Karen R. Koenig, a cognitive-behavioral therapist is author of The Rules of “Normal” Eating: A Commonsense Approach for Dieters, Overeaters, Undereaters, Emotional Eaters, and Everyone in Between as well as and Nice Girls Finish Fat: Put Yourself First and Change Your Eating Forever.
In an interview (video above), Koenig discusses the rules of normal eating intended to address behaviors and make permanent changes so that you are not dieting, but rather following a healthy lifestyle, making appropriate food choices. The rules are:
1. Eat when you’re hungry.
2. Choose foods that will satisfy you and pay attention to what you are eating.
3. Enjoy the food.
4. Stop when you’re satisfied.
The rules are to address the psychology of eating — changing your thinking and behavior around eating. Koenig says that if people eat normally and pay attention to their body cues they will arrive at their natural body weight.
It is simple, but not easy, she says, and will requires hard work initially. It’s important that food not be the center of your life, and that you have a full and active life so that you are not living to eat.
Going out to dinner can be a challenge, and she offers tips on how to approach eating at a buffet without overdoing it. Take a look at all the food choices. Then narrow it down to the top five choices. Slowly eat the food, savoring and paying attention to it.
Find out more about her approach and her work at the Normal Eating Web site.
We can’t have long-term weight management success without making these kinds of changes. I’m always on the lookout for experts who address the topic, and I’ve found Koenig’s books extremely helpful. She speaks with candor about her own issues with food and shares the strategies she’s used to overcome them. Having started alternately overeating and starving myself when I was a teen, I can relate to the struggle, and know how easy it is to relapse.
Skinny Bliss readers have you read any her books? Have you found them helpful? Lest us know in the comments!
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