Fitness Challenge Nutrition Tip #4: Eat Smaller Portions

Eat Smaller Portion

One of the healthiest countries in the world is Okinawa. The traditional Okinawan diet consists almost exclusively of fresh, unprocessed foods. But that is not the only reason for their high level of health. The Okinawans have a saying that goes like this “Hari Hachi Bu”, which means “80 percent full.” The idea is that you never stuff yourself. Instead of eating until you’re full, you eat until you are not hungry.  This takes practice and discipline but the benefits are significant.

Most of us are in the habit of eating until we feel full but science has proven time and time again that systematic under eating prolongs life. The idea is not to deprive yourself but rather just to eat a little less than you might be used to. It really isn’t that difficult…  All you have to do is to make a conscious effort to take smaller portions.

To start, try using a smaller plate for all your meals.  This makes it seem that there is more food on the plate.  Research shows us that by doing this, you will automatically eat less.

Most entrées at restaurants are oversized. Try sharing one entrée with someone else or only eating half and taking the rest to go.

Replace large smoothies with small ones. Replace a 12” sandwich with a 6”, etc.

Remember, instead of eating until you are full; eat until you are no longer hungry.

This tip’s challenge is to: Make a conscious effort to eat a bit less at every meal. (Kids, this doesn’t apply to fruits and vegetables. Don’t skimp on those. It applies to things like macaroni and cheese, french fries, potato chips, ice cream, cookies, crackers and sugary cereal.)