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Comfort Eating (part 1)

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Heh. I put part 1 as I will probably end up mentioning it again.

I have a litle interactive thing for you to do tonight. 🙂

Firstly, I want you to get some paper and a pen. Go on, I’ll wait.

(note: Get off your fat ass and get some paper.*)

Got paper? ….. I’m not continuing until you do.

Now? You do? About bloody time. Good Let’s continue 🙂

Right. Comfort foods.

Simply what it says on the label. We want to eat these foods because they comfort us. However, the problem is that comfort foods can be more than just the unhealthy foods that we see everyday. a.k.a chocolate, crisps (chips), french fries (chips!) and burgers, pizza, cakes, etc. Sometimes comfort food is “normal” food.

What makes a comfort food? Is it the high calories? Is it the “I shouldn’t be eating this I’m so naughty.” or is it the connections we have to it? Well, in reality it’s a little bit of all three. The connotations of eating or doing something we shouldn’t plays back to the simplest of human psychology. I can’t have it, so I want it. That’s why restrictive diets that completely cut out “bad foods” don’t work! The body wants what it can’t have.

Fair enough, if you don’t like chocolate, don’t eat it problem solved. But if you’re the chocolate nommer of San Diego then we’re in a bit of a pickle aren’t we….

Anyway. What I want you to do is think. (OOOooh tough I know, but don’t hurt yourself!). Think. What’s your guilty pleasure? Is it roast beef? Chocolate? Hummus? Rice Pudding? Coconut? Peanut flavoured soup. Write it down.  Is this food one of your compulsive eats? Doesn’t matter if you think of more than one, write them down on seperate pieces of paper and after we’re finished you can do it again if you want. (It may help if you do). Again, knowledge is power.

Right. Think about how this food makes you feel. Question why? Explain why. Ask Why again?Let me offer an example as a support. A comfort food for me is Chocolate. (Baring in mind I haven’t eaten chocolate in three days, I’m going to go insane if I don’t have a little nibble of some soon….)

Okay so Chocolate  makes me feel happy. Why? It tastes nice and I associate it with a treat. Why? Because when I had a good day at school, my mum would treat me to a chocolate bar. Chocolate was a treat, therefore I want it all the time (slight exageration) to emulate those feelings reinforced from childhood. Understand? I hope it makes sense. Another reason? Often when I’m on my period (sorry guys) chocolate was given to me in an attempt to cheer me up/make me feel better. Does it work? No, however, this reinforces the IDEA that it might.  Yes?

The IDEA that we are going to enjoy this food is a comfort to us.
I’m going to follow with another story of my childhood. xD

When I was in primary (elementary) school, my gran and mum used to take me to a little cafe sometimes called “La Sparenza” (if you can translate this for me in the comments that’d be grand). I used to get a filled roll (barm, bun, dunno what you call ’em) for lunch. The whole cafe used to smell like chicken tikka and that was was I would get on this roll. Chicken Tikka. The oddest thing about this chicken tikka was that it was pink! Not red, not reddy pink, bright pink! PINK. HOT PINK.  But it was so lovely. Even today I can barely remember the dusty white flour from the rolls cloudying up my fingers, the sweet chewy taste of the chicken tikka, the smell of my gran’s coffee, but I would still love to taste that chicken tikka again.

One day not so long again I went back to La Sparenza to get a filled roll and looked around for my chicken tikka filling. However, I couldn’t see it so I asked the woman behind the counter.

“Oh! Did you stop serving chicken tikka?”

To which the woman looked at me in confusion before pointing to a mouldy-brown coloured filling with a few lumps of chicken sticking out of it.

“It’s right here.”

Well, needless to say I was gutted. They changed the recipe. They ruined my chicken tikka, and to this day I have never found my lost pink chicken tikka filling…. 😥

However, the principal is the same. We want to emulate those feelings of comfort and safety we found as a child, especially with stressful situations, oh I’ll come to that in a later post. Don’t worry!

 

Anyway, once you discover why you eat these things and why they bring you comfort, you can enforce new foods in a similar way, such as salad or healthier foods. Maybe even remove the temptation to eat these foods. However, I should prolly point out it is NOT a good idea to cut out comfort foods altogether straight away. If you stop completely you’ll yearn for these foods and end up overdoing it. No, the trick is limiting it, or making space for it by exercising or cutting back on some other luxury. At least, that works for me. I substitute sweet things with my weightwatchers jelly. It’s sweet, comforting and at only 10 calories, I can have 19 more before I eat more than the calories in a chocolate bar….. given that I can only eat three at a time, that’ll be a laugh.  The trick is finding the foods that work for you.  I stress the importance of this. If you have to eat three pounds of  ham and a packet of cheesy wotsits, chances are, you’ll be better eating the cheesy wotsits right amirite?

Kind of….. it’s not healthy, but it will stop the pounds creeping up. Well, there is some level of hard work involved here guys. Self control. It sounds like I’m contradicting myself, but I’m really not. Like I said, find your strengths and work to them make it a little easier on yourself by working harder. 🙂

Anyway, I hope that made some sense and you learned something new. 🙂 Later’s taters. x

*If you take offence to this you are acknowledging that you have a fat ass and that my comment was directed at you personally which it was not ;P

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Catching up with Calories

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Welp today was my attempt to get back into healthy eating after several days of shall we say “accidents”? I think that’s one of the difficult things to do, especially on a friday when I have a feeling I may either end up drinking or engulfing chocolate…

I’m done eating for today and with the cupcake situation now under control (distributed amongst everyone who won’t give me any back) I only have one cupcake left. I’m not eating it. I’m sick of the sight and taste of them now. Let me see what did I eat.

 

Breakfast: (260kcal)

Toast and (Homemade) Strawberry Jam = 260kcalories

 

Lunch: (390kcal)

Small Sushi Box  = 300kcal

Dried Pineapple = 90kcal

 

Dinner: (600kcal)

Lasagne = 400kcal

Small chips = 200kcal

 

Dessert: (10kcal)

Weightwatchers Jelly = 10kcal

 

Total: 1160kcals

Given that I’m trying to eat around 1000kcalories a day due to my low (1400kcalorie) metabolism I’d say today was pretty good 🙂

Hey up weekend, I’m bouncing back 🙂

Fast Food

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One thing that really bugs me is fast food. I’m not talking about takeaways like Chinese food or a chippy, I mean McDonalds, Subways, KFC, Burger King, etc. The starchy, greasy fast food that is more convenient than heading home to make a meal for a family of 8. Understandably if you’re making food for a family of eight than yes, you’ll want convenience over taste and a little fast food now and again isn’t that bad but I’m talking about eating it everyday.

About a year ago, I didn’t know how to cook, even a little bit. Well, I could make noodles and scrambled egg on toast but that’s hardly a range of meals. Learning how to cook is daunting but it’s a good pay off. It’s often a good idea to cook for yourself and someone else as you’re not likely to want to make a big delicious meal that is wasted on yourself.

Anyway, I kind of want to have a rant at fast food so here goes. You walk into a fast food “resturant” it is decorated with garish bright decorations to quieten the children which are dotted around the place like they’re built in with the walls. The “Happy Meals”?  Sure, these places are guilty of bribing children with toys in order to get them to eat the food. But that’s how they sell. They keep people in jobs and keep families fed. It’s a sad truth that you can avoid. All you need to do to change this is stop eating this food for two weeks. Seriously. STOP EATING FAST FOOD FOR A WEEK. Once it’s out your system, the next time you try it, don’t add any salt.  I did the exact same thing. The food is bland, tasteless and the addictiveness will have no appeal.

Take McDonalds for example. The average fries are around 200-400kcalories. Take an asda’s ready meal, relatively healthy in comparison, aroudn 400kcalories. Notice something? How long will these fries keep you filled up? Ten, fifteen minutes? How long does the ready meal fill you up? Well, it’s a meal. It should stop you being hungry for around three (3) to four (4) hours. If not, you need to make your portions smaller till they do. 🙂

I think one of the reasons why people enjoy fast food so much is because it has so much salt in it. But wait, we’re trying to be healthy you say, we’re trying to limit salt. Yes, this is obvious but, all humans are born with an addiction to salt. Think about it. We have evolved through situations where salt and sugar can be limited and this abundance of food we’re currently “suffering from” was not always the case. In order to make sure our bodies get enough salt and sugar, it needed to be able to keep the body taking it in regardless of nessessity. There may be lots today, but it cannot guarantee the same case tomorrow. It’s all about storage.

It also cheaper right? Well not exactly. It’s fast. That’s the general appeal. As far as I’ve seen for £3.99 you can buy a McDonald’s happy meal to fill you up for twenty minutes (that’s 400kcalories for the fries, 400kcalories for the burger equaling 800kcalories) or you can get a asda’s microwave ready meal for £2 and wait twenty minutes more to go home and cook it. All in all, weight loss is about patience.

Another sneaky trick is the “have it your way” trick. What do you think is so popular about KFC or Subway? Oh I’ll have a sub with lettuce and salad and a little more onions and this will justify the mayonnaise…. Bread itself is heavy in the carbs. Too much can be wreck the diet. But by thinking “I’ll just have”, invites more “I’ll JUST have” untill you’d be cheaper (calorie-wise) just taking the fatter option!

As for people who eat fast food and stay skinny. Damn your high metabolisms 😉

One last thing: NEVER SUPERSIZE. I don’t care how healthy, how much cheaper, how hungry you are. NO. Just no. There is no excuse. You cannot complain about your weight and stick in a bucket of fries and half a cow of burger. NO NO NO NO NO. End of. No ifs, no buts, no coconuts. I’m serious. Now, fair enough if you’re hungry after a normal one, (not that I’m condoning fast food if you can help it) go buy another one. But if there is food there, chances are you will eat it.

Studies have shown that eating from a larger plate increases the amount you eat by 30 to 40 percent. If you don’t believe it, you don’t have to but I suggest a book called “Mindless Eating” by Brian Wansink. He is in no way affiliated with me and I’m sure he doesn’t even know who I am but this book will change your outlook on food. I’m sure you can find it pretty cheap on ebay or my favourite, amazon.Educate yourself people :3

Anyway, I’ve gone on enough. I hope this information helps a little or at least provides a little food for thought. Thanks for reading and sorry for the text wall 🙂 Thanks guys.