So many people today who are struggling with weight or other digestive issues believe they have a problem with overeating. They think that if they could just stop eating when they should, then their metabolism would function perfectly and their body would naturally find its proper size and shape … and then maybe the perfect love, the perfect job, and the perfect life would all fall into place. But what is the point at which we “should” stop eating, and how do we know when we’ve reached it? And why do so many of us find it so difficult to stop when our body has had enough? In this fascinating new video from IPEtv, Marc David, Founder of the Institute for the Psychology of Eating, explains that contrary to popular belief, we don’t have a collective willpower problem, but there IS something that we can work on if we want to overcome overeating. If you’ve ever faced this challenge, tune in now to discover a simple but profound technique that you can start using right away. The results may surprise you!
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Here is a transcript of this week’s video:
Greetings, friends. Marc David here, founder of the Institute for the Psychology of Eating. Here’s what I want to talk about. We often overeat because we don’t pay attention. Let me explain.
Now, overeating is a big issue for so many people. So many people are trying to regulate their appetite, control what they eat so they can look perfect. And if you look perfect, you have the best body. And if you have the best body, everybody loves you and life is great. Got it. So when we overeat, that’s a challenge for us.
Let’s define overeating for a moment. Most people will define overeating in their heads—even though they’re not aware of this—is that it’s eating to a point where you feel and you believe you shouldn’t have. It’s this arbitrary place. Overeating for me is different from overeating for you is different for anybody else that you know.
So it’s eating to a point where we feel and believe that we shouldn’t have.
Here’s a second definition. It’s the actual eating past the body’s need for food. Sometimes it’s hard to figure out what’s the body’s need, what’s my emotional need. Here’s what I want to say. If you think you’re an overeater, if you say, “Oh, God. I overeat too much,” I want to say that overeating is not your problem. It’s a symptom. It’s not the problem. It’s a symptom.
Now, again, there’s lots of reasons. And I want to say the least of the reasons why people overeat is because of lack of willpower. A lot of people say, “Oh, yeah. I just need to get more willpower. And then as soon as I get control, I’m going to eat perfectly.” But what I want to say is this: one of the main reasons humans overeat is because of lack of awareness and attention. We don’t eat when we eat.
Oftentimes we don’t live when we live. Oftentimes when you’re talking to your friend, your loved one, your kids, we’re not even there. Our attention is somewhere else. Oftentimes when we’re at work, we’re working, but our attention is not really there. We are living in a day and age when so many things are vying for your mind and they’re grabbing your attention. And the media and the computer and the Facebooks and all that sort of thing.
Now, here’s what happens. There’s something scientists call cephalic phase digestive response. Cephalic means of the head. Cephalic phase digestive response is a fancy term for taste, pleasure, aroma, satisfaction, the visuals of a meal. Your brain needs that head phase of digestion in order to actually fuel your body and fuel your metabolism to know what to do.
So here’s what happens. When we aren’t getting the full, hearty experience of our meal, we will metabolize that meal—digest, assimilate, and calorie burn it—at 40% to 60% less efficiency, simply because we weren’t present. So if you’re not present with food, you’re not going to metabolize it fully.
If you’re not present with life, you’re going to miss it.
You won’t get the full nutrition. You won’t get the full, hearty experience from your life. The way we relate with food is oftentimes a mirror of how we relate with life.
So get present in all your life. Be present with the people you love. Be present when you’re happy. Be present when you’re angry. Be present when you eat. Be present when you love. Be present to all of it, because when we do that, when we bring presence and awareness into our existence, our relationship with food, our body, it all starts to heal in the most natural way. And that, my friends, is the magic of life.