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Thread: Bad Eating Habits
11-17-2008, 09:00 PM #1
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Bad Eating Habits
Here's another article I found...
Everybody has bad habits, especially when it comes to eating. Some of us snack incessantly while we work. Others are prone to guzzling a beer or three every night then crashing out on the couch. More than a few of us enjoy midnight snacks -- usually delicious junk foods like devilís food cake, cheddar cheese or salami slices. But even if you're a generally healthy guy, chances are you unknowingly engage in habits that are detrimental to your health and your physique.
Bad eating habits seriously eat away at your health. They can make you fat, sluggish and generally unhealthy. But cutting them cold turkey could be traumatic, at least to your psyche, so weíll explore good alternatives to some of the most common bad eating habits. Follow these suggestions and transform your bad habits into good ones.
Drinking alcohol on an empty stomach
A bottle of Anchor Steam harbors about 150 calories. Even a watery bottle of Bud Light contains 110 calories. Just a few drinks can account for a quarter of your recommended daily calorie intake. Beer -- and alcohol in general -- is packed with calories, and if you consume it on an empty stomach it will go straight into your blood stream and get stored as fat. Added to that, it will make you overeat by increasing your insulin levels, which causes the levels to plummet even lower, making you crave food you probably donít need.
How? Your body sees alcohol as a poison and tries to clear it from your body as quickly as possible, interrupting your normal glucose production. Low blood glucose makes you hungry, which makes you eat more. Have a few drinks on an empty stomach and youíll be gobbling up everything in sight in an attempt to get your glucose levels up. But it wonít work until the alcohol is out of your system.
Bad eating habit solution: Eat before you drink.
Have a bite to eat before you take a sip of beer or booze. Food in your stomach will keep alcohol from being absorbed too quickly. If you donít have time to eat anything, drink a glass of milk. The protein in it may slow the absorption of booze by as much as three times. That means your glucose production wonít be affected as much and you wonít get as hungry. Youíll eat and probably drink less, and, therefore, consume fewer calories.
Eating a heavy meal before bed
A nice big meal -- or even a satisfying snack -- will put you right to sleep. Itíll also go straight to your gut. While proof that eating before bed directly causes weight gain is debatable, if you eat a large meal that is high in carbohydrates before your body goes to rest, chances are that your body will not burn them all for fuel. Also, unless you havenít met your daily caloric requirements, eating a large meal before bed can add unnecessary calories to your diet. When you sleep, your body goes into ďrepair and storeĒ mode, so if you are not active enough throughout the day, your body may turn the food into fat.
Bad eating habit solution: Eat veggies and lean protein before bed.
Late-night hunger could be your bodyís way of telling you that you are tired and you need sleep -- not food. Make sure you eat enough veggies and lean proteins during dinner. High-fiber veggies and lean proteins will make you feel full and theyíre low in calories. Pack them in and youíll feel full for hours.
If you didnít stuff yourself with veggies at supper, and you didn't consume your daily caloric allowance, go ahead and have a snack that is high in protein, as this macro nutrient helps your body repair itself. Choose lean proteins, such as chicken breast or cottage cheese, as they have far fewer calories than fatty meats and cheeses. Lean proteins and vegetables are less likely to be stored as fat because your body will use the nutrients in them to nourish itself.
Drinking fruit juice
When you were a kid, mom was always telling you to drink your juice. Itís good for you, right? True, pure fruit juice has lots of vitamins, but it also has a lot of sugar, usually more sugar than the fruit it came from. And sugar energy, when itís not used immediately in the body, is stored as fat. Drink a few glasses of fruit juice and youíll accrue calories like a snowball collects snow when it rolls down hill.
Bad eating habit solution: Eat the whole fruit.
Eat the whole fruit instead. Fruit is filling and has less sugar than fruit juice. Plus, it contains more vitamins and nutrients than pure juice. It also contains fiber that will fill you up and cause the sugar to slowly enter your blood stream, which means that your body will be less likely to store it as fat. The next time youíre craving a glass of Tropicana, grab an orange instead.
You compulsively snack on chips, wasabi rice crackers and Cheetos while you work. The habit might help you burn through projects, but it also helps your body store fat. Plus, most snacks are super salty and wonít help your hypertension. Any way you look at it, snacking all day long is bad for you.
Bad eating habit solution: Manage your snacking.
Donít bring the whole bag to your desk. Instead, take a small amount of your snack and put the rest away. Or, simply buy single-sized bags so you donít consume a big bag by eating mindlessly. Another tip is to keep track of your snacking. Every time you reach for the bag, mark it down or make a strong, mental note of it. This will help you realize exactly how much you eat during the day. It can be sobering and may provide the motivation you need to drastically cut back on snacks. It may also help to break your three big meals into five smaller ones, which will keep your metabolism revved and will help you feel full throughout the day and could help you kick snacking altogether.
time to break free:
Bad habits are hard to break, especially when they involve food. A few simple substitutions, however, can turn your bad habits into good ones. Over time, your diet will become lighter, healthier, more nutritious, and you'll feel and look your best. So kick those habits; itíll be good for you.