Keeping a Food Diary Programmed Me to Eat Less, Without Trying

In April, I began keeping track of what I eat and the time I eat it.  Not the calories or the fat grams or the portion size, just a simple list of what went into my mouth when.  Over the past several years, my eating habits have drastically changed.  I keep my fat grams under 40-50 a day.  That way I never have to count a calorie or portion size, ever.  I eat a lot of salads and vegetables to get nutrition from them.  The only processed food I eat is some bread, some pasta and the occasional canned soup.  No cookies or crackers or chips or cakes or donuts or candy bars or that type of thing.  My weight has stayed the same the past 4 years with no effort.  But it wasn’t until I began keeping the food diary that I realized the keeping of it unconsciously programmed me to eat the foods and at the times that I wanted to commit to writing.  I found that interesting.

What I would typically do is, before I go into the kitchen, write down what I will have and just leave the time blank until I ate it.  Sometimes if I wrote down, say, oven fried potatoes, I’d rethink it and make a big salad instead.  Just because on paper I made it sound better.  Taking that extra moment to record what i would eat began to reprogram me into making better choices.  Too cool!  Had I known this, I would have begun a food diary years ago.

I love any kind of discipline that doesn’t really take much effort on my part.  Even now, several times a month I will listen to my Reprogramming Your Eating Habits mp3 file and I notice for the week after listening that I eat less and drink a lot more water.  Without having to remind myself to do it on purpose.

Now that’s a new habit I can cultivate.


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