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Old 03-06-2011, 02:35 PM   #1
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Default Eating slowly vs. Inhaling food

I'm a super-fast eater. I always have been one. I'm doing portion control and calorie counting. When I eat my food fast, I do not get the satisfaction and enjoyment out of the meal. I would like to slow down.

Has any of you fast eaters slowed down successfully? If yes, what did you do to stretch out mealtime?
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Old 03-06-2011, 02:45 PM   #2
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I try to eat slower and actually savor my food. Plus I always hear eating slower gives your stomach time to actually send you the signal that you are full.

Don't eat while you're doing something else. Turn off the TV, put down the book, just sit at the table and enjoy your meal.

Put your fork down between bites.

Count your chews, put a number on it and make sure each bite gets the same number of chews.

Make nicer meals. Whenever I make or go out and enjoy a fancy dinner I always want to enjoy it more so I eat it slower.
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Old 03-06-2011, 02:56 PM   #3
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I just multi-task while I eat lol. I take a bite, then play on my phone, take another bite and do the same thing again. I just like doing something while im eating, whether its reading my book or whatever. That slows me down A LOT!
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:07 PM   #4
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I'm a fellow fast eater, but I never used to be. I think retail work "broke" me; when you ostensibly get half an hour for lunch, but it winds up being fifteen minutes because it's during Christmas, and then that fifteen minutes gets cut down further with cooking time and such, you're talking about HAVING to inhale food if you want to eat at all.

I've tried the recommended techniques for slowing down--take a "mid-meal break," put the fork down between bites, sip water between bites, chew each bite N times--but they feel weird to me even after a month of giving them a fair and honest shake. It actually reduces my meal satisfaction as I'm spending too much time focusing on what are "appropriate" bites and pauses. I don't want my mealtime thoughts to be "Okay, take a bite...not too big...chew chew chew--how many times have I chewed, I lost count...set down the fork...NO! NO! Don't pick it up yet! Count another ten seconds!...breathe...wait, did someone say something to me?...crap, he did and now I lost count of how many seconds I should wait..."

ARGH. No way.

I already weigh my food to the nearest gram, eat off of smaller plates, use smaller utensils, and count calories. That's enough structure and control; I'm not going to count bites and seconds as well. I tried it and it didn't "take." It never has.

If you can learn to be a slow eater, more power to you. If you can't, don't think it dooms you to being unsatisfied with your food. Just add more low-calorie volume with your meals. I don't enjoy a meal in which I'm setting down my fork and counting seconds until it's okay to pick it up again, but I don't mind one in which forkfuls of meat loaf are separated by a few bites of asparagus or broccoli or salad.

Other possibilities include starting your meal with a bowl of light soup, eating the bulkiest stuff on the plate first so it has more time to send "I'm full" signals to your brain, and changing around your meals so that you eat smaller ones more frequently/bigger ones less often, whichever you find more satisfying.
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:32 PM   #5
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Not eating alone helps. If you have people around you're more likely to talk to them and slow down. I eat at the computer sometimes because I surf the web and then take a bite, then do some more surfing, and take a bite. Random things like that too trick myself out of just inhaling. :P

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Old 03-06-2011, 04:01 PM   #6
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When I'm either eating with others, I'm a very slow eater because I talk so much! lol! I'd rather talk than eat. Also, if I'm doing something while eating, especially something that requires my hands. Like being on the computer! Takes me forever to eat when I'm doing something while eating.
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Old 03-06-2011, 04:35 PM   #7
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Once while eating out with a friend, I realized she was still playing with her food: opening the sandwich, rearranging the ingredients, putting on condiments, picking out what she didn't like, etc. I'd just inhaled the last bite of the first half of my sandwich!!

The hardest thing for me in trying to eat slower is to remember to do it.
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Old 03-06-2011, 06:24 PM   #8
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Good article on whether eating slowly makes you feel more full, or not.
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Old 03-06-2011, 06:28 PM   #9
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Interesting article. I wish they had more intervals than 5 or 30 minutes. It would be nice to see if it were a nice linear progression, or if there was more of a threshold...
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Old 03-06-2011, 06:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WebRover View Post
Once while eating out with a friend, I realized she was still playing with her food: opening the sandwich, rearranging the ingredients, putting on condiments, picking out what she didn't like, etc. I'd just inhaled the last bite of the first half of my sandwich!!

The hardest thing for me in trying to eat slower is to remember to do it.
That is so common for me in my house. I am such a fast eater and my Dad is the pickiest eater out there.

I am usually about done while he is still rearranging everything neatly. The lettuce. The cheese. The tomato. The pickle.

The only thing that works for me, is if I am doing something (like working) where I literally stop eating and go do something between bites.

Other than that, I'm doomed to enjoying my meals in 5 minutes or less.
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Old 03-06-2011, 06:35 PM   #11
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Adding hot sauce to my food is the only thing that has helped me to slow down eating. I love the taste so it's not like ruining it for me but it forces me to eat slower. I add it to most foods
Other than that just stopping a few times through the meal, although depending on how hungry I am makes it harder or easier. I like to eat slower to prevent indigestion
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Old 03-06-2011, 08:08 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nola Celeste View Post
I already weigh my food to the nearest gram, eat off of smaller plates, use smaller utensils, and count calories. That's enough structure and control; I'm not going to count bites and seconds as well. I tried it and it didn't "take." It never has.
This is me! Tried everything and found it all so distracting that I've just accepted my quickness and have stopped worrying about it. I don't think it has any impact on my weight because I don't depend on my ability to tell when I'm full, anyway. I follow a food plan, and have the entire time I've been in maintenance, that allows me certain foods and portions, and I simply do not deviate. About the only "trick" I use is to eat all of my vegis before moving on to the more calorie dense portion of my meal. I'm not going to eat too much anyway, but this increases my odds of being satisfied with whatever portion size I've chosen.
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Old 03-06-2011, 08:47 PM   #13
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Not taking another bite until I finish the one I already have in my mouth! Also I like to chew it until it gets all mushy, so I get all the flavor, and so I won't just be scarfing down bite after bite after bite of half-chewed food.
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Old 03-07-2011, 12:13 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nola Celeste View Post
I've tried the recommended techniques for slowing down--take a "mid-meal break," put the fork down between bites, sip water between bites, chew each bite N times--but they feel weird to me even after a month of giving them a fair and honest shake. It actually reduces my meal satisfaction as I'm spending too much time focusing on what are "appropriate" bites and pauses. I don't want my mealtime thoughts to be "Okay, take a bite...not too big...chew chew chew--how many times have I chewed, I lost count...set down the fork...NO! NO! Don't pick it up yet! Count another ten seconds!...breathe...wait, did someone say something to me?...crap, he did and now I lost count of how many seconds I should wait..."
My exact thoughts. I also feel like I'm not satisfied unless I get to take BIG bites.

I have accepted the fact that I'll never be a super slow eater. Doing things like drinking lots of water and tea before, during and after meals helps a little. Also, if I linger and wait a long time before digging in, I feel like I've made my meal last longer.
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Old 03-07-2011, 02:02 AM   #15
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I have been trying to eat slower too. My mother once told me that my brother and I were conditioned to eat fast since elementary school. She noticed after we had started school we would scarf down our food like we didn't have time to eat. Add years of 30 min lunches at work and its a hard pattern to break. I now just try to savor what I'm eating and try not to inhale, lol. I find if I really enjoy what I am eating I tend to eat it slower, and I try not to eat alone so I have a reason to take breaks in between bites to talk.
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