Ease Dieting Stress by Eating Like a Bird

In nature, birds rarely suffer from obesity except in urban areas where they are fed human scraps. However, stress often causes obesity in pets and humans. Day-to-day stress increases hunger, especially for those tasty carbs and fats that promote weight gain. Unfortunately, cutting those carbs and fats can also cause stress and increase appetite, promoting a vicious cycle of overeating. 

Here are stay-trip tips inspired by our feathered friends in the wild.

1. Satisfy Your Hunger.

Those darling baby birds instinctively know they need to satisfy their hunger. So often, we humans ignore our hunger, which eventually leads to more stress and a junk-food binge. Eat only when you feel hungry. Eat until you are comfortably satisfied. These simple rules ease the stress caused by hunger and food deprivation.

2. Follow a Food Plan that Works for You.

We all lose weight differently. Some people lose by cutting carbs, others by cutting out meat, others by simply cutting down. Your best plan to lose weight is the one that worked best for you in the past. If you are starting your first reducing effort or if you consume a lot of refined carbs, follow this simple plan to get started.

3. Sing Instead of Screen.

Excessive screening (TV, social media, texting, gaming, online surfing) promotes inactivity and weight gain. Consider alternatives like singing, laughing, or writing in a (paper) journal.

4. Fall in Love.

Ever notice how appetite and weight just disappear in the throes of a new romance? For love birds in committed relationships, recapture those feelings with quiet dates walking in the park, and asking get-to-know-you questions. For single folks, get out and meet someone. If romance is not your goal, fall in love with your pets (including the baby birds in your trees) by spending quality time with them.

5. Immerse Yourself in a Consuming Hobby.

Creating, sporting, collecting, learning, and volunteering serve as effective distractions from goodies. The best way to get motivated is to start doing something for a week. If the activity leaves you cold, try something else. Keep pursuing new activities until you get hooked.

6. Work out Those Cravings.

Wouldn’t it be great to fly like a bird? Most everyone would enjoy exercising then. Find at least one exercise that you genuinely enjoy doing. Consider line dancing with YouTube videos, ping pong, dancing to music you had loved high school, playing catch, water walking, and shooting hoops in the park. That energizing exercise buzz not only alleviates stress and depression but encourages healthier eating. After all, who wants to undo the exercise benefit with an unhealthy carb binge?

7. Engage Other Senses.

Our feathered friends know how to use their four other senses. When tempted to taste, indulge in breathtaking sights (photos of colorful sunsets), soul-soothing sounds (Native-American flute), decadent sensations (massage or bubble bath), and uplifting scents (like a nostalgic perfume). You may just lose your craving altogether, but if you must indulge, savor your food slowly and mindfully for a more satisfying experience.

Observing simple techniques patterned after our feathered friends in nature may help you to live a healthier lifestyle and avoid the problems associated with obesity. Who can argue with success? Left to their own instincts, those birds manage their weight effectively. 

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