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The End of Overeating: Taking control of our insatiable appetite par [Kessler, David]
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Can Canada Put on the Brakes?

I walked into Jack Astor’s Bar & Grill in Toronto, an energetic place that draws a young crowd and entertains them with loud music and multiple television monitors. A sign advertised a restaurant gift card: “a gift for every craving.”

The dinner menu descriptions had an over-the-top quality that reminded me of Chili’s, including ultimate nachos, with their “bubbling blend of cheeses,” and a bacon cheeseburger.

I ordered two items from the “start-up” list. The lobster and crab dip was a warm, fatty blend dominated by cream cheese. The Southwest grilled chicken flatbread, with its four-cheese blend and smoky chipotle aioli, was a dish of fat on fat on refined carbohydrates, accompanied by a little protein. There were two flatbreads to an order, each about 10.5 inches long.

My entrée, crispy honey sesame chicken, consisted of fried chicken balls with a substantial portion of vegetables, covered in a sweet sauce. Fat, sugar, and salt had been layered and loaded onto the dish.

But for all that, the food at Jack Astor’s stopped somewhat short of its American counterparts. The preparations had less of an industrial quality. The dishes were cooked to order on site, not par-fried, frozen, and shipped across the country. There weren’t as many fried chicken balls on my dinner plate, and they weren’t as large.

I saw that kind of contrast everywhere I looked in Canada. Swiss Chalet offered an all-you-can-eat lunch, a garlic cheese loaf “smothered in melted Jack and cheddar,” and a waiter who assured me that “everything comes with dipping sauce.” But portion sizes were a trifle smaller than is typical in the United States and there was a homemade quality to most of the food. At Caroline’s Cheesecake, there were fewer choices than at the Cheesecake Factory, but the portions seemed about as big. The Pickle Barrel had a lot of healthy-sounding food on its menu, but it also served a “triple threat chocolate sundae,” a “mammoth Oreo cookie sundae,” and lemon cranberry and apple cinnamon muffins that were the size of grapefruits.

Canada, it seems, is headed in a troubling direction as the ingredients of conditioned hypereating are assembled. Things aren’t as bad here as they are in the United States, but they aren’t good. One out of four Canadians is now obese, compared to one in three in the U.S. One-third of Canadians who were classified as normal weight a decade ago are now overweight. The upward curve is especially evident in the younger population, with the number of overweight and obese children, ages 7 to 13, increasing by as much as 300% in just two decades.

Human physiology and conditioning are, of course, the same in both countries, so social norms and the environment offer the only possibilities of arresting these trends. It is as if a great natural experiment is being conducted in Canada.

An earlier generation of Canadians recalls a time when eating in restaurants was a rare event and snacking in the street was considered crass. One colleague told me how his father used to love visiting U.S. supermarkets because he was awed by how many more varieties of breakfast cereal were available. Even today, despite changing patterns and the growth of chain restaurants across the country, food is still not quite so ubiquitous or indulgent in Canada. The limitations that once disappointed Canadians may yet save them from the consequences its more overindulgent neighbor is facing.

Nonetheless, candy cane donuts and sour cream donuts are now available at Tim Horton’s, and the small donut balls known as “Timbits” are one of the store’s especially popular features. Even the upscale restaurant, Milestone’s, serves an array of sweet and fatty dipping sauces with its Cajun popcorn shrimp, seafood mixed grill, and yam fries. And the Quebecois tradition of poutine– French fries covered with cheese curds and brown gravy–has gained traction, with many fast-food restaurants in all of the provinces adding it to their menus. Swiss Chalet gives me the opportunity to “poutinize” my fries for $1.99.

Still, Canada has an opportunity to recognize the trajectory it is on and change course. A publishing professional I met there suggested how it might be done when he confessed to his struggle over Kit Kats. A large, tightly disciplined man, he told me that every evening as he heads to the train for his ride home, he breaks into a run to get safely past a news stand that sells those crispy chocolate wafers. Canada, too, must figure out the direction it needs to start running in order to avoid calamity.

When I asked the manager of Jack Astor’s about portion sizes, he told me, “They’re bigger than they have to be. But it’s not like Cheesecake Factory.”

The question is whether it will stay that way.

From the Hardcover edition.

Revue de presse

"A fascinating account of the science of human appetite, as well as its exploitation by the food industry."
— Michael Pollan, author of In Defense of Food

From the Hardcover edition.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 1342 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 332 pages
  • Pagination - ISBN de l'édition imprimée de référence : 0771095562
  • Editeur : Penguin; Édition : 1st (1 avril 2010)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
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Format: Broché
Do not mistake this book with a dieting book. David A. Kessel's plan is not to help us reduce weight by sharing cooking tips and recipes. His aim is much bigger: he wants us to understand why we eat too much or overeat as he says. There is no point indeed in trying to eat less if you do not understand first the root causes of your overeating. Once you understand the mechanisms of overeating then you can find ways to control yourself and your food impulses. The book is repetitive at times, but ideas are very clear and backed-up by laboratory tests results and other researchers quotations and discoveries.

Few facts left a mark on me:
1) Fat people do eat more than thin people, quantity matters a lot in the fattening process (and let's forget the high-low metabolism myth that actually concerns so few people that there is no use of speaking about it).
2) One issue is that we do not actually realize how much we eat (try to count and don't forget those candies you got in office, that "small" snack taken on the way back home...).
3) If given a choice, we do prefer highly sweet, salty, fatty dishes despite all we say and believe (blind tests are there to prove it).
4) Food industry and restaurants do play and use our attraction to highly palatable food to make us eat BIGGER QUANTITIES and MORE OFTEN.
5) Even kids that used to compensate naturally big meals by smaller are compensating less and less nowadays.

But no need to despair, everybody can change:
- Avoid processed food since it is impossible to be sure of the content and it is likely to contain an excess of salt, sugar, fat, altogether.
- Do not eat between meals and if you do, then reduce quantities during meals and snack time to ensure overall eating more often does not make you eat more.
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Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Pour ceux qui essaient de comprendre le raisonnement des industriels.
Ce livre est par moment un peu répetitif, peut-être parce qu'il est adapté en particulier au "monde" américain (nationalité et cursus de l'auteur obligent).
En tout cas il y a à mon sens deux leçons à tirer:
1) il faut éviter de grignoter
2) il faut éviter les repas préparés
En gros, il faut manger comme nos parents nous ont appris à le faire.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.2 étoiles sur 5 626 commentaires
1.065 internautes sur 1.119 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Superb Book On How and Why People Overeat As Well As How to Stop Overeating 9 mars 2009
Par scesq - Publié sur
Format: Relié Commentaire d‘un membre du Club des Testeurs ( De quoi s'agit-il? )
This is a well-written, easily understandable, interesting book on the very serious subject of overeating. The book is broken into six parts with relatively small chapters ranging in size from approximately three pages to eleven pages in length with many in the four to seven page range. The first part, for example, has 13 chapters so there is much information but it is presented in a way which flows well together.

When I got this book I was interested in the subject matter but I was worried that the book would be boring or so technical that I would lose interest. I read this book in two days and it has changed my approach to eating.

Part One of the book, Sugar, Fat, Salt, talks about why people eat and overeat. It looks at the physical as well as psychological aspects of overeating.

Part Two of the book (my favorite), The Food Industry, gives specific examples of how restaurants and the food industry contribute to the problem by creating food that people want to eat but is not healthy. For instance I never new that bread had so much salt because it takes away the bitter taste of the flour and brings up the flavor. The author also addresses how nutrition information on packaging is manipulated by the food industry. For instance if a food contains more sugar than any other ingredient it must go first on the list but if you use a number of sources of sugar like brown sugar, corn syrup and fructose each is listed individually and goes lower on the list.

Part Three, Conditioned Hypereating Emerges, talks about how we get trapped into an overeating pattern. It references numerous studies and explores whether overeating is nature, nurture or both.

Part Four, The Theory of Treatment, talks about theoretical ways people can break the overeating habit.

Part Five, Food Rehab, offers practical ways individuals can stop overeating. The advice is great.

Part Six, The End Of Overeating, talks about the challenges ahead to end overeating. While it will not be easy, each individual has the power to end his or her overeating despite roadblocks created by the food industry or our own physical or mental makeup.

This is a great book that has started me thinking differently about food. It is well written and the best on the subject I have ever read.
656 internautes sur 697 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 The End of Overeating - a Book Report 17 mai 2009
Par Carol M - Publié sur
Format: Relié
As a middle aged woman who eats pretty well, gets regular exercise, and takes great supplements, it gets pretty discouraging to deal with the frustration and potential negative health consequences of the extra 20 pounds I am carrying around, not to mention the fact that I look in the mirror and see my grandmother's body!

Consequently, I am always on a search for the magic fat loss bullet. So it was a synchronistic moment when I happened to listen to an interview with Dr. David Kessler on PBS recently. This is the former FDA commissioner who reinvented the food label and tackled the tobacco industry. His new book, The End of Overeating, was a must read for me. I wasn't disappointed.

The book is a fascinating read, full of documentation and testimonials on the growing obesity problem and our apparent inability to control our food intake as a culture. Let me walk you through the salient points in this book:

We are biologically wired to respond to sugar, fat, and salt. As processed food became an industry designed to create a profitable product, our waistlines grew. In 1960 women between the ages of twenty and twenty nine weighed an average of 128 pounds. In 2000, that number grew to 157. In the forty to forty-nine age group, it grew from an average of 142 to a whopping 169 pounds! Yes, ladies, the average perimenopausal woman in America weighs 169 pounds, so don't feel alone.

Most of us blame ourselves for our weight gain. We attribute it to a lack of self discipline and control. Well, it turns out that certain foods actually override our conscious will and drive us to continue to consume them. This is a biological phenomenon he equates with alcohol addiction. We are collectively addicted to sugar, fat, and salt.

He discusses some interesting research on rats being fed sugar combined with fat and shows how these animals will walk across an electrified plate to get to Fruit Loops; a food with a layered combination of salt, fat, and sugar. Rats will go to great lengths to eat this food and will become obese as a result.

His chapter on neural networks was particularly interesting to me. If you have read my book The 8 Keys to Wellness you know I am a big advocate of creating new habits by repeating a desired behavior 21 days in a row in order to form new neural pathways that will reinforce the new behavior. What this book showed me was that even if we create those new pathways, the old ones are still there. For example, people who quit smoking will continue to want a cigarette years later when they are in a situation that triggers that old neural pathway. I was a little discouraged reading this, but it also helped me give myself some slack because of the many times I have failed to stay on an eating and exercise plan, an affirmation strategy, or any other self development scheme I have tried. It also explains the 'rubber band effect'. This is what happens when you try to create a new behavior and rebound back to your old way of doing things. It's all about brain chemistry!

Fat, sugar, and salt-especially when combined, interact with the opioid circuits in the brain, which causes us to consume more of the substance that triggered the reaction. Think about potato chips. You don't think of them as having sugar, but the simple sugars in the potato covered with fat and topped with salt are a deadly chemical combination that triggers an insatiable desire to consume all of the potato chips. The same thing happens with tortilla chips or bread. You can't even tell when you are satiated, because the combination of the fat, sugar, and salt overrides the ability for the body to create satiety signals to get you to stop eating.

Further, the food industry is dedicated to getting you to become dependent on these addictive foods. They add chemicals which further enhance the brain's pleasure circuits and cause you to want to eat more-and gain weight in the process.

Dr. Kessler provides a great overview of the steps we can take to avoid taking the first bite of these deadly foods. He admits that this is a very difficult process but it can and needs to be done if we are to prevent the adverse effects that fat has on our health.

Here are his recommendations:

1. Become aware of what you are compulsively saying to yourself about a food cue.
He says we have to be conscious of our 'premonitory urges' which you can notice and then say 'thank you' to your brain for telling you. Then you can choose something else.

2. Engage in a competitive behavior to cause habit reversal.
We need to plan ahead if we want to compete with our brain's old habits. For example, instead of driving by that fast food chain you usually drop by, change your driving route so you avoid it. Start to notice your habitual behaviors that lead to over eating.

3. Formulate thoughts that compete with, and serve to quiet, the old ones.
Our thoughts have power over our behavior. We need to disconnect pleasure thoughts with the behaviors we no longer want to reinforce. NLP has some terrific techniques for this. Minimally, we can transform, 'That ice cream looks really great; I'll have just a few bites' to I know I can't have one bite because it will lead to twenty bites.' (I love this because that is how I learned to quit smoking. I knew I couldn't have just one cigarette-or even a puff, because if I did I would be smoking a pack within a couple of days.

4. Get support
A recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that social networks can promote obesity. If you have friends and family that are obese you are more likely to be obese. So, it's important to develop ongoing relationships with people who demonstrate the behaviors you want to create, yourself. In other words, get some skinny friends and do what they do.

5. Create rules to guide your eating behaviors.
Rules aren't the same thing as will power. He says willpower leads to a conflict between the force of the behavior you want to create and your determination to resist the old patterns. If you have rules to follow, you don't need to have will power. So, we need to create specific, simple rules that we follow. A good example is "I don't eat French fries," and "I don't eat dessert."

6. Change your emotional connection to certain foods.
The thought of certain foods triggers emotions that were developed as a result of the brain chemicals that were stimulated when you ate that food at some time in the past when you wanted to 'medicate' yourself. The way to overcome the pleasurable anticipation of, "I can't wait to go to the movie and eat popcorn" is to connect negative emotions to the fat, sugar, and salt layered foods we crave. Tony Robbins has a great example of thinking about Milk Duds. Milk Duds are one of my favorite indulgences, especially when you combine them with buttery popcorn. He says to look at Milk Duds and think of eating cockroaches. They look kind of like cockroaches, so it can be relatively easy to do.

Remember, the goal is to change our neural circuitry to overcome the desire to eat these foods because once we start, the biochemisty involved in stopping is virtually insurmountable.

There is a lot more in this book that will help you understand how these insidious foods are keeping you fat and will inspire you to do something about it. You can it online or at any bookstore.
472 internautes sur 519 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A clincal account of the science behind overeating 27 février 2009
Par Natasha Stryker - Publié sur
Format: Relié Commentaire d‘un membre du Club des Testeurs ( De quoi s'agit-il? )
I appreciated this book. I appreciated a health-related book discussing dieting that WAS NOT trying to sell you something. The research that went into this book is impressive and the results are fascinating. Turns out that along with our waistlines, processed food manipulation has been on the rise since the 1980's.

Food producers of all types have been seeking ways to make us want their product more, and it is working. The pleasure-seeking part of your brain is hard to turn off once saturated with key combinations of ingredients, namely fat, sugar and salt. We are hard-wired to seek foods with these ingredients combined, and the public has been trained to respond. The result? Severe obesity and obesity-related health problems in the numbers we have never seen before.

This book does a wonderful job educating the reader in what they are doing subconsciously. It gives power to those who walk around inhaling food and thinking, "why the hell am I doing this?!" Once armed with the knowledge, it is amazing how you walk through the grocery store and see the companies practicing what the book preaches.

You begin to read labels in a new way and ask yourself questions like, "why would this product have so much sugar salt AND fat in it, it's just plain spaghetti sauce?!" If you are a chronic dieter, you stop looking at just fat grams and calories and start READING the whole label. The book is completely right about so many products; fat, salt and sugar are there in combinations to solely get you hooked to eat more of the product.

This book is informative and well written; the style is very easy to read and understand without feeling talked down to. If you ever wondered why we are in the state we are in as a nation of consumers, you will enjoy the education you will get from this book.
26 internautes sur 28 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 life changing book 25 novembre 2011
Par Lunajuly - Publié sur
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
This book changed my life. I exercise and work very hard to lose weight but continually struggled to control my eating. All of the books I have read have told me I am eating out of emotional reasons or because I am stressed out or repressing something, which did not ring true with me. (not to say that isn't true for other people) This book explains exactly why I crave the foods I crave and how to stop it. Extremely educational and informative
154 internautes sur 186 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Everything that has made the food industry successful is the problem that has resulted in obesity and its related health issues. 27 juin 2009
Par K. Henderson - Publié sur
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
Having battled weight all my adult life, these are some of the important points I took away from David Kessler's book:

The food industry is the manipulator of consumers' minds and desires. As a result, restaurant food is loaded with fat, salt, and sugar. In a cyclical process, eating highly palatable foods with just the right amounts of sugar, fat and salt activates the opioid circuits in the brain and increases consumption of highly palatable food. Engaging opioid mechanisms interferes with "taste-specific satiety." You don't grow tired of the taste of a food, you just keep eating it.

Humans prefer an exaggerated stimulus. Hyperpalatable foods with very energy-dense sugar and fat are the culinary equivalent of entertainment spectacles like Disneyland or Las Vegas. The amount of sugar in food today goes beyond the level we could have experienced naturally, and that means we desire it more. If we were eating these types of foods once in awhile (like we visit Disneyland once in awhile) it wouldn't be such a problem. The difficulty is that we do it so often.

People have been conditioned to eat more of certain types of foods during certain times of day. Culturally, we are now expected to eat during times of the day when we normally would not have eaten. During my years teaching at one school site, we had recess aides. As a result, each morning at 9:30, we teachers would dismiss our students for recess and then gather in the lunchroom. There was the expectation that there would be a snack in that lunchroom every day: chips and guacamole, a cake (teachers were encouraged to bring a cake to share on their birthdays) or something else. We would sit and dish about our kids and munch away on the snacks at the table. I gained 15 pounds that first year of teaching, and thereafter continued a pattern that resulted in more weight gain over the next 8 years that I worked at that school. When I transferred to a new school, there were no morning recess aides. So, there was no routine to have food in the lounge as had been the case at the old school. The result: skinnier teachers with more appropriate morning eating habits. After awhile, I gave up that "morning snack" entirely. But it had become a conditioned habit.

Positive associations become ingrained in us to motivate our behavior. We associate certain foods with pleasurable times in our lives. The reverse is most certainly true as well: We can associate foods with an unpleasurable experience as well. My sister will not eat scalloped potatoes and ham to this day because she vomited that particular dinner up one evening at the beginning of a bout with stomach flu.

Foods high in sugar, fat and salt are altering the biological circuitry of our brains. People cannot control their responses to highly palatable foods because their brains have been changed by the foods they eat. When it comes to food, we are following an eating script that has been written into the circuits of our brains.

For example, "Chili's Southwestern Egg rolls" is a "starter course" the size of a burrito. It is a tortilla, chicken, cheese, etc. all highly processed to add more fat, sugar and salt. It has a very high calorie density, and the processing means you can chew it very fast. Refined food simply melts in the mouth. Calling it an "egg roll" and a "starter course" implies that it is just something you order to eat until your dinner has been cooked. Those "egg rolls" have 810 calories, 51 grams of fat, 1250 mg of salt, and 59 carbs. But because it is so highly processed, you will eat the whole thing and your brain will not register fullness. Refined food simply melts in the mouth as though it has been pre-chewed. Processing creates a sort of "adult baby food." Foods with less "chew" don't leave us with a sense of being well fed. Food stripped of fiber (to make it easier to chew) doesn't satisfy the way a more fiber-rich version would do.

So, instead we eat to be belly filled.

The more the food industry behaves like the entertainment industry, the more profitable it is. Eating out has become more routine, so to compete, restaurants have to offer more "eatertainment."

The food industry's goal is the make enticing food easily and constantly available, and keeps it novel so people will keep coming back for more. You could call it the "taco chip challenge" - the challenge of controlled eating in the face of constant food availability.

The food industry is also constantly looking for ways to maximize profits by using poorer quality ingredients and fillers. Today's muffins are bigger, but most of the real ingredients are gone. They have been replaced by shortening or oil, powdered egg substitutes and processed sweeteners.

You have been systematically conditioned to overeat by the food industry. The industry has engineered food layered with salt, fat and sugar along with cues to maintain the constant urge to reward yourself with that food until it becomes habit.

Children naturally compensate to adjust the number of calories they consume during a day. If a child eats a calorie dense food, they will compensate naturally by eating less of other foods. This is the body's innate system of homeostasis. Over time, that is changing, and now studies are showing that children compensate less as they eat more and more processed (pre-chewed) foods.

Food companies fool us into thinking there is not as much sugar in a food by using techniques designed to manipulate our thinking. If a food contains more sugar than any other ingredient, federal regulations dictate that sugar be listed first on the label. To avoid having to do that, the industry will put in 3, 4, or 5 different sources of sugar so sugar doesn't have to be listed first. They will put in sugar, brown sugar, fructose, HFCS, honey or molasses in some combination to move the ingredients further down the list.

Social mores that used to keep us from eating in public have been lowered over time. We can walk and eat, be at work and eat, and that behavior isn't considered rude. Today, meetings and social occasions are constructed around food. There has been a breakdown in meal structure. The distinction between meals and snacks has been blurred. Snacking generally occurs without a compensating caloric reduction at mealtimes. People don't eat a smaller breakfast, lunch, or dinner just because they snack throughout the day.

Recent discussion about why the French can remain thin in spite of the rich foods they consume has enlightened us to why that happens. They eat smaller portions in only 2 or 3 meals per day. They simply don't snack. They don't eat in certain environments like classrooms or meetings, and they don't engage in "vagabond feeding" like Americans do.

As older patterns have broken down over time, eating for reward has overtaken eating for hunger. The satiety mechanism that takes place between meals cannot take place if you eat constantly. You lose the notion of what satiety feels like. Learning to overeat is an incremental process that grows with repeated exposure. To control our brains, we must learn to be mistrustful. We need to recognize that evolutionary behaviors that were helpful in the past have gotten out of control.

Intervention begins with the knowledge that we have a moment of choice - BUT ONLY A MOMENT - to recognize what is about to happen and do something else instead.

There are 4 steps to habit reversal.

Step 1 - Awareness: We need to be aware of sensory signals, stressful situations and forceful memories and their ability to make us respond to food. The question becomes, how much are you responding sensory stimuli instead of real hunger? Once you are cued, and have that initial urge, that is when you have a moment of control. Once you pay attention you have the capacity to extinguish the behavior.

Step 2 - Competing behavior: Learn and develop alternative responses that are incompatible with the undesired behavior. You need to know how you will respond when presented with the undesirable behavior. You must intervene early to have the best success.

Step 3 - Formulate thoughts that compete with and quiet old thoughts. Change the way you talk to yourself about food. Thinking about outcomes changes how you feel about the situation.

Step 4 - Seek support, but if your support system does not reinforce your goals, you're better off going it alone.

Use "if-then rules." If I encounter this cue, then I regulate my response to it this way.

Rules are not the same as willpower. Willpower pits the force of reinforcing stimuli against your determination to resist. A rule makes explicit the negative consequences of giving in to your impulses, and the positive consequences of not giving in. Rules are guided by higher brain functions. Categorical rules are easiest to follow:

* I don't eat French fries.
* I will not have dessert.

When the brain knows that a reward will not be forthcoming, it shifts its attention elsewhere.

If we learn to view the pursuit of sugar, salt and fat in a negative light, and to view with equal emotional significance behavior that encourages us to turn away from it, we can change a habit.

Counterconditioning is making a perceptual shift, and key to the essential principals of "Food Rehab."

* Engage in planned eating.
* Replace chaos with structure.
* Make simple yet specific rules about what and when to eat.
* Be predictable with food.

A just-right meal satisfies you for about 4 hours. A just-right snack satisfies you for about 2 hours. Eat half of what you normally eat, and then pay attention to how you feel 30 minutes later and then again 90 minutes later. Adjust accordingly until you find a serving size that is enough. Beyond that you are only eating for reward, not satiety. When people are served a "meal," their perception is that they are more satisfied than if they are served the exact same food called an "appetizer."

Any diet that keeps you hungry is guaranteed to fail. The most satiating micro-nutrients are meat and fiber. The least satiating is simple sugar. So you should eat whole wheat and brown rice instead of their white counterparts, meat instead of meat fillers, and an apple instead of applesauce. High fiber foods empty more slowly from the stomach, so you will feel satisfied for a longer period of time. Conversely, even though fat moves out of the stomach slowly, the body processes the feeling of fullness from fat more slowly, so it takes longer to feel full.

Eat foods that occur in nature - high fiber, complex carbs, protein, and small amounts of fat.

Be aware of your emotions and describe them so you can look more objectively at your mechanisms for coping with food. Ask yourself, "Will eating help me truly deal with this feeling?"

Have a list of alternate responses ready for dealing with your desire to eat when you really aren't hungry. Call a friend, go for a walk, do stress reduction exercises, or anything that can distract your attention.

Refuse everything you can't control! Even if it means that you have to throw it in the trash, do it so you won't have to fight temptation. One Christmas, my sister in law made tons of cookies, fudge, and peanut brittle for gifts. She gave each of us bags of this stuff, and just looking at it, I knew if I had it around my house, my family and I would eat it all. So, as soon as she left, I emptied it all into the trashcan. I felt so much better knowing that I wouldn't have to keep making the decision about whether or not to eat it every time I walked into the kitchen. It was so liberating.

Have an alternate plan. Take a different route to work, avoid the lunchroom when there are treats, and be aware of cues encouraging you to eat more.

Limit your exposure. In social situations, the temptations are ever-present. Remove yourself from the stimuli.

Redirect your attention. Ask yourself, "What will I do instead?" Read? Write? Exercise? Garden? Sew?

If I chose an activity to do every time I thought about eating something when I wasn't hungry, I would get so much accomplished. If I went into my sewing room and worked on a project every time I thought I needed a little snack (when in actuality I am probably just bored) I would have sewn hundreds of projects by now. Sewing is an activity that you simply cannot do while you eat. Watching TV is, so don't choose activities that are compatible with eating, because you will still find it hard to resist the cues to eat.

Learn active resistance. Refuse to be manipulated by marketing and advertising designed to get you to eat more. The food industry just wants to make money. They are doing everything in their power to achieve that goal. They really don't care about your health and well-being. They just want you to want more food, because that's how they make money. So, you have to be the keeper of your health. Understand that they want to control your thinking as much as possible to get you to buy their food. It has nothing to do with eating for hunger. It has everything to do with providing you with entertainment for your mouth and brain.

Use thought stopping. Think of the decision to eat like a television, and change the channel. Do it quickly! If you debate with yourself, you will lose the battle. Don't struggle, just get it out of your working memory. "Yes" has to become "NO" - not maybe. Engage your brain with something else. Stop the cue-urge-reward-habit cycle.

Talk down the urge. Tell yourself, "Eating this will keep me in the cue-urge-reward-habit cycle."

Exercise. Exercise engages the same neural regions as the other mood-enhancing rewards, and produces similar chemical responses in the brain.

Make your own set of rules about food and then follow them. One of my rules, "If I don't love it, why am I eating it?" This reminds me of these cookies my principal periodically brings to staff meetings. They are bone dry, almost to the point of being stale, and they have almost no flavor. But, because they are "cookies," the teachers eat them anyway. It is not hard for me to pass them by because they just aren't even delicious. But I watch as the other people in the room devour those cookies. Why? Because they have been conditioned. These cookies are a "special treat" provided by the boss for the enjoyment of the staff. So everyone dutifully eats those miserable, stale, rock-hard lumps of processed flour and sugar, and they delude themselves into believing it is a treat. How insane is that?

When I stopped eating so many chemicals in food (processed food) I realized that the "food" I was eating didn't taste like food at all. Now I would eat real strawberries, and when I tried something "strawberry-flavored" it tasted synthetic and unsatisfying.

If you allow an object to be more powerful, it will always have power over you. Refuse to be manipulated. People with conditioned hypereating need to become their own food coaches.

We need to move from glorification to demonization of the food industry - especially "big food."
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