Monday, February 23, 2009

Surviving Those Servings

Did you know the sugars our bodies don’t use, turn to fat? Yes, our bodies get energy from sugars so when we’re feeling a bit sleepy and leaden at work, a small sweet pick-me-up can do the trick – but if you’re thinking sugar only gives us energy, think again. The body will take what it needs from the sugar you’ve eaten, and then what’s left over turns into fat. That means more calories, more difficult calories to get rid of. So think about taking a ‘bite’ over a ‘bar.’ A piece of cake is too big, a piece of hard candy is better.

And speaking of portions, we all know that serving sizes in American restaurants have pretty well crossed the line into the realm of the ridiculous these days. So decide before you walk through the cafe door, how much of something you’re going to eat. I don’t mean obsess about it, but have a plan. When you get your order, ask the server for a to-go box right then. Then basically cut the order in half: half the entrée, half the veg, etc. You’ll have plenty to eat and you’ll have a second meal to carry home for later!

I know this can be a bit awkward and perhaps too intimidating to do if you’re on a date. So think instead about ordering from the appetizer menu. Ask the waitperson to bring it when he/she brings your date’s entrée. That way you won't be sitting there with your dish getting cold well before your date gets his. It’s just another way to keep the portions down.


Anonymous said...

Thank goodness for this blog I have been eating like an absolute vulture lately. Stress and eating go hand in hand. The more stressed the more carried away with the eating. How in the world do you cope with work related stress without acting out with food?
--Disgusted with Self

The Sugar Plum Fairy said...

Hey Anonymous - you are right, stress eating is one of the WORST enemies we face in our battle with food. Don't feel alone. It's so easy to reach for a comfort we know when work has us pulling out our hair. Scientifically, stress depleats the body of energy, so our body is looking for something to replace that: fat and sugar. Eating makes us feel good - at that moment. But try to remember that in the long run, overeating will just add to the stress, not relieve it. Exercise, meditation, anything to help us relax and feel pleasure can help alleviate stress without adding in a secondary element like weight-gain. Meanwhile, check out my blog entry of January 15th, "Hunger Brain," for a bit more on this topic. And hang in there!