Breaking the Vicious Circle

By Julie Daniluk

To stop making bad food choices, you must begin to distinguish between true physical hunger and a need for comfort. One way to do this is to keep track of how often you eat. If you ate a full meal a few hours ago and your stomach isn’t rumbling, you are probably not hungry. Give the craving a few minutes to pass. This also means you need to know your triggers.

Using a food journal, record what you eat, how much you eat, when you eat, how you’re feeling before, during and after you eat, as well as how hungry you are. Over time, you’ll learn about your eating patterns, which will help you to avoid triggers. If you feel blue and hungry, then munch on a protein-rich, healthy treat such as a cup of edamame (young soybeans) or a trail mix combining 1 ounce each of hemp seeds, hazelnuts and some apple-juice-infused cranberries to sweeten the mix. Eating healthy treats such as these will help discourage you from making poor food-shopping decisions.

Don’t be shy about what you’re doing. Get a friend to try this program with you or ask your family or roommates to avoid keeping unhealthy foods around in order to support your brave move toward health. When stress nudges you towards the refrigerator, call up a friend to help you tune in to what you really need.

Once a week, make a cooking date with a friend, relative or yourself. Whenever I hear people say they have no time to cook, I dig into their schedules and often find that they watch four to eight hours of TV a week. As an alternative, while you prepare soups, stews and snacks on your cooking date, try listening to a recording of your favorite author reading his or her latest book. You’ll be surprised to find just how relaxing this is.

Julie Photo HR 2012

Nutritionist Julie Daniluk hosts The Healthy Gourmet on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN), a reality cooking show that looks at the ongoing battle between taste and nutrition. Her first book, Meals that Heal Inflammation, advises on allergy-free foods that both taste great and assist the body in the healing process. 

www.juliedaniluk.com 
Facebook: Julie Daniluk Nutrition
Twitter @juliedaniluk 

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