Force of Habit

Habit is interesting.

Grocery shopping on the same day each week.

Conditioning your hair twice. Every time.

Tying your shoes with two knots instead of one.

It is easy to get into the habit of doing well, anything.

In fact, experts say that repetition of an action creates habit.

So, what on earth does this have to do with girl eat?

Well, I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the habits we get into with food.

Oatmeal for breakfast. 3:00 snack. Milk and a cookie for dessert.

It is easy to fall into these habits, because, well, a lot of reasons.

Life is hard. Stuff comes up. Schedules are busy. Ingredients are slim. Time is short.

For all these reasons, and more, it is easy to fall into a food pattern. Eating at the same times every day makes sense when you are working because you tend to eat around the same time everyone else does, or when your lunch break is every day. Eating the same foods makes sense because grocery shopping takes time and so does finding new recipes and cooking. Eating the same amount makes sense, too, because you know how much usually makes you full.

So, no problem right?

Well, not so fast. Habit is good for many reasons. It keeps us consistent. Stable. Gets our work done. It teaches our bodies to follow a schedule so that we feel the same way every day. But, habit can be bad, too.

If you eat the same foods over and over and over again you are losing out on all the nutrients you get from all those foods you don’t eat.

If you eat the same amount every single time, how do you know your body does not want more, or less?  If you pack the same amount of food all the time, do you have leftovers sometimes and not enough other times?  If you run out of the food you have packed that is supposed to be “all your food for the day,” do you get more if you get hungry?

If you eat at the same times every day, don’t you wonder why some days your hunger times don’t change depending on what you are doing, how much you’ve eaten, or what you have eaten?

Changing up our food life every now and then can be fun, exciting, healthy. Bringing in new recipes to the rotation adds different ingredients and nutrients to our diet. And, most importantly of all, eating when we are hungry however much until we are full keeps us happy. And, happiness just might become your favorite habit.

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