Control Your Calories With Hari Hachi Bu
Through mass media and self-help diatribes, we’ve been bombarded with such tired adages as “Give it 100%!” or “Go all the way!” Lately I’ve been hearing such ridiculous statements such as “Give it 110%!” or even larger figures. I don’t know about you, but I don’t think we can give a hundred percent to everything in our lives without becoming overwhelmed. We often divide ourselves up between a variety of roles, and mindless pep talk like that doesn’t really grasp the reality of the human condition. Sometimes you need to give it less than a hundred percent, and today I’d like to encourage you to do just that when you are eating: eat only until you are eighty percent full, a technique known by Japanese as hari hachi bu .
Turning Off The Parent Voice
People normally have this natural point where they realize they have had enough. You start with this big plate of food, but then you figure out when you are ten bites from finishing that you’ve had enough. But you keep on eating. Now why do we all do that? Maybe you remember your parent or grandparent, who was a veteran of the Depression days, wagging his/her fork at you, intoning, “Finish your food! Don’t you know there are starving children in Africa?” It’s not wise to waste, but you can put aside food for later or have it put in a doggie bag. So shut your inner parent voice up and stop eating!
Big Results, Small Waistline
This technique is really hard to apply for another reason. Many people feel compelled to eat until they are bloated. Sometimes we just aren’t satisfied until we feel our growing stomachs burgeoning with heavy food. I can understand that. But that makes it harder and harder on your body to lose weight, because the more you continue to do that, the more food your body needs before it can give you the ‘full’ signal. This is the downward spiral of weight gain so many have fallen into. The best thing to do if you don’t feel happy with the amount you’ve eaten is to move the food out of sight for 15 minutes. When you come back to it, you may realize you were made out of stronger stuff than you thought, and that you actually don’t need to eat that much food to be happy with your meal.
Some other suggestions for learning to stop when you are full rather than stuffed include using smaller plates since they don’t have as much room for as much food, as well as putting your fork down between each bite and not picking it up again until you have chewed and swallowed your last bite. These simple tips force you to eat more slowly, which also help you realize when you feel full before hitting that “stuffed” stage.
Give it Eighty Percent!
Do you agree or disagree with hari hachi bu? Let me know by leaving your feedback below. Thanks!
My passion is to help you live your healthiest and most harmonious life, but in a way that’s realistic and practical for you as a unique individual on this planet. My philosophy is all about “balance,” never a diet since a diet is not sustainable for life, aka Kill The Diet.