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Eliminating 200 + Daily Food Decisions: Key to Maintenance

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Ian Brown has published a terrific article today in the Toronto Globe and Mail, highlighting the reality that most of us make over 200 food decisions a day.

And explaining (see 3:45 p.m.) the brain science which makes it so hard to sustain good food choices all day long.

And reminding us that 200 extra calories a day means 20 extra pounds a year.

It doesn't take many poor food decisions to generate that extra 200 calories! Thank goodness the Spark Nutrition tracker makes it possible to track today what we're going to eat tomorrow . . . which helps eliminate a whole lot of "on-the-fly" decision making.

Gonna have that brownie? No choice. It's already been decided what I'm going to eat today. And entered into my food tracker.

Engineering "no choice" is the best choice to sustain weight loss.

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
PHOENIX1949 11/18/2012 3:54PM

    Enjoyed the article. Thanks for sharing.

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DBCLARINET 11/17/2012 9:41AM

    Cool article! A little bit ago, I decided to do 30 days of a super-strict Paleo diet. It was actually the easiest thing to stick to because basically anything I didn't make for myself was just not an option. There was no decision to make. In fact, I think that's part of the reason why I stick to that diet as a template; fewer decisions.

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SYNCHRODAD 11/10/2012 11:11AM

    Thank you! That writer is funny, and full of insight. The battle of (not) eating is far more complex than I thought.

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NANCY- 11/8/2012 6:18AM

    This average North American got hungry reading the article. :)
Already deciding what is on the menu for the day, does help with directing our actions.
WTG on engineering success.

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_LINDA 11/8/2012 12:43AM

    Hey!! How did you know I went 200 calories over my limit today??? I am afraid it might not get any better in the next few days. Playing in a bridge sectional this weekend starting tomorrow. Its one long food fest of everything you should never be eating. Great hsopitality in a bridge tourney means trotting all the home baked goodies at every seesion. Offering meals and snacks after the games like pizza, pie and ice cream, you get the picture. Being manager of the club, I have to hang around to the bitter end to make sure everything is locked up and the alarm set properly. Yep, my food descisions will be like, ginger cookie, nanaimo square or date sqaure??
Timbit or fudge square. Oh boy. Just a feasting bonanza for someone who never cooks or buys this stuff :PP Self control? Moi? Stressed with lack of sleep, pressing health issues and looning deadlines knida does lower one's resistance to the good old comfort foods..
Thanks for sharing this great article!!

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PHEBESS 11/7/2012 9:47PM

    I find I do best when I have certain meals set (like bkfst and lunch) and then know approximately how many cals I can have for dinner - I tend to rebel against too strict an outline........

But that writer is hysterically funny!

Comment edited on: 11/7/2012 9:53:22 PM

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 11/7/2012 8:23PM

    absolutely true.

I do track ahead and it helps immensely.

And some days I just know I'm going to have issues so I'm extra careful. Like today - so I stayed extra low on the sugar (27g) and didn't even eat any fruit.

So not only do i apply this to overall calories but macronutrients, too...

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TRAVELGRRL 11/7/2012 7:33PM

    It was hilarious! This is a guy I would love to know.

At first I was skeptical about the number of decisions but it could be possible. I'm going to try to check it out tomorrow. However, I eat at home 99% of the time so it's only a matter of choosing between an apple or a pear, an egg salad sandwich with lowfat mayo or turkey. Either way they are NOT between a good choice and a bad one!

Thanks for sharing the link.

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ROOSTER72 11/7/2012 5:04PM

    Great article. Thanks!

It also reminds me that successful maintainers have 'menus' - go to meals that they eat most of the time, know the nutritional value of.

95% of the time I have the same breakfast. I have about 5 lunch choices. Dinner time is probably about 10 different meals. I might change it up with different spices, different fruits/vegetables etc, but the main ingredients are the same.

The idea of taking the decision making out of the equation is good.

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DDOORN 11/7/2012 1:30PM

    Great article, thx for the share!


ps...sorry too long in catching up...sounds like your flus have flown? :-)

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DALID414 11/7/2012 12:25PM

    Since I started working (since Friday actually) I've been packing left overs for lunch AND inputting it in my food tracker for the next day, to avoid any lunch catastrophes!!

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SLENDERELLA61 11/7/2012 12:20PM

    Brilliant blog! I'll go check out that article, too. Sounds relevant to my life and my struggles from time to time. It is frustrating that I can make good decisions 23 hours and 50 minutes per day and blow it in 10 minutes or less!!

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CRYSTALJEM 11/7/2012 11:23AM

    You know, I just may have to fork over for the G&M - I've used up my 10 free articles already (or more accurately, my DH did!) :)

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REDSMIRK 11/7/2012 11:09AM

    Thanks for the link, a good read!

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LADYJ6942 11/7/2012 10:57AM

    Great article, thanks for sharing. I don't track ahead but I track current. If I want the brownie I ask myself how hard I want to work in the gym and decide from there.

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SLIMMERJESSE 11/7/2012 10:36AM

    Great info. Thanks!

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Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.

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