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How to Use Your Head to Trick Your Appetite

By Sandy Schroeder

If you and your family are struggling with questions like these, you may need some new tricks to eat healthy.

  • Why do we keep eating when we are already full
  • How do we break away from pizza and burgers
  • How do we make real food as tempting as junk food

UC Berkeley's Greater Good magazine gets specific to give us ways to make more healthy food choices. See if this sounds familiar. "Today I ate three cookies, not because I particularly wanted them, but because they were there."

That sort of mindless eating happens all of the time, according to Brian Wansink in his book, Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think.

What to Do

Here are some ways to turn eating around for you and your family.

Put the fun back in healthy - Markets often put fruit in attractive baskets to make them more appealing. You can do the same thing at home. Load up small baskets and wooden bowls with nuts and varieties of apples. Wansink said he puts walnuts in a small bubblegum machine to make them fun for his daughter.

Fill the fridge with healthy choices - Fresh grapes, small tubs of low fat, low sugar Greek yogurt, fresh berries and mandarin oranges might be a good start to upstage sugary sodas or teas.

Sell the sizzle - If your kids have nicknames for everything, you might name dinners at your house as Taco Night, Build Your Own Salad, In House Pasta, etc. Start with their favorite foods and keep building on the healthy ingredients that they like.

Offer more healthy choices - Simply demanding that kids eat their carrots seldom flies, but fixing a veggie platter filled with carrots, celery, cherry tomatoes and green onions with a low-fat Greek yogurt garlic and dill dip might be just fine.

Involve kids in the cooking and baking - A healthy loaf of banana or zucchini bread often tastes better when they helped bake it. Soups or stews loaded with veggies, lean beef or chicken also works when they help put it together.

Make the farmers market an outing - Take the family along to pick the fruits and veggies that they like the most. Instead of studiously avoiding the supermarket pastry aisle, you can cruise around picking up avocados, ears of corn, whole squash, oranges, apples, and berries.

Keeping food interesting for you and your family could make the difference in maintaining a healthy weight, and enjoying healthy food instead of fast food, takeout and junk food snacks. Do your homework and keep looking for ways to make it work.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Lawrenceville, Ga.

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