Dieting can be very hard and time-consuming, and it probably leaves you with a feeling of hunger more often than not. But we have good news for you: the Internet is filled with little habits you can teach yourself that will help reduce how much you want to eat without getting cravings throughout the day.
The Bright Side team put together 10 of the best and easiest tricks to limit the portions you eat so that you can incorporate them into your life — it’s as easy as pie.
1. Eat more spicy food.
Sprinkle some cayenne on your favorite foods, or cut up a pepper with some veggies. It’s a very simple trick that boosts your food’s flavor and promotes weight loss by reducing hunger, according to this study. “We found that consuming red pepper can help manage the appetite and burn more calories after a meal, especially for individuals who don’t consume spice regularly,” a researcher claimed.
2. Drink from a tall glass.
Sugary drinks are usually not recommended in a diet. A simple trick to consume less without missing your favorite beverage is to pour your drinks into smaller, taller glasses. As suggested by this study, you’ll feel like you had more to drink. Add some extra ice to your drink to make it look even more full (when it’s actually less)!
3. Enjoy peppermint.
The scent and taste of peppermint can promote weight loss by fighting any food cravings you might have during the day. So to reduce over-snacking, we suggest buying a mint-flavored candle or having some delicious mint tea during the day.
4. Eat with your non-dominant hand.
It might be a bit of a challenge, but eating with the “wrong” hand will make you eat slower and be more mindful. It’s said that this will decrease hunger and lead to higher levels of satisfaction between meals.
5. Buy a set of colored plates.
This study suggests that having a color contrast between your food and your plate is the key to making you serve yourself less. Even though the reason is not entirely clear yet, other research found that people eating from red plates consume less overall, independent of the color of the food.
6. Buy smaller plates as well.
If you over-serve, it’s very likely that you’ll also overeat. Shockingly, in this research, even the nutrition experts served 31% more without being aware of it when given a larger plate to eat off of. Apparently, it’s the distance to the border of the plate that makes you decide on what a proper portion is instead of the amount of food itself. So you’d better buy some more small plates!
7. End your meal with a new kind of sweet treat.
We all love sweets and most of us can’t wait until dessert while having dinner. Unfortunately, we also know that these treats don’t fit too well in a diet. Try treating yourself in a different way, like by enjoying a cup of sweet tea after dinner.
8. Start every meal with a glass of water.
Symptoms of dehydration can be what’s causing a rumbling belly instead of actual hunger. Consuming plenty of water and herbal tea will help keep you satisfied throughout the day. And luckily, water is one of the few things you can indulge in as much as you want without worrying about calorie intake.
9. Add veggie fillers.
An easy way to cut calories is by filling up your meals with many veggies. Here are some ideas for how to eat more veggies: swap in mushrooms for half the ground meat in recipes, make oatmeal more filling with diced apples, and use whole wheat pita in place of bread so you can stuff it with more veggies.
10. Make carbs the topper instead of the base.
Grains make blood sugar levels spike after meals, leading to weight gain. So we suggest you rethink the way you use them. For example, instead of starting with a granola base in the morning, fill your cup with yogurt and then sprinkle just a tiny amount of granola on top for the crunch you crave.
Would these tricks fit into a diet you could try? Do you have any more smart tricks you’d like to share with us?