The principles of bariatric eating can really be boiled down to all the important lessons your mom taught you in kindergarten:
These concepts are so elementary, yet so powerful. However, if you're like most, these lessons were long forgotten on the playground.
It's time to revisit them now!
Chew your food
This is one of The 10 Commandments of Bariatric Eating!
Chew each bite of food 20-30 times. This will prevent anything from getting stuck in the gastric band.
Warning: It's going to feel very, very strange to chew so much!
Warning: You're going to actually taste your food so much more when you eat this way!
Put your fork down between bites
This bariatric eating strategy will force you chew longer and to sloooowwww down. Both assure nothing gets stuck in the gastric lap-band and that you don't overeat.
Don't talk with your mouth full
Mom had it right here too.
Your mind can only be in one place at a time. So if you're talking and eating at the same time, chances are you're focusing on what you're saying and not what you're eating.
The end result?
You're more likely to overeat!
Sit down when you eat
Doing so forces you to eat mindfully.
When you eat while standing over the sink or grab something as you're walking through the kitchen etc., you're less likely to have awareness of how much you're eating.
Eating while standing doesn't feel "official" enough for some reason and thus it's easy to convince yourself you "really didn't eat much."
When you sit down to eat, there's a defined beginning and a defined end to the meal. This is useful in preventing overeating.
Newsflash: Calories consumed while standing "count" as much as calories consumed when sitting! :)
Cut your food into small pieces
Taking small bites is another important principle of bariatric eating that will prevent food from getting stuck in the gastric band.
Consider eating with baby utensils.
You can only fit a small amount of food on a baby fork or spoon. This will force you to take small bites!
It's not necessarily the minutes at the table that cause excess weight...
...it's the seconds.
Remember that your pouch only holds ~ 1/2 cup - 1 cup of food. There's no room for seconds in there without the risk of stretching your pouch!
Mom was wrong about one thing
She said, don't play with your food! I say...play with it!
Look at it, smell it, eat it with your fingers, ooohhh and aaahhh with it. In other words, enjoy your food!
All you have to do is look at a child playing with his/her food to understand they're actually having fun eating.
When you only have a small amount to eat, it's extra important to enjoy every bite.
Play with your food at your next meal and tell mom I say it's ok!
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