“I usually treat myself to one meal on Sundays when I can have whatever I want. It’s usually pizza. That’s my favorite indulgence” -Beyonce
“Let’s face it, a nice creamy chocolate cake does a lot for people; it does for me” -Audrey Hepburn
“Live less out of habit and more out of intent” -Unknown
“Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen Hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Appreciate your friends. Continue to learn. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.” -Mary Anne Radmacher
I have a weak spot for sweets. If I can get my hands on sweets, I eat them aimlessly. They are so easy to eat and taste so darn good. I find myself wandering into the cookie or candy jar whenever I am bored and grab a few pieces. This is definitely one aspect of my eating habits I win or lose with over time. I know in my heart these mindless Indulgences don’t help my weight and where I want to go with my goals.
I know your struggle! The best tasting foods are usually indulgent and taste amazing! However, we must realize they move us away form becoming who we are meant to be. Sweets, fast foods, sodas, fried foods, etc. are high in calories, fat, and sugar and do not normally contribute to a healthy diet. Therefore, why are they so rampant/ abundant in our lives?? The answer is that they are ADDICTIVE! Sweets and other indulgent foods usually contain sugar, fat, and/ or salt which have an addictive effect on our brains. When we have some, we want more.
So what are we to do? If these indulgences have such a powerful addictive effect, how can we possibly overcome it? I suggest that we INDULGE WITH INTENTION. Indulging is OK as long as we do it in a mindful and strategic way. These indulgences usually give us stress relief and a good feeling in the moment. Breaking the mindless snacking on sweets and such is most important. Instead of seeing sweets as a reward or normal part of your day, aim to change your perspective. Reserve eating sweet foods at special times. For example, eat a slice of cake at your friend’s wedding. Eat a piece of pie on your favorite holiday. And of course, eat your birthday cake! These moments and times are meant for celebration. And, these are the true opportunities when we can truly enjoy these indulgences.
I know what you’re thinking: “but, I can’t even think of giving up my daily candy bar.” Yes, from the surface, it looks difficult. How can we break a habit that has been rooted in our daily routines for so long? I’ve always found that building a habit in place of an old one is easier than breaking one by itself. When looking to limit your indulgent, mindless snacking, try these:
At the same time, remember to be realistic. Don’t expect to break the habit right away. Give yourself some wiggle room. Aim to limit your bad habit to less than before. As time goes on, limit it some more. Before you know it, your mindless snacking habit will be for special occasions only! As always, Eat, Move, and Improve!