Friday, September 14, 2007

Looking at sugar a little more closely

Wow.. that experience that I just went through was something else. I've been looking back at it with introspection. As Sosai Masutatsu Oyama stated "Introspection begets wisdom. Therefore, see contemplation of your actions as opportunities to improve."

My body was sending me huge warning signs as I ate the first dessert that I had had enough calories being put into my system. I was getting loud "That's enough" signs. Yet, through encouragement from others, my resolve broke down and I went for a second, even MORE sugar filled dessert. It didn't take many words of support to convince me to go for more since I mentally wanted to have that treat. Physically, my body was almost screaming.. "No more!" I didn't listen, and I truly paid the price.

Now is where I wonder.. How did my body know that I was eating too many calories? It takes hours for the food to digest, and for the blood sugar level to rise in my system. What signals were telling my body to already start reacting negatively to the oncoming food?

I have read information that states that a person's body will react before that person takes a drink, or smokes a cigarette. Scientists have found that people need only to think about doing such things, and the body already starts chemically preparing for the onslaught. Does our body have a similar system for food intake?
Is there a pre-digestion system that looks at what we already have in our system, and sends symptoms of "FULL". I do know that our body has a system of familiarity. You can only eat so many items of one type before your body sends loud "full" symptoms, but if you switch to another type of food, then your body will feel hungry again.

Through my searches on the internet, I have found this wonderful resource which gives suggestions towards a more balanced, and healthy way to eat food. Here are the first four suggestions:

1.Know what being hungry feels like. This takes some practice. Know that being hungry is a feeling of needing food, any food, in the pit of your stomach. It is not your mind thinking about what it wishes you could eat.

2.When you're eating a meal, stop when you're satisfied, not when you're full. Don't you hate when you feel as if your stomach is so gorged it's going to explode? This is a sign that you have made a mistake in how you just ate.

3.Eat only when you're actually hungry. U.S culture seems to think that people get hungry at about 9 AM, 12 noon, and again at 6 PM. While this may be a generally good schedule for eating, remember that (usually) you don't have to eat at meal time if you're not hungry yet. Also, if you are hungry between meals, go ahead and have a healthy snack.

4.Realize that in general, your portion sizes are probably too big. Accepted portion sizes have practically doubled in the past 50 years. Remember that your stomach is about the size of your fist. Don't expect to stuff 10 times that amount of food into it without negative consequences.

This website is FILLED with wonderful practical tips that I know I will implement in my daily eating. I am aware that the healthier my body becomes, the louder will my body be when it recognizes something happening that is not good for it. Therefore, in the past, when my system was groggy, and less perceptive, eating a large amount of junk food didn't seem to affect me much. I could sit down and eat almost an entire large pizza in one sitting, downing a large pepsi, and then eat a large ice cream blizzard, and I'd just feel a mild complaint. My body was too sluggish to really react. But now.. it looks like all of my efforts to improve my circulation, digestion, and abilities are working. I abused my eating for one thing, and WHAM!! My body slams me with an extreme reaction of response. Hmm.. I guess that this is a good thing.. *wince*

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