By Heather Nicholds
Figuring out how to stop overeating is a huge challenge for a lot of people. Junk foods are addictive, we eat for emotional needs, and portion sizes have gotten out of control so that we often aren't sure just how much food we really need.
But there are some simple things you can do to reduce overeating. The most important thing to do to stop overeating is to cut all the processed junk food out of your diet.
I know that sounds harsh, but chips and cookies are full of addictive substances - salt, highly processed sugars, oils and flours and scary chemicals - that urge you to eat more even if you know you're not hungry.
The best trick to use for cutting out junk food is to figure out what your cravings are and replace them with healthier alternatives. If you need some ideas, take a look at this article on comfort foods vs. food cravings
Once you've cut out junk foods, you should find it so much easier to avoid overeating since you won't have those addictive substances interfering with your normal decision-making process.
Emotional eating is another huge cause of overeating. If you feel like eating is tied up with emotions (stress, guilt, punishment, reward), check out these tips.
Even if you work through all that, it can still be tough. I often make meals that taste so good, I have to remind myself not to eat too much or I'll wind up totally stuffed! Not that you have to worry too much about overeating healthy whole plant foods, but it's no fun to have a belly so full it hurts.
If you need help knowing what proper portions should be, check out this article on healthy portion sizes.
These are 10 strategies that have helped me figure out how to stop overeating:
Now, remember that you don't have to be perfect - I'm still working on some of these things. The important thing is just that you start somewhere. Pick one or two ideas that will have a big impact for you, and work on them. Once you make something a habit, you can work on taking more steps in the right direction.