Diet Tip #2

icecreamAs I’m sitting here eating my nightly bowl of ice cream—nothing fancy, always vanilla with chocolate sauce, walnuts or almonds and maybe whip cream on top—I am reminded of my favorite diet tip. This tip is unstudied. In fact, I made it up myself, although I’m sure there are other longterm dieters who have come to the same happy position.Here it is: When you eat, enjoy it. End of tip. But I’d like to elaborate for those who want to understand how this really works…

Enjoy eating and whatever you are eating to it’s fullest. If you discover that you are no longer loving it, stop eating. The first bites are usually the best anyway because our taste buds get used to flavors and the fun wears off. That is, unless you are drinking wine perfectly balanced with your food, then watch out. But even so, the Mediterranean diet practically requires wine, and that seems to be working really, really well. You can read about the latest celebrated study in The New England Journal of Medicine.

Back to my tip, I’m not suggesting that you stop eating a perfectly good plate of food. The emphasis is not on saying “no” to food, but on saying “yes” to it. Enjoy what you eat, relish it, thank God for it, occasionally go “yummmm,” and you will be more satisfied. Being satisfied, you will find that you actually eat less. I promise. Well, not really. This is a tip, not a rule. Hard and fast rules and eating are not compatible in my experience.

A subset to this tip: do not eat while doing anything other than partaking in conversation with your table companions. How can you fully enjoy your food when the TV is showcasing the depravity of man?

My daughter recently told me that I look unattractive when I eat. This did not offend me for two reasons. First of all, I’ve been a parent for 18 years and have had ample time to be humbled. Secondly, I know she is telling the truth! When I eat, I chew slowly, savoring as much as I can before swallowing. Not like a cow, but more like a chipmunk, I keep the food around, sometimes in my cheeks, so it can come in close contact with as many taste buds as possible.

Did you know that you have 10,000 taste buds? Maybe more or less, depending on if you’re a supertaster, but still thousands. I say, make sure those taste buds are satisfied and they may stop begging for more.