Take into account that everything takes practice and so when trying to lose weight it’s up to us to be mindful of what brought us to the weight we’re at right now. When the communication between our stomach and our brain has a 20 minute delay, it can cause us to overeat if we’re not mindful – resulting in weight gain.
Experts say it takes 20 minutes for the brain to register we are full. If we eat quickly, specially while doing something else like sketching a new concept, we end up overeating because we are unable to receive the “fullness” signals in time or simply ignore them by paying attention to something else. By the time we realize we’re in fact full, we have overeaten and given our belly more than what it can hold comfortably.
Our stomach is the size as our fist – make a fist and look at it, that’s how big your stomach actually is. Picture what you had for dinner yesterday and position it right in that fist, how does it look? Does it sit comfortably or will your fist need to be much larger? Notice that the stomach does have the ability to stretch and boy, can it ever stretch – returning to its normal size of course – but keep in mind that what changes is your appetite.
Your stomach can pretty much hold almost anything you put in it, a quarter or more of extra food that it would normally comfortably hold, and by doing so you enable it to hold larger portions over and over again – tampering with your “appetite thermostat”. When you begin to eat the amount that would normally keep you satisfied, you are now unable to feel satisfied because you’ve reached a point where the system thinks it needs more as a result of it having gotten used to getting more, your “appetite thermostat” has been tampered with.
When we’re mindful and present of our food consumption, specially how we’re feeling while eating it, we gain much more insight into the queues our body gives us and when we’ve really had enough. Tying your emotions to your food choices may very well be a vicious cycle, we may never be able to fill a void of a certain feeling and continue trying to fill it with food only to realize the goal of losing weight is that much further away.
By practicing an 80% full stomach-brain connection, we are allowing ourselves to connect with our inner “computer system”. Being mindful of how we’re feeling and where we’re at satisfaction-wise. By stopping at 80%, the brain gets a chance to react by receiving leptin, the hormone that tells our brain the level of satiety we’re at, at its natural pace and learns we’re really close to our 100% mark – the mark of complete satisfaction. This communication lets our brain know how full we are. When we eat quickly, these messages are unable to keep up and we end up feeling overly full and at times sick due to overeating.
It takes practice, if we’ve been filling our stomach to 110% we will be sure to experience a sense of unsatisfaction when consciously stopping at 80%. As we get comfortable with our stomach adjusting and resetting our appetite to its original state we will begin to feel satisfied sooner and, naturally, losing weight in the process.
Your turn – Have you used the 80% full rule in the past, how have you worked your way into it?diet weight management weightloss