Want to Cut Down on Sugar? 3 Places to Start
Research published in early 2017 found that the less involved you are in serving yourself sweet treats (think: someone else hands you an ice cream cone or cuts you a slice of cake), the more apt you are to eat up—and in jumbo portions. After all, if someone else is doing the serving, you don't have to accept responsibility for what you throw down the hatch. But, on the flip side, if you accept responsibility for what you do (by filling your own plate at mealtime), you'll wind up making healthier food decisions, according to the study.
One additional step you could do to manage your portions is to post a photo of everything you eat to a social channel like Instagram. "I've had a client find this really helped them think about their decisions, even the small ones like grabbing bites of food from a companion's plate," Fear says. If you prefer to keep things private, try starting an account for just a few healthy-eating friends or accountability buddies to follow.
If you're finding it hard to cut back because of sugar cravings, you might want to get more shut-eye. A small study published in the journal SLEEP in 2016 found that cutting your sleep short increases levels of naturally circulating cannabinoids—the same chemicals responsible for giving pot smokers the munchies.
"Studies have supported that at least seven hours is a meaningful tipping point, so if eight or nine won't fit, shoot for getting at least seven," says Fear.
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