How to Overcome Overeating

By , By Joy Bauer, RD, of Woman's Day
Remember last year when you woke up the morning after the annual family holiday party feeling bloated, stuffed and sluggish? Well, not this year! I’m telling you right now that you can splurge without gaining weight—you just need to follow this five-step detox plan to a T to flush out the sugary evidence in 24 hours flat. Read it, memorize it, and follow it anytime you’ve had one too many helpings.

STEP 1: Get in the right mindset

The last thing you probably feel like doing is exercising, but starting your day with a 45-minute brisk walk is key: You’ll sweat off uncomfortable bloat. And, thanks to those mood-boosting chemicals that your body makes when you exercise, you’ll be in the right frame of mind to make healthy food choices the rest of the day. Taking charge and exercising first thing will also help stop one day of overdoing it from turning into a week of overeating—which is one of the main ways a splurge leads to weight gain.

STEP 2: Eat protein and potassium at breakfast

Having a solid morning meal helps prevent overeating the rest of the day, but not all breakfasts are created equal: Research has consistently shown that including protein is key. That’s because protein (think eggs, lowfat cheese, yogurt) has the most staying power, so you stay fuller longer and wind up eating less overall. One study found that dieters who ate eggs for breakfast lost more weight and had more energy than those who had a starchy bagel with the same calorie count. Potassium (in most fruits and vegetables) is equally important in getting rid of the day-after puff, since this mineral offsets the bloating effects of sodium. A few of my favorite protein-potassium powerhouses:

- Waffle with Ricotta Cheese and Banana: Top a whole-grain waffle with ½ cup part-skim ricotta cheese and 1 sliced banana.
- Cottage Cheese with Cantaloupe: Stuff ½ cantaloupe with ½ cup lowfat cottage cheese.
- Smoothie: Combine ½ cup nonfat yogurt, ½ cup milk (skim, soy or almond), ¾ cup fruit (any kind), and 3 to 5 ice cubes.

STEP 3: Go green

One recent study by Swedish researchers found that unsweetened, caffeinated green tea is very effective at helping satisfy your appetite. Like water, it fills you up with liquid volume, which will take the edge off your hunger. So sip a warm mug or chilled glass of plain green tea with breakfast, lunch and dinner (for a total of three a day). Green tea can also slightly rev up your metabolism, so you eat less and burn more!
Click here for more tips on how to overcome overeating!

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    Do you follow any of the tips listed here? What tips do you have for preventing and/or overcoming overeating?

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    interesting. the walk I can do. Report
    Good ideas. Brushing my teeth has been helpful too. Report
    I am trying to get my food balance,so that I have the energy to exercise and to lose weight. Report
    I am trying to get my food balance correctly, so that I have the most energy when I need it. Report
    Very good artical. I have got into a habit of eating breakfast after morning mall walking whole wheat toast or oatmeal with yogart. Report
    I can't walk for 45 minutes so that isn't going to help me. I use a smaller dinner plate to side in my portion control and it also keeps me from over-eating. I have a "little" serving of my trigger foods so I get the taste without over stuffing myself and do not keep trigger food in the house until I need them for my recipe and then buy the smallest package of them. Report
    Great ideas. Will consider them. Report
    I started brushing my teeth immediately after eating a meal to stop myself from munching up snacks between meals. If I'm on the go, a few handfuls of wasabi peas I keep in my purse does the trick. Anything with a strong, lasting flavor will usually work. I go for savory hot items, mints and gum with sweeteners of any sort just leave me wanting more after the flavor has gone. Report
    Awesome ideas thank you so much for sharing. Report
    I have sipped two cups of hot green tea already this morning. Report
    I'm laughing because I was able to check off each of the first three items on the list!! What a difference SP has made in my life this past year and a half. I actually have adopted healthy habits! Report
    I feel I'm already on track....gluten-free waffle with PB and banana is my typical breakfast!! Report
    I like the article very much. Will have to try some of the sujestions you give to help with the overeating problems etc. Thank You Very Much. God Bless You and Have a Wonderful Week. Report
    Great article to encourage one to get back on track Report
    Some really good ideas-and I like the 10 reasons your body thinks it's hungry. Report
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