How to Tackle Overeating and Foster Longevity

Six people having a very large meal.

Food and its abundance have become a trademark for a developed society, and it is always hard to resist delicious food. (Image: Olga Klochanko via Dreamstime)

Food and its abundance have become a trademark for a developed society. Overeating is becoming the norm and causes little concern to those who enjoy food, except for those who strive for longevity.

Studies have shown that coming away from meals being slightly less satiated is far more beneficial for one’s health and longevity. The habit of continuous overeating tends to hinder the body’s metabolism and will eventually lead to the development of some chronic diseases.

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How to tackle overeating

Become mindful of when you are full and when you are satisfied. During each meal, practice sitting at the table and calmly eating for a minimum of 20 minutes. At the 20-minute mark, the brain will start receiving the body’s signal that it is full. A person who eats too fast will consume too much food before the brain can register that the body is full. 

As one becomes full, the body registers that its desire for food and its speed for eating are starting to decline. The point of satisfaction, when the sensation of fullness becomes noticeable, is the best time to leave the dinner table. 

Consciously chew your food and take your time when eating. Taking your time and chewing slowly reduces the amount of food you ingest. Chewing food longer helps adjust the bacterial flora in the intestines, decreasing the toxins in the blood and improving the body’s metabolism.

To ovoid overeating, consciously chew your food and take your time when eating.
Consciously chew your food and take your time when eating. (Image: Ivan Dudka via Dreamstime)

Health problems you can avoid by not overeating

Gastritis

Individuals who have weak digestive systems that take a long time to digest their food may eventually develop gastritis. Those already predisposed to gastritis will experience further aggravation when they overeat. 

Indigestion

Overeating tends to burden the proper functioning of one’s intestines and stomach, thus leading to indigestion, stomach aches, and bloating.

Dementia

Overeating may lead to poor circulation of the cerebral vascular system, thus damaging brain tissues and cells.

Cardiovascular disease

Residual food found in the large intestine will be broken down by bacteria, which produce toxins that may induce cardiovascular disease. Excess meat eaten at dinner time will increase the burden of the gastric system and quickly elevate blood pressure. In addition, during sleep, the blood flow slows down, and any fat present will accumulate on the vascular walls, thus leading to atherosclerosis.

Osteoporosis

As people age, many develop the habit of overeating. Such people will commonly find that their parathyroid hormone levels will start elevating. Higher parathyroid hormone levels can cause a calcium deficiency, even if one takes calcium supplements. Thus, the risk of contracting osteoporosis at an older age becomes higher.

How to control the desire for delicious food

It is always hard to resist delicious food. However, there are three ways to control our desire and prevent overeating delicious foods.

  1. Consume a bowl of soup before eating food. A bowl of soup will help fill the stomach so you will feel less hungry and thus prevent overeating.
  2. Eat your vegetables first. When a meal includes vegetables and meat, always eat the vegetables first, as these fiber-filled morsels will quickly fill your stomach. Choose grains for the main dish since they are low in calories and will satisfy you quickly.
  3. Consume smaller meals throughout the day. Limit the quantity of each meal by breaking down the meal into many smaller meals. This will help slow down the speed of your metabolism. As a result, this will keep your heart, brain, lungs, liver, kidneys, etc., remaining as young as possible.
A bowl of chicken broth with fresh herbs sprinkled on top.
Having some soup at the beginning of the meal will help fill the stomach so one will feel less hungry. (Image: Photosiber via Dreamstime)

Steps to counteract overeating

Get some exercise

Avoid vigorous exercise after a heavy meal. Instead, do some housework or take a walk. These are a better choice.

Massage the abdomen

Massaging the abdomen can help digestion and reduce any bloating caused by overeating. Massaging gently, in a circular motion, around the belly button is the best method. Massage in the same direction whether you choose the clockwise or counter-clockwise direction.

Take a shower

If you feel uncomfortable after overeating, take a shower one hour after the meal. This can help consume some energy and increase your digestion, which might relieve any discomfort.

Take in some apple cider vinegar 

Apple cider vinegar can stimulate the stomach to secrete stomach acid, thus aiding digestion. Some apple cider vinegar, orange juice, or lemon juice can also relieve any discomfort from overeating.

Translated by Audrey

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