Bonjour to all of you gorgeous French people! How did your pantry purge go last week? After visiting the health food section in my local grocery store, I was able to find fun kid cereals without HFCS in them, as well as an all purpose baking mix without hydrogenated oils in it to replace the Bisquick in my pantry. Also, I was pleasantly surprised to find one brand of ketchup at my local WalMart without HFCS in it. (It was tough to spot though) There are options out there if you want to give up faux ingredients in your food!
This week, I will be reviewing Steps 4 and 5 in The French Don't Diet Plan by Will Clower. For me, these chapters come down to one basic idea, the French love their food, most Americans love gluttony. A love of food and a love of gluttony are not the same thing and if you can slow down the pace of your meal, you can retrain yourself away from loving gluttony, and towards someone who loves food. Simple yet profound, isn't it?
In order to retrain ourselves away from over-consumption, Dr. Clower has several ideas.
#1: Most Americans have a distorted idea not only of portion sizes, but also of bite sizes. Take smaller bites and thoroughly chew your food.
#2: Most Americans speed through their meals. This week, I was sitting in a McDonald's with my kids. We were just starting our meal when in comes a man. He orders two sandwiches, sits down, and completely eats both of them in five minutes. I watch him get back into his car while I am not only halfway through (and I consider myself a fast eater) Gross huh? It takes about 20 minutes for our brains to get the signal that our stomachs are full, by that time, most of us have already over-consumed. Take AT LEAST 20 minutes to finish your food. Portion out your plate into quarters if you must and eat one quarter every 5 minutes, put your utensils down while you chew, only pick them up again when you are completely finished chewing and have swallowed. Take your time with your food, and your brain will get the message your stomach is full with much less food consumption.
#3: Plan on seconds by serving yourself less than you think you want. Take 20 minutes to eat this smaller portion. Chances are, in 20 minutes, you will be completely satisfied with the lesser amount, but if not, it is okay to have seconds, just again serve yourself less than what you think you want, then again take your time.
These lessons are going to take lots of practice for me this week. If you decide to practice with me, let me know how you're doing, I will need the encouragement! Next week, I will discuss my progress from this week, as well as review Steps 6 and 7 from The French Don't Diet Plan. Please join me! Until then lovely French people, a little homework....
To do this week:
1. Make dinnertime a special time. Eat with your family, set the table and atmosphere nicely.
2. Use smaller plates and smaller utensils. Take smaller bites.
3. Serve yourself less than what you think you will want...plan on seconds.
4. Take AT LEAST 20 minutes to eat. Put your fork down while you are chewing (what do I do with my hands then? This is something I'm going to struggle with)
Good luck and don't forget to keep me informed on your progress!