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    SMOKINGUN   6,312
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Environment


Saturday, January 05, 2013

It is surprising to myself how significant our environment is in determining the manner we develop. If you grew up in a family who enjoyed the outdoors, chances are likely you developed an interest in outdoor activities. You developed the attributes akin to the activity your family or peer group participated in. Perhaps you did not directly participate, but you attained the likeliness and willingness to partake in every aspect of the activity. To be a part of this, it may have meant indulging wholeheartedly in the support of the food surrounding and/or in celebrating the activity. Octoberfest may have meant Bratwurst, Baseball might mean hotdogs, movies meant popcorn, and watching football from your favorite chair might have meant beer and wings.

If we narrow the environment down we may identify prompts for triggering a hunger urge. If you always watch TV from your recliner and always enjoy a snack there, you may have identified a trigger. If you always are enjoying buttered popcorn while at the movies, then going to the movies maybe a trigger. Perhaps attending a birthday party means cake and ice cream as a means of celebrating.

Never wanted to believe I needed to eat at the table and not in my recliner. I like eating in my recliner. I eat everything there while watching TV. After persistent urging from my daughter, I have begun itemizing all my food intake and fitness. Wow! Do I really consume this much? Didn't even realize I had been eating. I was watching TV! Moving out of my favorite chair for watching enlightened me to the idea watching TV doesn't necessarily mean I am hungry for popcorn.. I simply had it because I always ate popcorn watching TV.

Made me look at other activities which I enjoy. How many of these involved unplanned consumption of food just because I always had this food while enjoying the activity. I was subconsciously enjoying the food and using the activity as my scapegoat. I can enjoy and do now, watch movies without having popcorn.

Do you find yourself consistently eating/drinking while sitting in your favorite spot. Might be time to look at altering your environment so as not to trigger those habits. It is not an overnight prescription to stopping a habit we learned years ago. After all we learned to sing "take me out to the ballgame, buy me some peanuts and crackerjacks...". Must mean it isn't right without these. What do you think?

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Member Comments About This Blog Post:
IOWAGRAMMA 1/6/2013 10:05PM

    Food, food, food...when I was a kid and we went to Grandma's house: food! When someone died, food showed up like a miracle and after the services, more food! Good times: food! Bad times: food! And when you pair that with someone who likes food--all kinds of it, you end up with a prescription for disaster...or at least weight gain! LOL! Many times it is possible to change our behaviors by thinking through and planning ahead for the event. For us, we always eat at the table. Occasionally we have popcorn in front of the tv (the only kind of snack I can manage). I feel strongly about the tracker helping me to stay focused and accountable--it's about the only thing that actually works for me! Good luck!! Jeannie

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JILL313 1/6/2013 8:27PM

    Luckily I eat my meals at my kitchen table but I know when I used to watch more TV I would snack and eat mindlessly without realizing just how many calories I consumed. Great Blog and a good point you made. We are creatures of habit and I guess that's why so many people overindulge over the Holidays as how can we have Christmas without all the goodies and party food?? Thank you for sharing your well thought out emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon thoughts.



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SANDYW1945 1/6/2013 3:40PM

   
My hubby and I do most of our meals in front of the TV but we have both still lost weight this year. What we have both stopped is the mindless eating. ..but boy I do know that this can get away from you. I love the food tracker. It keeps me accountable.

Food habits are so complicated and so hard to break. We are surrounded by custom attached to food! Can we enjoy a birthday party without cake , Halloween without candy, Christmas without cookies, pies and cakes? Certainly we don't want to avoid those celebrations. They are part of our lives. I can't have wheat (allergy) or sugar (Diabetic) ...so I've learned to enjoy the people. I'm starting to make fun with people my new habit.

You nailed the food/environment connection for sure.

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SPUNKYDUCKY 1/6/2013 3:03PM

    Excellent blog and very true how easy it is to enjoy food as part of an activity without realizing what we are consuming

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STITCH4EVER 1/6/2013 12:16PM

    DH ALWAYS EATS IN FRONT OF THE TV WHILE I SIT ALONE AT THE TABLE. HE FALLS ASLEEP WITHIN MINUTES AFTER HE FINISHES EATING WHILE I CLEAN UP THE KITCHEN AND SET THINGS UP FOR BREAKFAST THE NEXT MORNING. HE IS ASLEEP ON THAT COUCH UNTIL 10 PM WHEN I WAKE HIM FOR BED. I HAVE LOST 58 POUNDS THIS YEAR. HE IS MAINTAINING WHERE HE WAS. AS KIDS, WE HAD TO WALK FOR MILES TO GET TO McDONALD'S OR FOR A PIZZA. AND WALKING HOME WORE IT OFF. BUT MY KIDS SPENT NO TIME WALKING AT ALL AND WERE DRIVEN EVERYWHERE THEY WENT. WE BUILT FORTS AS KIDS. THEY PLAY VIDEO GAMES. ONE LOVES THE SUN BUT ONLY FOR GETTING A TAN - NOT FOR OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES. THE OTHER IS A COLD WEATHER GIRL LIKE HER MOM AND DOES EVERY WINTER SPORT IN THE BOOK; JUST LIKE I DID BEFORE I GOT OLD AND DEVELOPED MEDICAL ISSUES.

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STITCH4EVER 1/6/2013 12:15PM

    DH ALWAYS EATS IN FRONT OF THE TV WHILE I SIT ALONE AT THE TABLE. HE FALLS ASLEEP WITHIN MINUTES AFTER HE FINISHES EATING WHILE I CLEAN UP THE KITCHEN AND SET THINGS UP FOR BREAKFAST THE NEXT MORNING. HE IS ASLEEP ON THAT COUCH UNTIL 10 PM WHEN I WAKE HIM FOR BED. I HAVE LOST 58 POUNDS THIS YEAR. HE IS MAINTAINING WHERE HE WAS. AS KIDS, WE HAD TO WALK FOR MILES TO GET TO McDONALD'S OR FOR A PIZZA. AND WALKING HOME WORE IT OFF. BUT MY KIDS SPENT NO TIME WALKING AT ALL AND WERE DRIVEN EVERYWHERE THEY WENT. WE BUILT FORTS AS KIDS. THEY PLAY VIDEO GAMES. ONE LOVES THE SUN BUT ONLY FOR GETTING A TAN - NOT FOR OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES. THE OTHER IS A COLD WEATHER GIRL LIKE HER MOM AND DOES EVERY WINTER SPORT IN THE BOOK; JUST LIKE I DID BEFORE I GOT OLD AND DEVELOPED MEDICAL ISSUES.

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SUSANBEAMON 1/6/2013 1:10AM

  certain activities have aleays included food. learn to do the activity without the food. but i doubt i want to go to a birthday party where there is no cake or ice cream. what's the point? that seems to me to be like going to the ballet where they don't dance.

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