You’re staring at your plate that now has just a few more bites of your dinner food left. You’ve really enjoyed your meal, but if you are being honest with yourself, you are satisfied and probably don’t need to eat any more.
As you contemplate what to do, you glance around the table. Everyone else is still eating. You decide to pick up your fork and finish the remaining food on your plate. As you swallow the last bite, you now regret cleaning the plate. You are overfull and uncomfortable.
Why do you do this time and time again?
Sounds like you are part of the “clean the plate club”. There are many reasons that you might be part of this club. Perhaps your mom or dad told you when growing up that the children in another country are starving and you should be grateful for the food you have. Or, you feel bad wasting the money that you work so hard to earn in order to buy the food. Either way (and there are likely other reasons as well such as “It’s not enough to dirty a container for”), you hardly ever walk away from the table with food left on your plate.
This is a practice that is not serving you well on your intuitive eating journey, or your healthy living journey.
Here are 3 tips to help you be totally okay with leaving food on your plate:
- Slow down the pace of your eating so you can achieve pleasure in each and every bite. It will be easier to stop when you sense you have had enough.
- Promise yourself that you will pack up whatever you leave over (even if it’s a small amount) so you can eat it tomorrow. You will then enjoy this wonderful meal again.
- Take less on your plate, knowing that if you are still hungry you can always take more.
Sounds simple? Maybe so, but I do know that it’s not so easy to do. Make a commitment to at least try.
Your turn to take action: What are some of the reasons you clean your plate even after you’ve had enough?