Gut Check

I know that it is not healthy to overeat, but I can’t really tell when I am full so I often end up feeling heavy after I eat. How do I know what quantity of food is right for me?

ANSWER:

First of all, you are definitely not alone here. So many people struggle with knowing what quantity of food is ideal for them. Also, you are correct! From an Ayurvedic perspective, overeating puts a lot of strain on your body. It squelches out your digestive fire so your food doesn’t break down the way it should. When food isn’t digested properly, it turns into a form of toxicity that can cause dullness, lethargy, weight gain, and over time it weakens your immune system. Here are 3 things you can do to ensure you are eating a portion that is right for you!

1. Check in with your body before you eat

How hungry are you? Sometimes we eat when we are not very hungry and that means our digestive fire will not burn hot enough to properly digest our food. Wait to eat until you are actually physically hungry.

2. Hold out your hands in front of you, palms up and put them together like you just scooped up a pile of sand

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This is is called an Anjali. Now, imagine that your hands are full of food, this is the appropriate amount to eat in one setting. Different people have different sized hands, and this can help give you an idea of how much quantity you should be eating. If the food is light, like salad or soup you can have a little more than what fits in your hands.

3. Be sure not to drink too much water before or with your meal

This can drown out your digestive fire and slow down the digestive process. Instead, try sipping room temperature or hot water slowly with the meal. Trust me! It makes a huge difference.

Thanks for your question, and happy digestion! (Hey! That Rhymed!)