For example, what do you see first when you open your cupboards or fridge? Is it fruit and veg, or biscuits and crisps? Ok you may have the healthier options, but are they buried away? You are 3 times more likely to eat the first food than the 5th food you see! So get healthier options to the front – or even better get rid of the unhealthy options, if they are not there you cannot eat them. In your fridge, why not experiment with moving your veg and salad from draws at the bottom to the top shelf and less healthy food into those draws. It is a simple but easy tweak which can have an impact on food choices.
Another thing that can work to help keep some food out of sight is to wrap it in tin foil rather than see-through cling film. Likewise, where suitable wrapping healthier food in cling film can again influence your decision. If you have made a cake, biscuits or desert but do not want to be stuck with the temptation of eating the surplus over the next few days then why not pop the remaining portion in the freezer.
It may not just be the obvious food items which are sabotaging all your good will. Foods such as cereal which are often not considered ‘bad’, could be subliminally playing a part. If cereal boxes are kept on top of a unit rather than behind cupboard doors research shows that the owners weighed 21lb more than those who kept the cereal in cupboards. So consider what you have out on view.
No to nibbling
The next potential hazard is mindless munching when preparing food. It might be tempting to nibble while you’re preparing meals for family and friends. But it’s all too easy to work your way through almost as many calories as the meal itself. Avoid the temptation by keeping your mouth busy with a piece of sugar-free chewing gum and before you reach for something, stop and check how hungry you are.
It’s all in the size
Have you cooked a healthy meal from scratch but not getting the results you want? Then check out the size of your plates and bowls. Plate sizes have increased massively over the past 30 years, as has our waist line. If you are someone who feels cheated without a full plate, then try swapping your 28cm plate for one that is 22cm. It is a simple way to eat less calories without realising. Also plating up the meals on the plates, rather the different food out in different serving dishes means you are less likely to help yourself to seconds.
Finally, why not compliment all the good food options with a bit of sneaky exercise thrown in as the evening meal is cooking? Think as it as the perfect starter, here are a few options to get you started, but let your creative juices flow.