A few weeks ago I had a bit on an epiphany. It was after lunch. I had eaten a small lunch so a few hours later was hungry and decided to have some of the nuts my husband had bought.But these weren’t a can or container of nuts. These were “real” nuts. You know, the kind with the shell still on them? There were Brazil nuts, almonds, and walnuts.So I took a handful and started opening them one-by-one with a nutcracker (let me remind you I haven’t done this in years). As I was doing this I realized I was putting effort into eating.
In other words, I had to WORK to get my food. And anyone who has opened nuts with a nutcracker knows that it takes time. With the time and effort it took, after about five minutes I had eaten about only 7 or 8 nuts. But it was just enough time for my body to tell me it was full. I wasn’t hungry anymore so I put the unopened nuts away.Just then I realized that if, instead, I had opened a can of nuts – the ones with the shell already taken off – I would have eaten about 40 of them (or even more) in the five minutes! Think about how easy it is to just munch on nuts and before you know it half the container is gone!
So by working for my food, I ate less.
The same for dinner that night. I had an orange after my salad and pizza (yes, I DO eat pizza!). As it’s winter and I don’t get much Vitamin C, I decided to have an orange. Again, same story. I had to peel that orange to eat it.Okay, I know that’s not a lot of work. But I could have easily just poured myself a glass of orange juice and within 10 seconds be done with it. But by peeling the orange, I had to do a little work. In addition, by eating the fruit itself, I get all of the fiber and nutrients that get lost when processed into juice.By having to do some “work,” I had time to actually focus on my food, enjoy it, and think about where it came from (as it was still in it’s natural state).We just eat so mindlessly today. We need to put little (if any) energy into getting or eating our food. Today most of us just open a box or put something in the microwave. Much of our food is “convenient” so we put almost no effort into it.Now I don’t think you should go out and hunt for your food like the cavemen did. However, I do want to make you aware of how EASY it is today to just pop something in the microwave, open a box, or call for take-out. (Yes, I do each of these myself sometimes, but not all the time).
We need to take a step back and realize that our environment is affecting our weight.
Losing or maintaining weight is not just about eating the right foods at the right times. It’s also about being aware of your environment and how it affects not only your food choices, but your efforts to lose weight.Like I often say: Losing weight is not just about the food. And no, it’s not nuts. But I, for one, will ‘work’ for my food.© Dinneen Diette. All Rights Reserved. Answer and Questions:
[toggle title="Lance"]Hey Dinneen, Okay…first off…call me orange-challenged!! I DO struggle peeling that orange (probably about like opening that nut!) (which I haven’t done in forever, either!!). What a great point though – when we’re working to get our food – it takes time…and in that time – our body processes the food already there, and – voila! We don’t eat as much!! Wow!! So simple!!! I LOVE IT!!!!!![/toggle] [toggle title="Nathalie Lussier "]This is such a great point Dinneen! It’s definitely one thing to be able to grab a snack on the go and munch mindlessly, and another to be focused on “getting at” the food so you can eat it.I guarantee that I eat less durian if I need to extricate it from the shell! Spikes, watch out!I love love love this post and your message. Oh, and congrats on eating real nuts and not those other types of nuts[/toggle][toggle title="Drew @ Cook Like Your Grandmother"]I saw on TLC (or Discovery … or Animal Planet …) a story about polar bears in captivity. Zoo personnel have to put their food in a contraption that’s hard to open. They found that if they just gave food to the bears, they wouldn’t eat it and would sit around listlessly. They speculated that the bears needed
to feel that they were “hunting” their food, or they didn’t want it.I’m not sure how this translates to people.[/toggle][toggle title="Col"]Beautiful post, Dinneen … Magnetic headline and soooo very right-on! Similar thing is happening in my world now as I cook … it takes me an hour or two to cook and it’s a process, not a snatch-n-run thing … eating more healthily and mindfully.xo,
Col[/toggle][toggle title="Dinneen "]Thanks Lance, Nathalie, Drew and Col for stopping by and you’re GREAT input!Amazing how it really IS simple and ‘working for food’ helps one be focused on the food — and thus our body (and our mind) has had time to process that we ate and we become more mindful, and as a result eat LESS.Thanks for your input….love it![/toggle]