Self-Talking the Dessert Splurge

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Thank you to the individual who posted the anonymous comment on the 'dessert before seconds theory' which I wrote about on Day Two of the California Obesity Conference. This person had some really good insight on how to handle the 'dessert' fix.

Not only does s/he subscribe to it, but feels the secret is talking yourself through the dessert decision. In other words, self-talk; decide beforehand what you're going to have for dessert and how much. S/he's even confessed to having dessert for dinner from time to time, but makes sure s/he eats well balanced meals the rest of the day. Kinda like saving your calories for the treat later in the day. Seems quite reasonable. And the commenter says this technique indeed helps her/him to eat fewer calories overall.

I suppose we all do self-talk when it comes to food but often it happens afterwards when we're feeling bad about the binge or the junk we just ate. So maybe the trick is to do the self-talk before we eat; address those cravings consciously. It's so important to pay attention to what your brain is telling you it wants, and to deal with it up front. Be cognizant of that craving. Don't try to push it down, but talk yourself through it.

I don't know that there is any research to support the benefit of self-talk, and for some it may not work. I would be very interested in knowing if any of you try this self-talk and allow yourself to have the indulgences you crave. Does the self-talk help you stay in control and not go off the deep end on a binge? We can do our own mini-study.

Have a fruit filled dessert today perhaps :)

(Photo courtesy of wenDaLicious)
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About the Author

Registered dietitian Andrea N. Giancoli is a nutrition advocate, consultant and educator.

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