If you are serious about weight loss and lifestyle changes, one of the first areas you need to look at is actually your kitchen as the room itself, and how everything is displayed, can be part of your problem. What you buy at the local supermarket and hopefully, the health store and the farmers market too, also has a role to play because obviously if you only bring health-giving whole foods into your kitchen, then you are not going to have so much temptation.
6 ways to ensure your kitchen is not preventing you from losing weight
1. Your kitchen needs to be functional, welcoming and tidy
so that you enjoy being there to make healthy meals and snacks for you and your family. Don't let the counter tops become dumping areas for everything that everyone brings into the home. Clutter makes it harder to function but clutter also leads to stress which in turn raises those cortisol levels in your blood and increased hunger. So first and foremost, get your kitchen organized, including a designated table and chairs for sitting down for meals rather than eating on the run, wherever and whenever. If you are not focused when you are eating, you could eat up to 15% more than you should.
2. Look at the size of your supper plates
and the proportions that you dish up. The same size proportion can look lost on an extra large plate but will fill a smaller one. And talking of those portions, they should be largely made up of veggies with just a small amount of meat or fish. For a rough idea, a portion of meat should be the thickness of your thumb and the size of your clenched fist. Not that big, I am sure you will agree but don't worry, you can make up for it with the fresh veggies or an enormous salad. Serve up a suitable serving on your plate and then put any leftovers away in the refrigerator so that you are not tempted to help yourself to a second and even third helping as you might be if there was a serving dish right there on the table in front of you. That said, it is a good idea to keep a bowl of veggies or salad on the supper table for additional, safe, healthy helpings.
3. Did you know that bright lights can stimulate the appetite
and encourage you to eat faster? So when you have finished the preparation of your meal, turn down the lights to a comfortable level for the actual meal itself. Bright lights also raise those stress levels again and we know what that can mean.
4. Then we come to beverages
. By all means use a large glass when you are drinking pure, filtered water several times a day but if you are serving other beverages, use smaller glasses and mugs. Try and cut down or cut out on any sweetened drinks.
5. When doing your grocery shopping
, buy a good selection of fresh fruits and openly display some of these in an attractive bowl on the counter top so that, whenever you feel tempted to eat, there is something healthy right there. Fruits that stay fresher and even taste better when kept at room temperature include oranges, grapefruit, mangoes and tomatoes. Keep the rest in the refrigerator and top up your display as necessary during the week.
6. Out of sight is out of mind
so, if you must have cakes, cookies and candies in the house, hide them away where they are not easy to get to. Just the sight of tempting food can release dopamine
which is that brain chemical that can intensify a craving. Instead have a glass jar with healthy snacks like raw nuts, seeds, wholegrain crackers, pieces of dark organic chocolate and all types of dried fruit for such moments of craving.
So back to basics and get your kitchen working for you rather than against you in your quest for weight loss and healthier living.