The title of this article may have you wondering, “What mouth? What book?”
When you’re trying to lose weight, having a food journal (the book) where you record down everything you eat is one of the best strategies to hold yourself accountable. It may seem like a bit of a hassle to write down whatever you eat (your mouth), and it is but the benefits of this simple act is priceless.
Many people rely too much on their memory. The truth of the matter is that most people can’t even remember what they had for lunch two days ago. This is why it’s so handy to have a food journal.
By writing down everything that you eat, you’ll be able to see just how much food you’re consuming every single day. You’d be shocked at how the little snacks here and there all add up.
That’s the first ‘awakening’ that people experience when having a food journal. You’ll realize just how much unnecessary food you’re eating. Munching on chips when you’re watching TV, that soda you grab from the corner store as you walk back to the office during your lunch break, the doughnut you snack on from the office pantry, etc. are all often consumed mindlessly.
We eat on autopilot. Having a food journal forces us to stop and ask ourselves if we really should be eating in the first place. The efficacy of the food journal method relies on one act – you must write in it just before you eat something.
Eating food and writing it down, later on, is useful, but it doesn’t arrest you on the spot and make you think if what you’re eating will help you or hurt you. Is the food beneficial to your weight loss goals, or is it detrimental?
It’s that ‘on the spot’ self-reflecting that makes all the difference. You’ll be eating more mindfully, and that’s the first step.
Having a food journal will also show you eating patterns that you weren’t aware of. You may notice that you eat more if you stay awake late at night. The cure would be to go to bed earlier. Or you may realize that drinking beer makes you crave for greasy, unhealthy food. Best to avoid alcohol.
It’s these little things which go by unnoticed that make all the difference. A food journal lays it all bare in black and white. You can’t hide from the facts or make excuses in your mind.
If it says that you drank four cans of soda over the past three days, it’s time to replace it with water or something less sweet as you adapt to reducing your consumption of sugar.
Another point to note in your journal is how you feel after your meals. If a particular type of food makes you feel bloated or sluggish or moody, you may wish to avoid it and see if the symptoms disappear.
Not every food agrees with your body even if you’re not allergic to them. Some foods may leave you feeling non-optimal, and you’re just not in the mood to do anything. The foods you eat play a role in how you feel.
By monitoring your foods along with your feelings and physical experiences, you’ll be able to determine what foods are best for your body and what you should avoid. No two people are the same. So, you’ll discover how to eat in a way that’s best suited for you.
Keeping a food journal until you reach your desired body will be one of the most eye-opening experiences for you. Give it a try, and by the time you reach your ideal body weight, you’ll know what foods to eat, what to avoid, and how much you should eat. Get started today.