without filling us out. For example, leafy greens with a little low-fat or fat-free dressing is a good choice; go for a darker green, like spinach or romaine lettuce, instead of iceberg for a greater hit of nutrients. If you are not a salad eater, try a broth-based soup to start your meal. Of course, eating more non-starchy vegetables is always a good choice at a meal, and they are definitely a tummy-filler! Good choices are cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots and squash. And, at this time of year, it is time to start looking forward to fresh summer tomatoes! Additionally, should your efforts to fill up not quite hit the mark during your meal, have some fruit for dessert.
Should You Have Water with That Meal?
Is drinking water as you eat a good option? Well, drinking water is always a good thing for your body. However, Hand indicates, eating your water is more filling than drinking it:
Research has shown that to reduce hunger and boost fullness, the water has to be in the food. Why? Because there are separate mechanisms in the brain to control hunger and thirst. If the food you eat contains the water, it will stay in the stomach longer while the food is being digested. Beyond that, there is also the psychological component of eating food versus drinking water. When you eat food, even water-rich food, you get more sensory stimulation because you have more food going through your mouth and you’re eating for a longer period of time, both of which help you feel more satisfied with your meal.
When you do drink, however, Hand indicates, water is still an excellent choice. Many people drink beverages all day long out of habit or boredom. Drinking water is a good way to keep from drinking your calories throughout the day. According to Hand, “Both the beverage-drinking patterns and overall health of U.S. adults have changed considerably over the past several decades. In the 1970s, Americans got 6-8% of their daily calories from drinks, but today, 21% of their daily calories from beverages. Not counting what’s in that glass, cup, can or mug may be a major cause of the alarming increase in obesity.”
So, drinking water is important, for both our health and for filling up. But, let’s face it: Water can be a boring choice for some of us. If this is you, visit Sparkpeople.com to get some ideas about what beverages are healthy choices; how much you could/should have each day; and what you should just avoid drinking.
For additional tips on filling up and not filling out, visit Sparkpeople.com and learn more about the effects of fiber, protein, fats and nuts on your efforts to be full but not over-stuffed at mealtime.
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